Crowcon’s CellarSafe Gas Detector Helps Athletes Train Safely in ‘Artificial Mountains’
Crowcon gas detector ensures constant O2 and CO2 levels in enclosed chambers
Crowcon’s CellarSafe O2/CO2 gas detector and control system is being used to monitor the level of the two gases in unique ‘artificial mountains’ – enclosed endurance training chambers designed to simulate depleted oxygen levels at high altitudes. The chambers are manufactured by German company Höhenbalance AG.
Photo: http://www.halmapr.com/crowcon/art_mnt_cellarsafe.jpg (749 KB)
Generators filter O2 molecules out of the air feeding the chambers, resulting in concentrations of 14% or even lower, depending on the settings. In this way the ‘altitude’ can be simulated up to 6000m.
While training in the chamber an athlete will breath out a lot of CO2 which, if not monitored closely, can build up to dangerous concentrations. The compact CellarSafe is therefore equipped with both O2 and CO2 sensors and constantly monitors the concentration of the two gasses in the chamber. O2 and CO2 levels are transmitted to an adjacent control unit which adds or removes O2, depending on the demand. In this way a safe, constant ‘altitude’ is maintained for the athlete.
“Minor variations in O2 concentration are not immediately dangerous for the athletes, but reliability and accuracy are nevertheless our main concerns to achieve optimal training conditions,” said Christian Blauth, a sports scientist and member of the Höhenbalance AG management team. “Crowcon, which is well known as a leading supplier of gas detection equipment, was therefore chosen to ensure the required safety levels.”
The training chambers are not just used by athletes but also by people preparing for climbing or trekking in mountain regions, preparing their bodies for strenuous activities at high altitudes. Research has also shown that high altitude training supports weight loss programs and helps to reduce stress.
The CellarSafe gas detector also has many other applications. It is most commonly used in wineries, breweries, food processing facilities and pub cellars to monitor and control CO2 levels. Long term exposure to as little 0.5% volume of CO2 represents a toxic health hazard and concentrations greater than 15% volume can lead to death. The CellarSafe was specifically designed to warn personnel of these hazards.
Simple to use, the CellarSafe not only continuously monitors CO2 and O2, but can also be connected with control systems to automatically turn on ventilation fans, trigger alarms or, as in this application, adjust O2 concentrations to within set parameters. It has a clear, easy to read backlit display of gas readings, a bright LED warning light and a loud built-in alarm. Ingress protected to IP65 against dust and water ingress, it can operate over a wide temperature range.