Unfortunately, this will be in sort of revere mode for a little bit until I can get all the pictures uploaded. This is a test project, the customer has agreed to purchase the supplies that were installed if it works. If it fails, all he is out is the $$ for the electricity. If it fails miserably, we have agreed to split the costs 50/50 on repairing any damage to the pier.
This customer has a pier and 2 boat hoists in a public lake. The local guy that removes the piers and boat hoists for the residents is going to be retiring in a few years. So, that leaves a void, either someone has to step in and do that or the residents on certain portions of the lake that have problems with ice will need to figure out a way to keep the ice at bay. The boat hoists were removed this year and last year for this customer, but the pier has stayed in the lake both years.
The project last year used a smaller compressor (2 cfm @ 0 psi), and 3 very fine bubble membrane diffusers that needed 0.5 CFM each to open. The water at the end of the pier is 40 inches deep, the water 12 feet from shore is 16 inches deep. I will post more pictures as I dig them up from the files and post them on the hosting website.
Last year that system was not "good enough" to keep the "ice holes" open around the pier any larger than roughly 6 foot diameter for both holes in the deeper water with the air temperature hovering around 0°F. The diffuser that was in the shallowest water under the pier was only able to keep an area ice free that was maybe 3' diameter. A larger compressor (10 cfm @ 0 psi) was installed and run for a while with the fine bubble membrane diffusers last year. The holes in the deeper water opened up to over double the small compressor size (12 foot), and the hole where the shallow diffuser was placed also doubled (6 foot) but that was still not enough to cover the whole pier plus the area that the boat hoists would occupy. This year the same larger compressor is being used, but medium bubble membrane diffusers that require 2 cfm each to open are being used with much better results (so far).
I am trying as much as possible to compare apples to apples, but so far Mother Nature hasn't really gotten with the program. It hasn't been as cold for as long of a time this year as it was last year (yet), but we still have the coldest part of the winter ahead of us.
I will have to go back and take some measurements to give some sort of scale to the images.
The following pictures were taken today, 1-12-2021 Larger compressor, medium bubble membrane diffusers.