Dyson has launched the Airblade Tap – a combination faucet and hand dryer that means people needn’t drip all over the floor on their way from one to the other.
Thanks to infrared sensors, the water starts when the user’s hands are placed beneath the tap; moving them slightly outwards activates the dryer instead. The company claims the hand dryer can do the job in as little as 12 seconds.
“In washrooms using conventional taps, you’ll need to move to a separate hand drying area, dripping water on the floors as you go,” says James Dyson. “It’s why we’ve developed a tap with our hand drying technology in it.”
Based on a a brushless DC motor, the device incorporates the company’s Airblade technology. It draws in 30 liters of air a second and then blows it in two ‘sheets’ across the user’s hands at 420 miles per hour to scrape them dry. The air is passed through a HEPA filter to eliminate bacteria.
To keep the noise down – and many children find the existing Airblade dryers pretty terrifying – the device incorporates six silencers.
And the company claims that the device is far cheaper to run than conventional hand dryers or paper towels. While it costs around £1,000 to start with, the running costs are just £48 per year, it says, compared with £1,480 for paper towels. It’s up to 69 percent cheaper than other hand dryers, says Dyson, and produces up to 70 percent less CO2.
The company also points out that it saves space that could be used for other purposes – maybe womens’ washrooms will at last get enough cubicles to go round…