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Need to know: Dyson Airblade Tap

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As mentioned recently, Dyson has been turning prosaic products like vacuums, hand dryers, and fans into objects of curious desire. Dyson’s high-tech solutions address the myriad design shortcomings of these products, and in doing so, shine a spotlight on the level of mediocrity we’ve all come to accept in regard to their performance. Multiple generations have merely come to terms with the numerous idiosyncrasies of vacuums being complicated to use and rather ineffective when they do get used, hand dryers being more like noise makers rather than a thing that actually dries hands, and fans that chop the air and deliver as much annoying buffeting as they do cooling breezes.

Not one to rest on the successes of its past, Dyson has not only improved upon the above-mentioned gadgets made by other companies, they’ve also looked within to see where there’s room for improvement in their own product line. The next, not-so-obvious, step in the evolution of the hand dryer addresses the inefficient and particularly messy need to move from the sink where hands are washed, to the wall-mounted hand dryer or towel dispenser where the drying duties take place. The Dyson solution is the Airblade Tap.

By putting the bathroom faucet and hand dryer into one unit, Dyson has once again changed the rules of engagement in regard to the process of washing and drying our hands. Extending out from the central marine-grade stainless steel infrared actuated tap are two arms through which sheets of air traveling at 420 miles per hour literally squeegee the water from the hands and direct it into the sink. This process, which eliminates the water dripping trip from the sink to the hand dryer or towels, takes a scant 14 seconds according to the folks at Dyson.

Though all the action takes place on the sunny side of the sink, it is underneath where all the gadgetry works in precise unison to make the Airblade Tap do what it does. Contained within what Dyson calls a “motor bucket” are the key components, including the brushless V4 motor, HEPA filter, and an array of proprietary silencers. The end result took three years of research and development, 3000 prototypes and an investment of £40 million.

The Airblade Tap comes in three configurations: Wall mounted, or countertop mounted in two lengths. For more information, including CAD drawings and technical data, click here.

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