Axial Fan vs Centrifugal Fan


There are two primary varieties of fan, axial fans and centrifugal fans. Learn more about their type, benefits and uses.

The design and function of a centrifugal fan is very different from an axial fan. The difference between the fans, make them each suited for different applications and for costumer needs.


The first electrically powered fans, introduced in the 1880s, were axial fans. Blades rotating around an axis draw air in parallel to that axis and force air out in the same direction. Axial fans are named for the direction of the airflow they create. 

Axial fans create airflow (with low pressure) with a high flow rate, meaning they create a large volume of airflow. 


Invented in 1832 by military engineer Lieutenant General Alexander Sablukov, the Centrifugal fan, often called blowers are very different from the Axial fan. The pressure of an incoming airstream is increased by a fan wheel, a series of blades mounted on a circular hub.

The airflow created by centrifugal fans is directed through a system of ducts or tubes, which creates a higher pressure airflow than the Axial fan but a lower flow rate. Centrifugal fans also require a higher power input and creates a steadier flow of air.


  • Axial - Because of the low-pressure high-volume airflows, axial fans are best suited for general purpose applications. They excel at moving air from one place to another, cooling confined spaces such as computers, and cooling larger spaces such as work spaces.
  • Centrifugal - Because of the high pressure they create, centrifugal fans are ideal for high pressure applications such as drying and air conditioning systems. As all of their moving parts are enclosed and they also have particulate reduction properties that makes them ideal for use in air pollution and filtration systems.

Source: PTIPelonis