Thursday, 26 July 2007

New York buildings use ice blocks to chill air

NEW YORK -- Some who operate skyscrapers and apartment buildings around New York City have found a cool alternative to traditional air conditioners.

They're using an energy-saving system that relies on blocks of ice to pump chilly air.

Not only are they taking some of the strain off the city's power grid, they're saving money and reducing pollution.

According to the state's Energy Research and Development Authority, an ice cooling system in Credit Suisse's offices in the Metropolitan Life tower in Manhattan is equal to taking 223 cars off the streets or planting 1.9 million acres of trees to absorb carbon dioxide from electrical use for a year.

Because electricity is needed to make the ice, water is frozen in large silver tanks at night when power demands are low.

The cool air from the ice blocks is then piped through the building.

At night the water is frozen again and the cycle repeated.

Officials say there are at least three-thousand ice-cooling systems worldwide.

full article

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