Slurry ice is a curious expression, lately emerging in industrial cooling applications, freezing and conditioning: it consists of a natural refrigerant, a sort of mud made by water and small ice crystals in suspension.
It is employed as a biphasic cold-vector fluid (liquid-solid) offering high thermal transfer efficiency due to the highest surface area available thanks to the suspended ice crystals, turning it into an innovative kind of fluid refrigerant. Slurry ice has increasingly several applications in process industry cooling, in sectors such as food & beverage, construction industry and medical, combining energy efficiency and lowered operative costs.
Strictly connected, and recently presented, it’s a promising project developed by an italian startup, that has designed and engineered an innovative green technology for the production of slurry ice and high quality snow working at temperatures above 0° C: the machine is called NeveXN (something that sounds like Snow4Ever, in italian language), an equipment able to create snow employing a completely sustainable process, and totally additive free.
The project started in 2010 from the study of Francesco Besana, a mechanical engineer and researcher in the field of solar air conditioning. The prototype realized is a snow gun, a snowmaking machine that creates snow using water and vapor, in a sustainable way and not depending upon external ambient temperature. In particular, NeveXN takes advantage from the thermodynamic cycle of water, in order to obtain slurry ice from water vapor, then turning it into snow by a crystallization process just adding salt.
The innovative green technology can integrate traditional snowmaking machines, snow cannons and snow guns, using a sustainable and efficient process, very interesting and value added because of the fact that it allows to create high quality snow also at temperatures higher than 0°: this is very important for tourism and winter sports in mountain areas, considering the average seasonal temperatures growing up. NeveXN offers a new snowmaking strategy in order to ensure the perfect conditions for winter sports during the whole winter season, not depending from weather and effective outdoor temperatures.