Carbis’ skid- mounted heat transfer systems are specifically designed for helipad snowmelt applications. Whether for personal use, hospitals, or other businesses, helipads must be dry and snow-free during inclement winter weather to prevent accidents. The hydronic system requires a great deal of energy to melt snow and ice. It uses a warm water-glycol solution to create a radiant heat that keeps the helipad surface at 35°F, just enough above freezing to stay clear.
Since snowmelt systems have low return water temperatures, a bypass mix loop is often installed to allow some of the supply water to mix to the return side of the boiler. This keeps the returning water temperatures high enough to prevent the boiler from condensing.
Carbis’ systems can be manually turned on using the HOA switch on the pumping skid control panel, or the system can be set in the Auto position, which will be started by a signal from the snowmelt’s sensor. Should the heat transfer system fail, or if there is no flow, the pumping skid has an alarm. The alarm notification de-energizes the motor starter, and then an audible alarm is activated.
It takes a lot of energy to melt snow, about five times the load it takes to heat a building of the same size. There are four load factors that the hydronic system must be able to tolerate in order to efficiently work. The first is the sensible heat load that’s needed to increase the temperature of the snow or ice from ambient temperatures to 32°F. Obviously, the lower the temperature, the higher the sensible load.
Once the snow or ice has reached freezing, 32°F, it must then be melted. This is the heat of fusion load and requires the most energy. The insulating effect of a layer of snow or ice has a large impact on heat transfer and evaporation at the snowmelt surface. As the mass temperature increases, evaporation will take place.
Heat loss to the atmosphere is the final phase of the snowmelt process. Once the snow starts melting, there will be areas in the snow cover that may not have had as much snow as other areas due to drifting or other factors. These areas clear faster, permitting heat losses to the atmosphere.
Before Carbis’ skid-mounted snowmelt systems are shipped from our facility, they are thoroughly tested to ensure they meet all requirements and that there will be an easy set-up once the system reaches your job site.
For more information on snowmelt systems for helipads, call Carbis at 1-800-823-0163 in the U.S. and (+1) 843-656-1318 for international calls.