The Dow Chemical Co. recently announced that its heat-transfer fluids will be used at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, to help maintain the temperature of the ice in three of the ice venues and the practice arena.
Dowtherm SR-1 will be utilized in the Gangneung and Kwandong Hockey Centers, the Gangneung Oval, and the practice arena for short-track skaters. The fluid is chilled by refrigeration equipment and then circulated through a network of pipes beneath the rink floor. The cold solution causes a layer of water to freeze into a smooth sheet of ice by extracting any heat that is collecting on the floor. The fluid is then circulated back to the refrigeration system, where the heat is separated from the fluid and ejected.
Used in ice rinks as well as in food industry refrigeration and heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems, Dow heat-transfer fluids offer fast freezing, lower operating and maintenance costs, and corrosion protection for metal pipes.
"Winter sports require different ice temperatures so that the athletes can compete to the best of their abilities," said Phillip Oh, Asia-Pacific commercial director for Dow Olympic and sports solutions. "Our heat-transfer fluids offer reliable, economical and sustainable solutions for long-term performance protection and ice rink efficiency."
At the Gangneung and Kwandong Hockey Centers, the ice needs to be harder and more compressed than the typical skating rink so that it can withstand the constant back-and-forth from players and referees. Long-distance speed skaters who will be competing at the Gangneung Oval also require harder ice in order to facilitate easier gliding with less resistance.
On the other hand, at the practice arena, speed skaters on short tracks need softer ice so they can have proper grip. In addition to maintaining the temperature of the ice, inhibitors in Dowtherm are formulated to protect the pipes from corrosion and help lubricate the pumps, easing the maintenance and upkeep of the piping at the Olympic venues.
"Top-performing sporting venues are supported by the best of science and technology," said Louis A. Vega, Dow's vice president of Olympic and sports solutions. "Dow's game-changing solutions not only create some of the best conditions for athletes to perform at their best, these solutions also help in the long-term maintenance of the Olympic venues."
For more information, visit www.dow.com.