Berner Firsts

Building Better Products So You Can Build Better Environments

In 1956, Erling Berner brought European Air Curtain technology to the United Sates and started the first air curtain manufacturing firm in North America. What followed is a continuous process of invention and innovation that drives us to this day. Here are some of our more noteworthy:

1950s/ 1960s

  • Developed the first cold storage air curtains, the Model 10, 12, 15, & 20, using pressurized plenum design
  • Introduced first direct gas-fired heaters for air curtains

1970s

  • Miniveil Air Curtain – introduced tangential wheel for a flatter, lower profile air curtain
  • Design and development of the CFA and CFC. First clay models were built and then the final design. These units are the workhorses of all industrial air curtains, having exceptional performance and virtually maintenance free. The CF design also introduced fiberglass diverters for industrial air curtains, significantly reducing the weight of the air curtain.
  • The development of the first air curtain specifically designed for insect control, the IAC (insect-a-screen) for 7’-10’ door heights
  • The first compact industrial air curtains, CIF, AFA, and AFB
  • The development of the FlyStop, an insect control air curtain for large openings
  • The Mark Air Curtain, the first aesthetically pleasing commercial air curtain for customer entry. This well-known air curtain has since been followed by the lower profile MaxAir, the Mark2, and the Aura, an air curtain designed in the “Contemporary” style.

1980s

  • The EWD Air Curtain – first air curtain able to cover 30’ high openings
  • Introduced the first modulating nozzle to adjust for variable wind speeds

1990s

  • Aristocrat Air Curtain – air curtain developed specifically to meet the kitchen entry needs of the Food Service Industry
  • Air Entrance System, recirculating air curtain: we took a good idea and made it better

2000s

  • The now iconic illustration of “How an air curtain works”
  • Research of mosquito and fly disinsection of airplanes with the DOT and USDA results in testing which verifies that air curtains deter flying insects
  • Intelliswitch digital controller – air curtain industry’s first digital programmable variable speed controller
  • In-Ceiling Mount Air Curtain – first air curtain designed specifically to be installed flush with a drop ceiling
  • The Pro V nozzle, the revolutionary design allows for further, more efficient velocity projection without increasing motor size
  • Use of CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamic) software to model air curtain performance as doors open and close and people pass back & forth
  • Built an in-house test vestibule to research air curtain performance over main entrances
  • Walk-in Cooler Kit, makes retrofitting a walk-in cooler with an air curtain simple
  • Drive-Thru Unit – first air curtain designed exclusively for the particular needs of the QSR market’s 2’ – 3’ high openings, along with innovative mounting and filter brackets.
  • Venturi Heater – patented design allows for the heating of the air stream without reduction in air performance. The venturi design improves the heat transfer from heating element to the air (as compared to traditional heater placement and design), and does not interfere with the air stream. Easy to install and replace, if necessary.
  • BIM (Building Information Models) models of our air curtains

All the time:

  • Custom air curtain jobs – over the years, specifiers, designers, engineers, contractors, etc., have turned to Berner with special requests to meet their application and design needs. Berner’s in-house experience and knowledge, coupled with that of our reps, allows for creative, yet practical, solutions to some interesting problems.