Top Choice Material For Hockey Rink Sideline Expansion: Solid Polycarbonate Sheet

1. Introduction

What is a crucial element of a hockey rink? Besides the ice, the sideline is this transparent barrier that surrounds the rink and separates players and spectators. Its main function is to provide a protective shield for the audience, as field hockey is a high-demand sport in which players often go at high speed and impact against this safety fence.

Previously, contractors and suppliers used thick tempered glass panels for its construction; however, being a rigid material, upon impact, it could cause severe injuries to the players, and that is why, with time, more convenient material options were sought.

Today, we will tell you which material is ideal; keep reading!


2. What is a trending material for building a sideline ice rink?

The material most recommended by contractors and suppliers is solid polycarbonate panels. The reason? Tempered glass, the material previously used, was characterized by extreme rigidity, which posed a risk to players who could suffer severe concussions or other injuries upon impact with the glass panel.


3. Why choose solid polycarbonate panels instead of acrylic sheets?

Acrylic is a polymer with excellent qualities for field hockey rinks, such as high flexibility, transparency, and reduced thickness. At the time, it was the best alternative to tempered glass.

The problem, however, was that due to its composition, acrylic sheets could break and have a concise life span of only five years, so they had to be replaced continuously.

Polycarbonate, on the other hand, is a thermoplastic that is practically unbreakable yet offers 25% more flexibility than acrylic. This considerably mitigates the risk of concussions. Polycarbonate is also eight times more resistant to high-speed impacts, which avoids the need for continuous replacement. It has a useful life of up to 20 years.


4. What is the recommended thickness of a clear polycarbonate sheet?

For the construction of an ice rink, we recommend the use of a 4mm polycarbonate sheet; this thickness is sufficient because polycarbonate is a high-resistance plastic. It does not break or fracture due to impacts, which avoids the need to change it continuously and eliminates the downtime of the ice rink due to replacement or maintenance work.

Another plus point is that this thickness offers greater flexibility, which ensures strong protection against injury for players and spectators inside the field hockey rink. Finally, the 4mm polycarbonate sheet is ideal because it is lighter, which makes the installation process easier and faster. 


5. What are the advantages of using polycarbonate panels for spectators?

A clear polycarbonate sheet has excellent optical properties, with a level of transparency like glass and a light transmission of 95%, which ensures that spectators do not lose sight of the puck at any time.


Want to learn more about polycarbonate properties and other uses?

Stay tuned!