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Air Structure Lingo

Air Structure Lingo


Think you have what it takes to work with domes? If so, it’s time to learn some of the language! Just like any industry, there are words and jargon that you wouldn’t really understand from an outside perspective. To truly appreciate air supported structures, it’s helpful to know some of these unique words and phrases.


Here’s a list of the different things you might hear if you’re working with The Farley Group.


Bubble – We use this one a lot in this blog, but if you’re new, you might not link the word “bubble” with the massive structures that we create. Regardless, this is a common name for air supported structures, especially in the U.S.                                                                                                                                             

  Sports Dome




Airlocks – The theory behind airlocks can in an earlier blog article and once you know the theory, you can put it to practice! Airlocks are a key part of any air structure and we use shortened names to make our lives simpler.  Large airlocks are called VALs which stands for vehicle airlock, and smaller pedestrian airlocks are calls PALs. Unless you want to sound silly, make sure to spell out each letter. Don’t be talking about your Pal, Val!

  Multi Sport Dome




Curtain – No we’re not talking about your typical window coverings when we say curtains. For domes, we have a curtain at any door or opening that needs to be attached to the dome. It really is more of a shroud than a curtain. Without the curtain, though, these spots would be letting out air.

  Divider Curtain




Field joint – The field joint is a pretty simple one. Each dome is made up of several sections—when the dome is being installed, these sections need to be put together. The seams where the two sections meet is called the field joint.

  Sports Dome




“Flap some air” – If you’ve seen an install, you might have heard someone yelling this out. Domes are made up of a relatively light material, but when you’ve got a dome that’s big enough to cover a soccer field, the whole thing can become pretty heavy. We still have to move the fabric around to get it in position, though. To do this, a pocket of air is pushed under the fabric to hold it up and make it easier to slide around. “Flap some air” is called out to get the pullers to do exactly that, flap some air underneath the fabric. We’re absolutely not telling everyone to flap around like birds!

  Sports Bubble


These words only scratch the surface of the interesting lingo that we use here at The Farley Group and there are plenty more where these come from. Are there any terms you might be curious about? We’ll continue writing them up in this blog, but if there are any that you’d like to know more about, be sure to leave a message on our Facebook page or Twitter!

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