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Why choose Ice?
- Using Ice will significantly reduce your operating costs.
- Ice will not sublimate like dry ice. Under proper storage, it will virtually last forever.
- Ice reduces airborne contaminate levels compared to other blasting technologies
- Ice is a non-hazardous material unlike dry ice and all other blasting medias.
What is Wet-Ice Blast?
High pressure water blasting , also known as hydro blasting or pressure washing, uses up to 35 times more water and thousands of gallons per hour. High pressure water wash systems generally require the use of chemicals to enhance the cleaning process. Coulson Ice Blast uses no chemicals, thus worker health risks are eliminated and there is no contaminated water to be disposed of.
Coulson’s patented Wet Ice Blast technology has a low media input cost because it only requires conventional ice. In comparison to systems that use dry ice or sand, which has a significantly higher operating cost.
Blasting using dry ice, sand, plastic beads, or other media poses higher environmental impacts as there are additional materials to be disposed in landfills. Coulson’s Ice Blasting system is a sustainable and environmentally responsible alternative to other blasting technologies.
In the industrial cleaning sector, airborne contaminants are a prime concern when performing any cleaning task. Protective clothing and respiratory aid is necessary when using abrasive cleaning technology. Ice blasting is the only real dustless blasting method available on the market today.
Lead based paint abatement, which includes one of the most harmful substances to remove (lead) and consequently the most regulated, has the requirement for masks at an airborne exposure of 0.05 milligrams of lead per cubic meter of air. In product testing, the maximum outdoor airborne lead contamination using Coulson Ice Blast was less than 1/10th of the required maximum for unprotected work. Ice Blast is extremely effective in trapping airborne contaminants.
The cleaning method used in wet-ice blasting falls under three steps:
Bulk Removal: The stage where major contamination is first removed. Typically this is a physical removal by displacement (ie. Momentum transfer). This step is therefore best achieved with a material that transfers its momentum efficiently to contamination. Solids, like ice, have better momentum transfer than liquids as they do not flow around strongly adherent contamination.
Detail Cleaning: The stage where some form of mechanical agitation such as scrubbing or polishing is provided to remove minute quantities of the remaining contamination from the surface. By definition, scrubbing means two solids moving relative to each other under applied pressure. Water as a blast-cleaning agent therefore cannot offer this property.
Final Rinse: The removed contamination is rinsed away. Water is a universal solvent for this action. Many alternatives to ice blasting require an additional rinse on top of the blasting action.
Ice Blasting vs Dry Ice Blasting
The two existing methods of non-abrasive blasting use either dry ice or frozen water. The advantage of non-abrasive blasting is the low risk of damage to the surface being cleaned because the media will sublimate upon impact. In dry-ice blasting, carbon dioxide turns to gas upon impact. Coulson’s Ice blasting technology will result in a mist upon impact that traps contaminants and results in a liquid/ ice residue that is rinsed off the surface.
Dry ice blasting requires a purchasing process, as well as proper storage and handling. Dry ice must be stored in a well-ventilated location in a specially designed cooler. If dry ice is stored in an airtight container, the release of carbon dioxide can cause an explosion. Cleaning with dry-ice results in a release of carbon dioxide, which poses health hazards if the space is not well-ventilated at floor level. Proper precautions must be heeded, as high CO2 concentrations can result in dizziness and nausea, which are signs of CO2 poisoning.
Coulson Ice Blast at MD&M 2017