Infra-red Control

User groups, whether it be hockey, figure skaters or recreational, all share one primary concern; ice quality. The difficulty is that each of these groups have distinct needs and therefore different definitions of what good ice quality is. For example, figure skaters choose to have the ice surface at or about 27ºF. whereby hockey players prefer 22-24ºF. range. Historically it has been almost impossible to satisfy the different expectations of these various groups due to the refrigeration control method. Until recently, most refrigeration contractors installed return brine stats or slab sensors (probe(s) located in either the floor or ice) to signal the compressors to turn on or off.

The return brine method allows for significant swings in the ice surface temperature because of the slow response to changes in heat loads. Often this is referred to as Thermal Lag. Slab and ice probes are faster in responding but are susceptible to damage from handling or the resurfacer.

Infrared Sensors, located above the ice, read and respond to changes in the surface temperature of the ice. The old methods are similar to maintaining the temperature of your home by controlling the flame temperature in your natural gas furnace. When you rent a segment of ice to a user group you are renting the ice surface, not the floor or the refrigerant below.

Infra-red Advantages

  • Ability to meet the needs by offering different ice surface temperatures for various user groups
  • Much improved response time to changes in ice surface temperature compared to traditional methods
  • Better ice surface management using manual, pre programming or P.C. driven software
  • Control your ice surface remotely, via modem operation

Arena operators or managers can have accurate information about the ice surface which, otherwise with traditional control methods, is purely speculative. Better information leads to better decision making when it is time to alter the rental schedule for whatever reason.

Infrared offers precise control within 1ºF. or C. of your ice surface temperature. Imagine setting and monitoring your ice surface temperature to within a tenth of a degree. Energy savings from a Red Eye can be achieved through automatic night temperature set up and the increased confidence of knowing exactly what your ice surface temperature is at all times. The Red Eye Infrared Ice Surface Controller removes the guess work allowing you to maintain a consistent ice surface. The Red Eye can be upgraded to include DDC controls to partially or fully automate your refrigeration plant.