Dramatic reduction in ice buildup for aerospace and wind applications

December 4, 2020

Recent tests conducted at a third-party icing wind tunnel demonstrate the remarkable effectiveness of our coatings in preventing ice buildup. Our anti-icing coatings reduce ice accumulation by more than a factor of 4, greatly improving the aerodynamics of the blade in icing conditions. These particular tests were conducted with wind speeds near 165 mph at temperatures of -15 degrees Celsius (5 degrees Fahrenheit). The top panel shows a titanium blade coated with one version of Elemental Coating's proprietary formulations. The bottom panel is a control surface: a bare titanium blade. As you can see, the extent of ice buildup varies dramatically betwee the two, with very little ice remaining on the coated blade at the end of the test. The video is available here. While this test was conducted with a very specific aerospace application in mind for a fighter jet program, it is also interesting for many other applications, including wind turbines. For wind farms operating in northern latitudes, cold, icy conditions often lead to turbines having to be shut down for safety reasons, as the blades can be damaged due to uneven ice buildup and large chunks of ice can be thrown from the blades.

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