Interior Glazing: Ventilated Doors

VanAir Design: Ventilated Door


The VanAir Ventilated Door is an advanced interior door that provides ventilation without sacrificing acoustic and visual privacy. Designed for commercial and residential buildings, the VanAir Door promotes higher indoor environmental quality. Air flows from one side, through the door and out the opposing side. The creation of these doors is innovative because they take some of the pressure off of the ventilation systems that are currently in airtight buildings. This is important because it helps to avoid Sick Building Syndrome (SBS). SBS is defined as “(the) phenomenon affecting building occupants who claim to experience acute health and comfort effects that appear to be linked to time spent in a building, but no specific illness or cause can be identified.” (IJOEM)


Although doors in themselves are not an innovative technology, these door systems are. Not only do they provide an innovative form of ventilation, but also they help buffer the traveling of sound. “Ventilation pathways are notorious for transmitting sound. However, the VanAir Door features acoustical baffles and Helmholtz resonator constructions tuned to attenuate specific frequencies, providing you with the privacy you’d expect when you close your door.” (VanAir Design) The combination of these two qualities, has the capability to set new standards for buildings. Through the use of these doors, ductwork can be reduced, with the potential for elimination. This would change the building, as it would allow for more space for the user, and lessen the amount of materials needed for the built environment. My concern is whether or not reimagining the door like this contributes enough to the imminent future. I believe with further building design improvements this door ventilation system could have a more positive impact.


Jena Boldt | Week 12



  1. kimx4403

    Claire Kim
    Week 13 Response
    This topic is very interesting to me as it is something that I was not aware of. Buildings should definitely take into account of public health, in fact it should be at the top of the list when considering designs and when actually building it. Making sure that the inhabitants of the building are getting the proper ventilation should be a given, but it is surprising to learn that it is not always the case, as seen through sick building syndrome. “The sick building syndrome comprises of various nonspecific symptoms that occur in the occupants of a building. This feeling of ill health increases sickness absenteeism and causes a decrease in productivity of the workers. As this syndrome is increasingly becoming a major occupational hazard, the cause, management and prevention of this condition have been discussed in this article”. Buildings that cause SBS should be considered failures as there are many ways to prevent that from happening, such as the Vanair ventilation door as you have mentioned.
    There are other ways to improve ventilation as well, the material of the buildings roof can have a large impact on ventilation quality. One could decide to use natural ventilation, such as a solar chimney. ” One approach is to create a solar chimney in which air is heated by the sun, becomes more buoyant, and rises up and out through vents near the top of the building; this lowers the pressure in the house, which draws fresh air in through specially placed inlet ports”. Bottom line is, if building inhabitants are complaining about having SBS, creating better ventilation should not be a problem, nor should creating a solution even be up for discussion, it must be a given.

  2. Ventilated Doors is an interesting project. It used door, an architectural component too pure to be modified, as ventilation devices, and created an aesthetic solution for indoor air quality. It require no electricity, easy to install, and decrease energy used on artificial ventilation. However, there are several issues Ventilated Doors may meet.
    First of all, designer did thought about privacy issue brought by ventilated door and designed special sound isolation. However, after few years, the isolation layer may collect dust and gem, which may cause health issue when they are spread into rooms. Since construction of Ventilated Doors is complex, it may not be easy for staff to clean the isolation layer.
    In addition, when air pressure is highly different between two rooms, for example, between a air conditioned room and a equipment closet, holes for air isolation may become whistles. If ventilation channel could not be manually plugged, it could also leek cool air or heat and waste energy.

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