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Idea for roller hockey floor

  1. Feb 5, 2009 #1
    my friend thought of an interesting idea and i was just wondering if it would be worth the money to do it, or if it seems practical.
    the problem with roller hockey is that the puck, even with wheels on it, doesnt slide too well. its pretty difficult to handle the puck on wood and its 10x easier to handle a puck on ice. his idea was to have little holes all throughout the floor that blow air out, like the same concept in air hockey, only for real hockey. This would be pretty cool to have, but would it cost a lot of money? (how expensive compared to constructing/maintaining an ice rink?) and would it be too much of a hassel with repairs?

    my other idea is to have circuits set up under the floor and when a switch turns on, a magnetic feild is created giving the floor a charge. and the puck could have the same charge. the strenght of the field would be just strong enough to make the puck slide. only problem is i think ppl have metal components on their skates. so idk, my friends idea is probably better
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 6, 2009 #2


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    Well, by my quick estimates, an ice hockey rink is at least 600 times larger in area than a typical air hockey table. The idea is feasible as far as I'm concerned. I have no idea what kind of power is needed to keep the ice frozen, but in comparison, running some low flow compressors for puck lift has to be in the same ballpark.

    A couple things that I think of off the bat: First, in order to have a safe playing surface, the holes would need to be very small to that your skates don't sink into them. This means there needs to be more them, but not a problem. The actual playing surface needs to be thick enough to take the maximum load, which people flying all over play could be substantial.

    So the surface itself would need to be somewhat thick. Pumping through thousands of tiny holes could cause huge pressure losses, and drive the inefficiencies through the roof.

    After quick google, it seams though good air hockey tables have CFM ratings of over 350, closer to 400. So, for your full-size rhink, you'll need around 250,000 CFM pumping through a whole lotta tiny holes.
  4. Feb 6, 2009 #3
    A problem I foresee is that air hockey pucks are quite light, which allows them to float on air. Using very light pucks in real hockey probably wouldn't work well. You'd probably have to use heavier pucks and higher pressure air.
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