Industrial fans are very different from those used at home. Typically, these fans are most often used as a means of exhausting noxious, contaminated, or even hot air to move it away from machinery and people. Keep in mind that these fans generally include Centrifugal Blowers and Axial Flow fans but they can also include static pressures for instances when high velocity is needed or in the case of long, ducts.
For some types of industries, maintaining fresh and clean air is imperative. For instance, some people work around paint, work on welding, abrasive blasting, or even for areas of polishing and grinding. In fact, many of these and other situations are required by law to maintain specific air quality. Therefore, the company would be responsible for providing some type of industrial fan.
The actual size of the area in which people work would determine the quantity of clean air supply needed. As an example, to determine what you would need, you could take any area or room and then multiply the length, times the width. The measurement would give you the overall cubic feet, which would then be divided by the number of minutes per air change, based on the particular room or space. The number you end up with is the CFM needed for proper ventilation.
Obviously, the goal with any industrial fan is to ensure proper ventilation for safety and health. The thing to remember when shopping around for an industrial fan is that you have to consider several factors. Therefore, if you are unsure, you should consider having a trained professional or quality engineer perform a test to determine exactly the type of industrial fan needed. Although you could hire anyone trained and certified, to find someone, you could check with both OSHA and NIOSH.
Now, a very important thing to remember with industrial fans is that in addition to exhausting out bad air, fresh air then needs to be supplied. If more air were exhausted than replaced, you would end up with what is known as "negative pressure". Unfortunately, this type of environment is unhealthy. Choosing an industrial fan with a makeup system to include a blower, fan, damper, shutter, and so on would be the best option.
If you have any area in which workers stay where air quality has the potential of being compromised, you need some type of industrial fan. Again, in addition to keeping your workers safe and healthy, you also add years of life to your equipment and machinery.