Ice Plus® Production Optimizer

The questions and answers below are primarily for HVACR Contractors and Engineers seeking detailed information about the Ice Plus® Production Optimizer.  Consumers who are willing to “brave” the large amount of technical information are also invited to learn about the attributes, benefits and applications of the Ice Plus® system.  There are many energy efficient products on the market today, but one must be careful to choose the ones with the best performance from an economic, green/sustainability and high performance point of view.  The Ice Plus® system is one of the best for many reasons, as explained below.

What does the Ice Plus® technology do that is different from standard ice machine units?

The Ice Plus® system applies recovered harvest and melt water from the waste generated by an ice machine to super-cool the liquid refrigerant coming out of an air cooled ice machine condenser and then reuses that fluid to cool the hot gas refrigerant coming out of the compressor to enhance the refrigerant condensing cycle to improve ice machine capacities and efficiencies by as much as 50% or more, while reducing power consumption by 34% and heat of rejection to the air around the ice machine by 80% or more.  A standard ice machine rejects harvest water every time it goes through the harvest cycle, and the ice bin continually has ice melting because the bins are not refrigerated. Because the Ice Plus® is only re-using wasted cold water there is no additional energy required to accomplish this tremendous benefit except for the energy requirement of a very small pump.

Is it true that Installing an Ice Plus® unit on a new ice machine will void the warranty?

This is absolutely not true and is based on a lack of knowledge of legislation that protects the consumer from frivolous warranty voidances by manufacturers. The primary legislation regarding this issue is known as the “Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act.”

How is the Ice Plus® system considered to be green?

A product is deemed “green” when there is a carbon dioxide reducing energy savings that reduces dependence on fossil fuel. In fact, because of the increased efficiency produced by the Ice Plus® system, it reduces CO2 production by an average of approximately 1 ton per year for a typical 400 lb. per day ice machine.  The 1 ton of CO2 saved is equal to the CO2 emission for a car that consumes 100 gallons of gas.

Can the Ice Plus® system create any operational problems for the ice machine it is applied to?

The Ice Plus® system is engineered for a very low refrigerant friction related pressure loss and the line sizes are engineered for low friction related line loss as well, so that the benefits of the Ice Plus® system are not offset by any friction related operational problems, even when the Ice Plus® system is not operating while the ice  machine is operating.

What is the difference between friction loss related pressure loss and heat transfer enhanced pressure drop?

When an ice machine system has a high friction related pressure loss (too small a refrigerant line size for example), even though a pressure drop is seen at the liquid line port, the pressure seen by the compressor is actually higher, while reducing pressure due to better heat transfer actually results in a lower pressure at the outlet of the compressor.  Lower head pressure at the outlet of the compressor results in increased efficiency, whereas increased head pressure at the outlet of the compressor results in decreased efficiency.

Can city or well water be utilized for the water supply to the Ice Plus™ system?

City or well water can be utilized directly, but harvest and melt water is the preferred supply because of the much colder temperature of the harvest and melt water and the cost of city and well water.

How does increased capacity translate into energy savings?

When a system produces more capacity, the run time requirement of a system decreases, resulting in the ice machine system being off more of the time.

What does sub-cooling of the refrigerant do for the refrigeration cycle?

Every degree of sub-cooling results in an increase of system capacity of approximately 1¼%. This is one of the primary reasons why water cooled (or geothermal) systems are so much more efficient than air cooled systems.

What does de-superheating of the refrigerant do for the refrigeration cycle?

Rapid de-superheating of the refrigerant by means of water cooling results in a lower condensing head pressure and a cooler operating compressor. Lower head pressure results in lower power consumption by the compressor, and a lower compressor operating temperature results in a longer operating life expectancy for the compressor.  This is another reason why water cooled ice machine systems are so much more efficient than air cooled systems.

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