SPOKANE, Wash. - Patrons of the Regal Cinemas-Spokane Valley 12, located here, used to endure harsh weather while waiting to buy a ticket. Those in line to purchase tickets had to enter the theatre unprotected from the elements on a concrete walkway that created a virtual wind tunnel in below freezing temperatures. Add blowing rain or snow and the conditions are almost unbearable.

To enhance customer comfort, the management of Regal Cinemas 12 constructed a 40-foot-long, semi-glass enclosure adjacent to the theatre entrance to serve as a windbreaker.

To top it all off, the theatre has installed two Space-Ray® LTU75 unitized low-intensity infrared gas heaters. Each 17-foot long unit provides 75,000 Btu/h of heating capacity. The units are suspended from a metal awning 10 feet above the concrete walkway for spot heating. An on/off switch inside the theatre controls the operation of the heaters.

Before installation last year, a Space-Ray spot heat calculation was part of the process in determining the ideal location and capacity of the heaters.

"We always recommend U-tube heaters when we design a spot or area heating project," said Bob Genisol, vice president of sales and marketing for Space-Ray. "U-Tube infrared heaters provide more uniform energy distribution than the straight tube infrared heaters. Straight tubes are typically always hotter at the burner end than at the exhaust end; therefore, we always utilize the U-tube heaters at lower mounting heights when ultimate customer comfort is desired."

Unlike forced air heating that works from the top down, these heaters work from the bottom up, warming people and surfaces first for optimum comfort, in addition to the direct radiant warmth from the heaters.

The Space-Ray LTU75 U-tube incorporates several features. For example, a self-contained draft inducer, a factory-assembled tube and reflector body with three-bolt control box assembly, three monitoring lights for on-line diagnosis, and a calorized aluminized steel emitter tube for radiant efficiency and corrosion resistance.

Publication date: 11/24/2003