Lab Facilities

Icing Research Group has developed an "Icing Research Lab" that is facilitated by latest technology & modern equipment for carrying out experiments related to atmospheric icing

Icing in northern parts of the world, especially in the Arctic regions, affects different sectors of everyday life, be it the construction sector or aviation, automotive or power transmission. Ice accretion limits the use of certain technologies and materials that are applicable in normal climatic zones. In order to simulate ice accretion in the laboratory and imitate the natural icing conditions, Icing Research Group works in a continuously upgraded Cold Climate Lab that's facilitated by modern equipment and can be used for testing the down-scaled models of aircraft airfoils & wind turbine blades.

1) Portable Icing Tunnel

The icing  tunnel at Cold Climate Lab in UiT Narvik attributes itself with a test section dimension of 45.7cm × 47cm × 83.5cm and advanced air automizing nozzles producing droplets with MVD range of 20µm—80µm. The distinguishing feature of this icing tunnel is its easy portability for outdoor testing of different models. The maximum achievable wind speed is 10ms-1. The temperature control unit supported with HMI can maintain temperature at any value between -20.0℃ to +30.0℃. Other salient features are as follows:

  • Visual support: Digital imagery with live video support using GoPro Camera (with Bluetooth conection), FLIR A615 thermal IR camera (wired connection)
  • Hardware support: Data-Logger
  • Software support: MATLAB, IR Control, Labview
  • Spray-Bar System (Max air-water pressure capability: 6 bar)
Icing Wind Tunnel, UiT Narvik
Ice Thickness/Mass Measurement
Soft Rime Formation
Hard Rime Formation
Glaze Formation

2) Wind Tunnel

Faculty of Engineering Science & Technology of UiT also possesses a large, closed loop wind tunnel supported by a 3-axis balance system to measure lift, drag & pitch of model under observation. This balance system is also interfaced with Data Acquisition System (DAQ System) to directly record pressure readings & aerodynamic forces. Other specifications are as follows:

  • Test-section: 1.7m × 1.1m
  • Max wind speed: 55ms-1
  • Flow visualization (Smoke generator, PIV system)
Closed Loop Wind Tunnel-UiT Narvik

3) Cold Climate Chamber

Cold climate chamber comprises of 3 separate rooms equipped with chillers and frequency controlled ice generators. Cooling system is able to regulate temperature between -20.0℃ to +30.0℃ and is made functional by Human Machine Interface (HMI). All the rooms implement programmable thermocouples, weather sensors etc. CCTV camera and thermal infrared camera are available for live video monitoring. An advanced DAQ system is able to record data from multiple sensors during experimentation.


4)  CAE Softwares

Cold climate lab is used extensively for aerodynamic testing and is thus facilitated with advanced and latest softwares used worldwide for R&D purposes. The available state-of-the-art Computer Aided Engineering (CAE) numerical solvers include:

  • ANSYS, SolidWorks, Rhino.
  • TECPLOT, Pointwise, ICEM-CFD.
  • WindSim, Windographer, Global Mapper.


5) Field Ice Monitoring Station

An ice monitoring station is installed by Icing Research Group near Linken tower at Narvikfjellet (located at 1006 m.a.s.l). The objective is to collect longterm metreological dataset for educational & research purposes in order to study icing pattern and wind rose. It's a Campbell CR1000 based setup and currently comprises of 3 sensors & one camera (but may be expanded in future):

  • Heated ice load monitor (SAAB/Combitech) to record ice mass
  • Digital ice detector (T44 HoloOptics) to detect ice presence/absence
  • Wind-speed/direction sensor (Lambrecht EOLOS)

Data is recorded at the online server of ITAS Scanmatic Instrument Technology AS via GSM module. The observations include average temperature (℃), wind speed (m/s), wind direction (degrees), icing presence (0/1), icing mass (g), ice mass increment from previous value (g) & relative humidity (%RH). These observations have a resolution of 1 minute whereas camera automatically clicks a picture every 30 minutes. The station became functional on October 20, 2020 and has been successfully running since then with no major fault.

Icing Station At Linken-Narvikfjellet
Icing Station

6) Portable Field Spray Bar Icing System

Spray bar system at UiT is a portable, horizontal array spraying mechanism that can be used both indoor & outdoor for icing experiments. It can simultaneously house 6 air-water sparying nozzles that can produce droplets with MVD 20µm—80µm.

Spray Bar System To Create Droplets With MVD 20µm—80µm

Air & water are supplied from different pipes at pressure between 0 – 6 bar. Applications of spray-bar system include: ice accretion studies on small or medium size scaled models, effect of air-water proportional variation for ice formation, deicing system development etc.

 7) Thermal IR Camera Ice Detection System

Icing Research Group is utilizing its capabilities in devising techniques to identify different icing types based on emissivity and thermal detection. For this purpose FLIR A615 camera modified to sustain subzero icing conditions is being used along with IR Control software utility. The future studies in this arena may lead to reverse engineering i.e.: designing an anti-icing/deicing system after identifying a specific ice type using thermal IR.

Soft Rime, Hard Rime & Glaze Under Thermal IR
Outdoor Applications Of Thermal IR Camera

 8) Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) System

Spray-Bar System
Cold Climate Lab