ABOVE AND BEYOND ICE RINKS
For hockey fans and other ice rink enthusiasts, CALMAC's greatest-ever invention may be the low-emissivity Alumazorb ceiling. This energy saving product has become a fixture in an estimated 2,000 ice rinks around the world.
HOW ALUMA-ZORB WORKS
The patented Alumazorb® Low Emissivity Ceiling is suspended over the ice surface, acting as a radiant barrier between a warm roof and the cold ice below it. The result is dramatically reduced energy consumption —by up to 20-30 percent—and reduced operating expenses.
According to Peter Martell, Executive Director of the ISI Annual Ice Arena conference, CALMAC's "patented Alumazorb Low-Emissivity Ceiling dramatically reduces the energy consumption needed to maintain an ice surface and is heralded as ‘one of the most important advancements in the last 50 years."
Research by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) on the topic of energy usage in indoor ice arenas, confirmed CALMAC's findings that radiant heat transfer between the roof of a rink and the ice beneath it, is the single greatest factor behind heat gain in a typical arena.
According to the Aluminum Association, an aluminized ceiling acts as a highly efficient barrier to radiant heat transfer between these two surfaces, thus dramatically reducing the refrigeration load. Alumazorb ceiling radiates only 3 percent of the heat of the roof to the ice surface. Other materials used in roof construction radiate up to 90 percent of the heat to the surface below. The highly reflective aluminum ceiling offers an additional benefit. It increases ambient light levels in an arena by up to 50 percent.
CALMAC's founder Calvin MacCracken, who invented ALUMA-ZORB and who died in 1999, was awarded the Ice Skating Institute’s (ICI’s) Frank J. Zamboni Award—named after the inventor of the ubiquitous ice-resurfacing machine.
The next time you find yourself at an indoor ice rink, look up. If you don’t see Calvin MacCracken’s shiny ALUMA-ZORB Ceiling, you’ll know the rink is wasting large amounts of energy and money.