Built Environment

Coltraco Ultrasonics proudly operate in the Built Environment and are thought leaders in airtightness testing and leak quantification.

The Portascanner® AIRTIGHT is Coltraco Ultrasonics’ most advanced ultrasonic room integrity testing tool. It can be used to locate and quantify even minor leak sites quickly, easily, and non-destructively. Records of all of your tests – including images of the test structure with leak sites clearly marked – are stored on the device and can be exported to an external drive at your convenience, all with an intuitive, touchscreen interface.

P/N: 509004-AT

Clean indoor air should become a fundamental commitment for the provision of that basic human right, continued and assured access to pure fresh air. Energy efficient mechanical ventilation and effective air filtration, must start with an airtight building, and controlled airflow within it.

Any unwanted air infiltration or leakage, through gaps or cracks in the building, will adversely affect the integrity of any air filtration or purification process, as well as increasing the energy consumption of the air handling units.

The Portascanner® Airtight is a World First from Coltraco Ultrasonics.

This is the first time anybody has been able to:


  1. Identify leak sites with a microscopic level of accuracy, and
  2. Measure and quantify them using sophisticated algorithms, and
  3. Generate a value for the air flow rate through each leak, as well as
  4. Calculate the building’s/room’s overall air permeability.


The Portascanner® Airtight 520 is unique as it possesses the hardware and software necessary to create the most stable and consistent signal required to quantify leak extent ultrasonically. In a recent test study at the Air Tightness Testing and Measurement Association (ATTMA)’s Building Performance Hub, the Portascanner Airtight 520 performed outstandingly, being able to identify and quantify air leaks that could not be found with any alternative method, allowing the ultrasonic quantification of leak sites in a depressurised environment which has never been done before.

Air flow measurement devices, such as the Portascanner® AIRTIGHT 520, that allow for frequent and regular detection, location and quantification of unwanted air leaks must therefore be integrated alongside existing airtightness testing equipment, to ensure the success of building ventilation strategies.


The Portascanner® AIRTIGHT 520 is a unique ultrasonic technology.


  • Technologies such as smoke pencils and thermal cameras are highly subjective, with no means of quantifying the extent of leaks nor the airflow through them. Anemometers are able to directly measure airflow, but are flawed in other respects.
  • It is also able to determine whether or not the permeability of a surface is low enough for the contained volume to be positively or negatively pressurised with Fan Pressurisation Equipment (FPE). Leak detection and quantification are therefore an essential part of airtightness testing, yet existing technologies are poorly suited to these tasks.
  • The key benefit of the Portascanner® AIRTIGHT 520 over an anemometer is that the former does not require a pressure differential i.e. there does not need to be any airflow currently occurring for the Portascanner® AIRTIGHT 520  to pick up the potential for future airflow. That means that the Portascanner® AIRTIGHT 520  air flow measuring device can be used prior to the installation of HVAC and FPE.
  • It can also be used when ventilation has been installed but is turned off, or if it is not functioning correctly.
  • As an example, if a room is supposed to be negatively pressurised to 50Pa, but is only pressurised to 1 Pa, an anemometer may fail to identify leaks that would only become significant under greater pressure differentials. Meanwhile the Portascanner® AIRTIGHT 520  air leakage tester will tell the user the airflow under the desired pressure differential (in this case, 50Pa) meaning the true impact of the leak can be known under various pressure conditions without the need to impose those conditions during testing, or if those conditions are falsely believed to have been imposed correctly


Field Trials of the Portascanner AIRTIGHT 520

  • 16th December 2021
    • Coltraco Ultrasonics were by Bill Bordass, Building Scientist and Paul Jennings, Air Leakage Specialist to test the Portascanner® AIRTIGHT 520 alongside a Door Fan Blower Test at a Passivhaus build in London on 16th December 2021. The site was a “Passivhaus” build meaning that is should be about 10x more airtight than required by UK new-build regulations. At the Passivhaus Build, the Door Fan Test identified that the building just passed the required threshold meaning that there were some leaks that were unaccounted for. After a scan of a wall within the building, the Portascanner® AIRTIGHT 520 was able to identify a small leak, that a smoke pencil was unable to find.
  • 21st January 2022
    • Following the success trials at the Passivhaus build, Bill Bordass and Paul Jennings invited Coltraco Ultrasonics to test at the ATTMA Building Performance Hub. n a full-sized house. These trials followed testing at a recent Passivhaus property. Testing followed a Pulse Test and Door Fan Blower Test, both of which the Portascanner® AIRTIGHT 520 is designed to complement.The Portascanner® AIRTIGHT 520 performed outstandingly being able to identify and quantify leaks that had been found with traditional basic methods of leak detection such as thermal cameras, smoke pencils and anemometers, but most importantly find leaks that could not be found with any alternative method. A significant number of leaks were identified in window and door seals.
  • 18th March 2022
    • Coltraco Ultrasonics joined Dr Jesus Menendez, Managing Director, Zero Energy Passivhaus, and two building contractors to test Coltraco’s newest British invention, the Portascanner® AIRTIGHT 520 at a Passivhaus build in Manchester. Substantial air leakage was identified at the bottom of the door, with two areas producing particularly high readings. This indicated a “crack” in the bottom seal, and Dr Menendez suggested that the door had not yet been properly adjusted. This was confirmed by the site manager, who was impressed by the Portascanner® AIRTIGHT 520’s ability to determine that the door had not had a final adjustment. All who attended the trial were very impressed with the technology. The ability to identify, measure, quantify, and analyse the severity of individual leaks without the need for pressurisation, or the building being finished, a unique capability globally, was particularly noteworthy.
  • 20th May 2022
    • Coltraco Ultrasonics were invited by was invited by Mr Simon Young of AES Environment Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK to test and trial the Portascanner® AIRTIGHT 520 on Class II Biological Safety Cabinets. Testing of the Class II Biological Safety Cabinet was very successful. Portascanner® AIRTIGHT 520 Precision Generators were ideal for this application as they are small enough to fit easily inside BSCs and have adjustable power to suit a variety of large and small spaces.