Case Study: XCEL Energy on Vadnais Sports Center and REALice

Xcel Energy case study on Vadnais Sport Center's REALice installation

Case Study: XCEL Energy on Vadnais Sports Center and REALice

October 26, 2019 – The Vadnais Sports Center in Vadnais Heights, MN installed a REALice system for their indoor twin ice arena more than two years ago. Electric and natural gas utility Xcel Energy offered a rebate to Ramsey County to install the energy-saving water treatment system that amounted to just less than 50% of the project costs.

Project snapshot

Savings and costs for the Vadnais REALice installation

XCEL Energy case study on Minnesota Arena using REALice

XCEL Energy case study on Vadnais Sports Center and REALice.

Recently, XCEL Energy circled back to Ramsey County’s Facilities and Sustainability Director, Ryan Ries, to ask him about their REALice experience. We are pleased to share details of that Case Study with you.

To download the case study on the XCEL Energy website, click here.

“What we learned is that it made a lot of sense to do it in a facility that has multiple sheets of ice that operate year round,” Ries says. “And the Xcel Energy rebate of almost half the overall cost was vital to making it work.”

Xcel put together a project snapshot to show the costs, rebates, ROI and energy saved.  This particular facility is expected to save 10,000 Therms of natural gas and 175,000 kWh of electricity each year with REALice.


Utility Incentives

Most public utilities offer custom incentives that will quicken your arena’s Return on Investment for going to REALice. Each incentive is specific to each arena, so although Ramsey County received $13,285 from Xcel Energy, that number might be less, or more, for your arena. When we calculate our Rink Savings Profile to show the amount of fuel (natural gas / propane / heating oil)  and electricity you will save, we use your data on age of equipment, floods per day, length of season, cost of utilities, etc. to determine your savings. As a rule of thumb, most public utilities will pay at least 5¢/kWh and 50¢/Therm based on the first year’s savings — but there are exceptions. We will reach out to your utilities on your behalf to find out if incentives are available and at what rate — that’s a service we’re pleased to offer!

utility logos

Some of the utilities who have offered incentives for REALice in the USA





Be Bold, Go Cold

REALice’s cold water resurfacing technology takes the place of using extremely hot water to resurface the ice. The patented, 3D-printed system is a brilliant example of fluid dynamics, using only the water pressure available at the arena to run the system, without any consumables needed, like filters/membranes or chemicals to remove the micro air bubbles that are trapped in the water. The resulting water freezes faster, demanding less load from the refrigeration system and delivers ice that is clear, dense and durable.

About Cypress, Ltd.

Established in 1990, Cypress Ltd. delivers efficiency, demand response, technical and business technology assessments and 24/7  customer support services.We support:

  • Investor and municipal owned utilities, associations, and special utility districts
  • The commercial, industrial, institutional/government, education customer markets
  • Energy value chain participants such as technology manufacturers, distributors, contractors and the engineering design community

For more information, please contact:

Tom Smolarek, President
Cypress Ltd.
7 Rue Delacroix
Coto de Caza, CA 92679
Toll free: (844) 464-8408

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