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Foamular Chosen for New World Class Ice Rink

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The National Ice Sports Centre (NISC) is currently under construction in Docklands, Melbourne. In September Austech delivered 7,200 m of 50mm thick Foamular to the site to help with the enormous task of insulating the building.

The National Ice Sports Centre will be an Australian first. This innovative centre features two rinks catering for the sporting elite and ice recreation enthusiasts. Located in Melbourne's Docklands, next to the Southern Star Observation Wheel and Harbour Town Shopping Centre, the ice rink is also set to be the new home of the Olympic Winter Institute of Australia.

Ice rinks represent a unique environment where most insulation would simply fail. The extreme cold, moisture and high pressure cause insulation to under perform, but Foamular Metric 400 Extruded Polystyrene is designed for such areas. When laid under the ice, Foamular stops the cold temperatures seeping out through the floor; this helps to make the cooling equipment more efficient and extends its usable life.

Foamular has already been used successfully in ice rinks around the world, but its ability to handle extreme cold and moisture has seen it used extensively in cool-room and cold storage applications. When hot air hits cold surfaces it condenses into water and ice, causing problems for insulation, but Foamular minimises moisture absorption, minimising loss of thermal properties.

Ice rinks produce huge amounts of pressure. The ice, cooling equipment and people skating on the ice add weight, but this is nothing compared to the weight of the ice cleaner. The gigantic ice cleaners weigh many tones and concentrate that weight on a small moving area. Foamular's closed cell design inhibits compression, reducing compressive creep and prolonging the life of the structure.

Sustainability and energy efficiency was a big issue in this $58 million project. Two sheets of 50mm Foamular specified for the ice rink gives an R-value of R3.57. Foamular is guaranteed to maintain at least 90% of its thermal rating for 20 years, helping make this a sustainable project with a long lifespan.

The ice rink is scheduled to open in 2010, providing Australians with a world class ice sports centre which is dedicated to improving Australians accomplishments in the Winter Olympics for decades to come.

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