The Science Behind REALice®

The idea behind REALice® technology is to allow a fluid to self-organize into an ordered vortex movement.

Vortex movement is fundamental in nature.  It occurs in galaxies, tornados, mountain streams and human blood flow.

The REALice® technology is able to generate a well-defined multi dimensional vortex at a considerably lower pressure and flow than what can be achieved through other techniques.

How it Works

The inlet (Preformer) of the vortex generator provides a smooth outward direction of the flow
through tornado-like motion towards a set of well-defined channels.

After the preformer, the fluid is directed through a set of channels, each with vortex-forming geometry.  Each channel delivers a jet stream of vortex flow tangentially into a vortex chamber.


In the vortex chamber, the vortices from the channels are wound together, similar to how a rope is spun together from a set of threads.

A strong and stable vortex flow is formed inside the vortex chamber, causing a strongly reduced pressure along the vortex axis.




Macroscopic and microscopic gas bubbles in water will be pulled into the low-pressure zone in the vortex chamber.

The low pressure will cause them to expand and gather into large bubbles that can be easily extracted downstream of the vortex generator.


Removing the micro air bubbles

Effects on the Water

Viscosity decreased (water flows faster)0%
Heat capacity increased0%
Electrical conductivity increased0%

Where do the air bubbles go?

The micro air bubbles are released into the atmosphere. The REALice® technology separates the micro air bubbles from the water. The air and the treated water go into the resurfacer: water on the bottom, air on top.

REALice® De-aeration Animation
& Effects on hard water


In untreated water, limescale appears in the form of calcite, which has an angular shape on the limescale crystal. This means that it easily attaches to other limescale crystals, pipes and nozzles, forming limescale deposits. These limescale deposits obstruct the water supply and routinely have to be removed.

In water treated using the REALice® System, Calcite is transformed into Aragonite, which has a more rounded shape and consequently does not attach itself to other limescale crystals, pipes or nozzles.

Another advantage is that the treated water also acts upon old limescale deposits, which are reduced and eventually vanish after a period of use.

Watch the animation: 


Ice Quality

Of course ice quality is something that is after all largely subjective.

What could be noticed though is that better ice:


  1. produces less snow
  2. creates fine powered snow


What is important to mentioned that in the ice maintenance process not only the snow is removed with the ice machine but also the ice also shaved 1mm per round to eliminate the scars and make it nice and transparent again. Through ice crystal comparison it was shown that the ice made with REALice® treated water is stronger, more homogenous and has a higher heat capacity leading to reduced energy usage in ice rinks. With the ice crystal being bigger, the density of the ice increases.




Image shows ice crystals of normal ice (left) and REALice® (right) as seen in cross-polarized light. The scale at the bottom is in cm. (Source: Lulea Technical University, Sweden, May 2011).


How REALice works

Other Qualities of Vortex Treated Water

Besides removing the micro air bubbles, the vortex generator also decreases viscosity by 3% and 17%, depending on water quality and temperature.

Using vortex-treated water, you lower the viscosity of the water, entailing that it flows out more easily despite the temperature being lower.

Albert Einstein had shown in 1905, that gas bubble content affects the viscosity of water. As bubbles (undissolved gases) are removed, a decrease in viscosity can therefore be expected.

This changes the way water freezes, producing an ice that is more homogenous and strong, and has a higher heat capacity leading to less energy usage in ice rinks.

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