Airform fabrication and inflation

After foundation and tunnel systems are complete, preparations follow for the inflation of the airform.  Construction equipment and materials are staged inside the footprint of the airform.

The PVC airform, custom sized based on the customers’ specifications, is bolted to the ring beam and inspected to ensure integrity. It is then inflated using large fans to form the dome shape and maintain inflation pressure.  Inflation pressures vary by building size, but typically range from 1.5-2.5 inches of water column. The inflation pressure is maintained throughout subsequent construction activities until the reinforced concrete has cured.  The fabric will remain in place indefinitely as it becomes the outer waterproofing membrane.

The dual role of the PVC airform

These air-inflated, PVC-fabric structures act as a critical, load-bearing component in the construction of silos that can span over 330’ and reach heights of 200’.

Specialized fabrication to meet the highest standards

The airform is one of the few components not sourced locally; it is fabricated at the Dome Technology campus in a state-of-the-art facility to match precise design requirements. We utilise software-driven, automated equipment to ensure our fabric components are cut and welded with the greatest possible precision and consistency.

The all-weather construction environment

Once attached to the ring beam and inflated, the airform creates a protected environment, allowing for construction to continue inside the dome in almost any weather conditions.