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Case Studies
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Ice is the mortal enemy of winter drivers, winter roads and the people who protect them both. For years, deicers have been used to remove ice from roadways, and epoxy overlays have been successful in protecting bridges from wear and water and chloride intrusion. Never before, however, have they been used in tandem.

SafeLane Ice Prevention Overlay stores liquid deicer and automatically releases it when needed. Unlike other anti-icing methods such as fixed spray systems, SafeLane Ice Prevention Overlay allows a single application of deicer to treat multiple frost events. Traditional anti-icing programs require that deicing chemicals be applied at every frost event, making budgeting and forecasting difficult. In these cases, bridge structures may already have frost formation and become dangerous to traffic.

By preventing ice before it forms, SafeLane Ice Prevention Overlay can limit expensive call-outs, overtime and, ultimately, accidents. And by using up to 75% less deicing chemical, it reduces the effect deicing has on the environment.

The patented technology behind SafeLane Ice Prevention Overlay was developed by experts in snow and ice research at Michigan Tech’s Keweenaw Center and is licensed and marketed by Cargill Inc. Studies conducted by Michigan Tech confirm that SafeLane has traction characteristics better than asphalt and equal to concrete.

Results of field tests using SafeLane Ice Prevention Overlay have been positive. For example, the product was applied to a bridge in Crandon, Wis., where icing conditions had contributed to multiple accidents each winter. In a trial conducted over the course of two winter seasons, no accidents were reported.

While the studies are still in progress, initial results are promising. Throughout the remainder of 2005, Cargill will be working with various departments of transportation to install the product at sites across the U.S. As of Sept. 14, 2005, there are installations in Crandon, Wis., Superior, Wis., and South Bend, Ind.

Overlay Init