If you saw the ice at the Oilfields Regional Arena in Black Diamond, Alberta, you would never imagine the ice plant producing such great ice is what most ice makers would consider underpowered or “sub-par”.
But it is — and has been long before Les Quinton became the Town’s Parks and Recreation Manager back in 1997. Their sub-par mechanical room is one of the reasons why Quinton has been on a quest to make the ORA as energy efficient as possible. He’s been way ahead of the curve in transforming the ice barn from an energy-hogging black hole to an energy producer, logging two months of net-zero consumption in 2017.
As we look back on 2017, we have a great deal to be proud of, are grateful for -- and look forward to a busy 2018. With more than 500 ice pads using REALice-treated water to make their ice worldwide now, we're getting more word-of-mouth recommendations and keep hearing amazing stories from our customers of how REALice is making a difference in their arenas they would never have imagined. Here are some highlights from REALice USA.
December 20th, 2017 – Today marks the 100th anniversary of the National Hockey League. To help celebrate the NHL’s first century, an outdoor game was held at Ottawa’s TD Place Stadium this past Saturday night as a part of its Winter Classics series. There, under the bright lights of the transformed football stadium, the Montreal Canadiens played the Ottawa Senators in the Scotiabank NHL 100 Classic, on two-inch thick ice made with REALice-treated water.
FMC Ice Sports (Facility Management Corporation), the operator of 24 indoor ice facilities in Massachusetts, has ordered two separate REALice Systems for indoor ice facilities in Burlington and Natick. The Burlington Ice Palace and the William L. Chase Arena are both busy, year round, single-pad surfaces averaging between 10 and 13 resurfaces per day. By going to REALice's cold water resurfacing technology, these two arenas are expected to have a combined consumption reduction of over 5,500 therms of natural gas and a reduced electricity usage of around 200,000 kWh per year.
"Dry shaves" are part of the standard REALice maintenance routine. More arenas are dry shaving their ice first thing each morning to set them up for success all day long.
Steven Wolf, Spartan Arena's Director of Athletics, says they've made it a best practice to try and dry shave their ice first thing each morning.
"That sets us up for great ice all day long," he says.
Excess condensation showing on the glass of the boards. Every time the ice gets flooded with extremely hot water, more humidity is added to a rink.
The humidity in a rink is always changing. The outside weather conditions, the number of spectators and players, open doors, gates and garage doors are all contributors to humidity, as are longer seasons with the ice staying in all year round. Of course, using extremely hot floodwater, used many times every day to resurface the ice, doesn't help.
Operators are striving towards optimal humidity levels of 50-55% - some even without a de-humidifier.