Architectural and Engineering Glossary


Air Maintenance Device

A valve required to introduce air into a tank which stores water under pressure.

Air Meter

A device for measuring the air content of concrete and mortar.

Air Monitoring

During the removal of asbestos in buildings,the measurement of asbestos fiber content in the air.

Air Motor

An air-operated device used to open or close a damper,1 or valve.

Air Moving Device

See fan.

Air Outlet

In an air-conditioning system,a device at the end of a duct through which air is exhausted.

Air Permeability Test

A test for the measurement of the fineness of powdered materials,such as portland cement.

Air Pipe

A seldom used synonym for vent pipe. 

Air Pocket

An air-filled volume within a section of piping (or an apparatus) which is normally filled with liquid.

Air Pressure Relief Vent

A relief vent.

Air Pump

A pump used to exhaust or to compress air,or force it through another apparatus.Also see air compressor.

Air Purge Valve

A device which eliminates trapped air from a piping system.

Air Quality

See indoor air quality.

Air Receiver

On an air compressor,the air storage tank.

Air Register

Same as register.

Air Regulator

A device for regulating airflow,as in the burner of a furnace.

Air Reheater

In a heating system,any device used to add heat to the air circulating in the system.

Air Right

The legal property right for use of the space above a specified elevated plane;usually includes the right to ground support but excludes other rights to ground use,e.g,the right to construct a building over a railroad track.

Air Scrubber

See air washer.

Air Separator

An apparatus for separating ground-up materials pneumatically into various sizes.

Air Shaft,air Well

A ventilating shaft;a roof- less enclosed area within a building or between buildings;may have openings such as windows.

Air Shutter

A device for regulating the quantity of air being mixed with gas for combustion.

Air Slaking

Absorption by quicklime or cement of moisture and carbon dioxide from the atmosphere,causing the material to change its chemical composition.

Air Space

The space above private property or public property for which air rights may be granted.

Air Tap

Same as air vent.

Air Terminal

In a lightning protection system,the combination of a metal rod and its brace or footing,on the upper part of a structure.

Air Terminal Unit

In air-conditioning,same as terminal unit.

Air Test

A test that applies uniform air pressure throughout a drainage system being tested for leakage.This test is recommended in lieu of a water test when there is a danger of water freezing during the test.

Air Tight

Said of an enclosure or barrier that does not permit the passage of air.

Air Vent

In a water distribution system,a vent for releasing trapped air;usually located at the highest point in the system.

Air Ventilation

The quantity of air which must be supplied to maintain the desired quality of air within a space.

Air Void

A space which is filled with air in cement paste,mortar,or concrete.Also see entrapped air,entrained air.

Air Washer

A water spray system or device for cleaning,humidifying,or dehumidifying the air. 

Air Well

See air shaft.

Air-blown Mortar

Same as shotcrete.


Said of a pipe or apparatus in which the presence of a pocket of air prevents or reduces the desired liquid flow in the pipe or apparatus.Also see air lock,2.


To vulcanize at ordinary room temperatures,or without the aid of heat.

Air-entraining Agent

An addition for hydraulic cement or an admixture for concrete or mortar which causes air to be incorporated in the form of minute bubbles in the concrete or mortar during mixing,usually to increase its workability and frost resistance.

Air-lock Strip

The weather stripping which is fastened to the edges of each wing of a revolving door. 

Air-mixing Plenum

In an air-conditioning system,an enclosed volume in which recirculated air is mixed with fresh air for distribution throughout the system.


In the placement of shotcrete,a perforated manifold through which air is introduced into the flow of material.

Air-seasoned Lumber

See air-dried lumber.


To allow material to harden under normal atmospheric pressure and temperature.


Said of a surface that is wetted by the exposure to moisture in air.

Air-supported Structure

See pneumatic structure.

Air-water Jet

1.A jet of air and water mixed,which leaves a nozzle at high velocity;used in cleaning the surfaces of concrete or rock.2.In cleaning concrete or rock surfaces,a high-velocity jet consisting of a mixture of air and water.

Air-water Storage Tank

A water storage tank in which the air,above the water,is compressed. 

Airborne Sound

Sound that reaches a point in a building by propagation from the source through air.


A small tool used for the fine spray application of paint,dye,watercolor pigment,or ink by compressed air.

Airplane Bungalow

A Craftsman style bungalow having a gable whose face is parallel to the main ridge of the roof;its second floor is a single room.