For more than two weeks, the sports world focused its attention on the Russian city of Sochi as the best winter athletes from all corners of the world competed. All the while, screw compressors manufactured by Bitzer helped keep things cool in five of the Olympic stadiums.

The 26 Bitzer CSH Series and nine HSK Series screw compressors helped ensured that the refrigeration and air-conditioning systems provided by Finnish manufacturer Suomen Tekojää Oy worked seamlessly.

When it came to awarding the contract, the two companies were selected on the basis of their experience. Bitzer has more than 80 years’ experience with refrigeration and air-conditioning compressors, and Suomen Tekojää Oy has specialized in the the manufacture and construction of refrigeration and air conditioning systems since 1997.

“We’ve built refrigeration systems for more than 100 ice rinks in Russia and around 500 worldwide,” says Timo Mansikkaviita, managing director and owner of Suomen Tekojää Oy, “including several arenas for the Continental Hockey League.”

With so much industry experience, the Finnish manufacturer was the natural choice for the organizers of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games. The Sindelfingen, Germany-based compressor maker was selected because it could meet the special requirements of the five venues. At four of the five venues, the refrigeration and air conditioning systems had to be entirely disassembled and relocated. Suomen Tekojää Oy invested more than one and a half years of intensive work in the large-scale contract.

To ensure that everything ran according to plan during the Winter Games, the organizers had a backup system installed for each refrigeration system. If one unit failed, the second one was to spring into action.

“Double the reliability is our backup plan. The last thing we want is for hockey stars to find a rink of puddles rather than ice. That’s why, for instance, four CSH screw compressors ensure the optimal ice surface and six additional CSH compressors keep the air cool in the Shayba Arena,” says Ralf Gasper, Bitzer’s director of sales in Northern Europe and the Baltic States. “In Sochi, we saw the very best that sports has to offer. And Suomen Tekojää Oy and Bitzer made it possible, which we’re really proud of.”