+44 (0)28 4375 8045 info@polarice.co.uk

What is Dry Ice Blasting?

Dry ice blasting is a revolutionary cleaning method that uses small dry ice pellets as the blasting material. A jet of compressed air accelerates the dry ice pellets onto a surface.

Dry ice blasting can replace traditional blasting methods that use materials like sand, glass and plastic as abrasive agents. It can also replace a number of cleaning methods that use hazardous chemicals and solvents.

Dry ice is unique as a blasting material because it vaporises on contact with a surface. As a result the treated surface is left dry and clean, without any residue of detergents or blasting materials. Because the process is completely dry and non-conductive dry ice blasting is ideal to clean electric, pneumatic or hydraulic components.

In addition the system produces no waste products except the removed contaminant. You can then sweep or vacuum the dirt from the floor beneath the clean object or area. Dry ice blasting is ideal for removing coatings such as adhesives, varnish, oil, grease, coal dust, soot, mould release agents and bitumen.

What are the advantages of Dry Ice Blasting?

  • Dry ice blasting can allow for cleaning of production equipment while it is in operation. This removes the need for dismantling and costly downtime.
  • Dry ice blasting is non-abrasive, and is therefore suitable for use on easily-damaged surfaces like nickel, chromium and soft aluminium.
  • The process is dry, and produces no waste materials. Therefore cleaning can take place during short production shutdowns.
  • Dry ice blasting is ideal for cleaning machinery, electrical installations, electro-mechanical equipment, surfaces and moulds.
  • Dry ice is completely non-toxic. Because dry ice blasting uses no hazardous chemicals or solvents, it does not expose operators to hazardous fumes and other dangers during cleaning. Therefore it is a safer material to use.

The Dry Ice Blasting Process

In the dry ice blasting process, kinetic and thermal energy is transferred when the dry ice pellets strike the surface being cleaned. Dry ice and air combine to remove the unwanted material, leaving a clean surface free of any contaminant.

1. Kinetic Effect
Compressed air accelerates dry ice pellets to high speeds consequently fracturing the top layer of dirt/residue.
2. Thermal Effect
Once the dry ice penetrates the dirt/residue, the temperature of both the dirt/residue layer and the substrate decreases. The different materials contract unequally and as a result the adherence between them weakens. It is due to this thermal difference that the residue (dirt) is separated from the substrate.
3. Sublimation
After the dry ice makes its initial impact, it immediately turns from a solid to a gas. The volume expansion (by a factor of 700) causes a micro explosion that detaches the dirt/residue from the substrate.
4. After Blasting
As a result the substrate is left clean, dry and completely intact.

Main Office
Unit 3 Portarlington Ind. Est.,
R32 XR7Y
T: +353 (0)578623860

Dublin Depot
Unit 42 Airways Ind. Est.,
Dublin 9
D17 V672
T: +353 (0)18623730

Cork Depot
Unit 624 Harbour Point Business Park,
Little Island,
T45 RK26
T: +353 (0)214634607

Northern Ireland Office
Unit 47 CIDO Business Complex,
BT63 5WH
Northern Ireland
T: +44 (0)2843758045