ICEPLATE® Curve FAQ: plate carrier hydration, body armor cooling, safety vest, torture testing, etc.

ICEPLATE® Curve FAQ: plate carrier hydration, body armor cooling, safety vest, torture testing, etc.

1. What is ICEPLATE® Curve? 
A premium blow-molded hydration bladder, ICEPLATE® Curve is a water reservoir shaped like an armor plate (medium ESAPI profile) that cools/warms/hydrates you with 50 fl oz (1.5 L) of drinking water. ICEPLATE® Curve delivers 70 watts of cooling power when frozen or 52 watts of heating power when filled with hot water. When frozen, as your body heat melts the ice it creates ice cold drinking water in the process for hydration - ICEPLATE® gets lighter as you wear it. Drinkable ICEPLATE® Curves include a Source90 drink tube with a high-flow bite valve allowing for optimal water flow and easy access to your drinking water. The drink tube uses a quick-disconnect to make changing ICEPLATE® Curves quick and easy. ICEPLATE® Curve is made from 100% US-made, FDA-certified, BPA-free, High Density Polyethlene in Dallas, TX.

Above: ICEPLATE® Curve, a hardcell hydration bladder with cooling, heating and hydration capability. Conformal to the human body and in the shape of a Medium ESAPI armor plate. 

2. Why Medium ESAPI?
Two reasons: first, to provide a conformal fit with Medium ESAPI armor plates for the thinnest profile plate carrier hydration system on the market today that can also provide powerful body armor cooling and heating. Second, the Medium ESAPI geometry fits roughly 80% of the US population, making it far and away the most efficient geometry for us to use to provide the greatest benefit for the greatest number of people at the lowest cost. Complete dimensions and specifications on ICEPLATE® Curve can be found here on the ICEPLATE® Curve product page.

Our ICEPLATE EXO® Ultralight Ventilated Plate Carrier is only available in size medium so it can run ICEPLATE® Curve and Medium ESAPI armor plates in any configuration you want/need. Click here to see all of the different ICEPLATE EXO® configurations or click here to see all the different ways to wear ICEPLATE® Curve.

Click here to learn more about the differences between SAPI vs ESAPI plate geometry.

3. Why does ICEPLATE® carry water instead of PCM (Phase Change Material) like those blue ice packs at the grocery store?
ICEPLATE® Curve carries water because it has the greatest energy storage density of any element on the Periodic Table at 333 kJ/kg. You can also drink it! By contrast, the Paraffin-based (petroleum) PCMs you’d find in commonly available blue icepacks or the plant-based PCMs you'd find in Yeti Ice or even our own ICEBLOQ, have an energy storage density of about 220 kJ/kg. Water is 30% more powerful than any other PCM you’ll find anywhere on the market. Did we mention you can drink it? Water is simply the most powerful and most efficient way to cool the human body, however, you can fill your ICEPLATE® with PCM on your own if that is your thing.

4. What is the ICECAP QD Water Bottle Adapter? Why is it threaded for Dasani water bottles? Why not SmartWater?
Coca-Cola sells more than 315,000,000,000 bottled beverages around the world, every year. This makes their 28-410 thread standard, the same one found on our ICECAP and Freezer Cap, the most prolific on earth by a large margin. This gives you the highest probability of being able to create an improvised hydration bladder anywhere in the world using our ICECAP, Source 90 Drink Tube, and any bottle from one of Coca-Cola's more than 500 beverage brands. Also, we designed ICECAP in 2017, so before they decided to go crazy with their woke policies. ICECAP and Freezer Cap are interchangeable since they have the same thread standard. 

5. Will you make ICEPLATE® Curve in larger sizes? Different profiles like Swimmer/Shooter Cut?
Possibly. We have plans for new ICEPLATE® designs, but the development cost is extremely high so we have to be careful and deliberate about the products we build next to make sure there is sufficient market size and demand to support the business case. We do not currently have a timeline for these new models and we do not comment on future designs or releases to protect against intellectual property theft, most frequently and egregiously perpetrated by the People’s Republic of China, but some US companies also copy our inventions. Since ICEPLATE® Curve is mostly worn on the back, we do not currently have plans to make a Swimmer/Shooter Cut ICEPLATE® Curve because it would only serve to reduce water volume and cooling power. For our enterprise Safety + Devices customers who do wear ICEPLATE® Curve on the front in our Safety Vests, there is a possibility we'd make a Swimmer/Shooter Cut in the future, but so far, those customers all tell us they GREATLY prefer more cooling power/longer cooling duration over a Swimmer/Shooter Cut. Should those circumstances change, however, we would certainly build one.

6. Where does the 140 watt number come from? Who did the research?
A pair of ICEPLATE® Curves pack a staggering 140 watts of combined cooling power (70 watts per ICEPLATE® Curve) when frozen. Thanks to research funded by DoD, and conducted by Stanford University, TRADOC and the CDC over 25+ years, we know this is how much power is required to prevent heat injuries in CBRNE/MOPP gear in even the hottest climates on earth. Here are links to articles from our IceAge Insights blog that take a deeper dive into human thermoregulation, heat injury prevention, and body armor cooling:

How The Human Body Cools Itself

How to Prevent Heat Injuries in Military Training

How to Stay Cool Under Body Armor: the Science Behind Body Armor Cooling for Military and Law Enforcement

The Physics Behind ICEPLATE® Curve

Thermal Transmission Properties (FLIR Images)

ICEPLATE Unveiled at the AUSA Global Force Symposium 2016 

Energy transfer is bidirectional, meaning ICEPLATE® is perfectly suited for cold weather conditions by filling it with hot water. Filled with hot water, IcePlate® delivers 52 watts of heating power per IcePlate.

Using IcePlate in Winter with Hot Water Filling

7. What does 140 watts mean to me?
To equate the amount of energy a pair of ICEPLATE® Curves hold to batteries, we use Ohm’s Law, which requires two known values (in this case watts and voltage) to determine the mAh and quantity equivalent.  We achieve this by first dividing the watts of the ICEPLATE® Curves by the voltage of the battery to receive an Amps rating. The second step is to divide the amps by the milliamp rating of the battery to determine the quantity of batteries the ICEPLATE® Curves are equal: 

18650 Battery is 3.7 volts / 2600 mAh capacity = 14 ea batteries

CR123 battery is 3 volts / 1500 mAh capacity = 31 ea batteries

In other words, a pair of ICEPLATE® Curves store roughly the same amount of energy at 31 x CR123 batteries or 14 x 18650 batteries! 

8. How was ICEPLATE® born?
During a search for an armed suspect in Pine Valley, CA. Click here to read the full details of our Origin Story.

9. Will you make an ICEPLATE® cooling solution for Military and Law Enforcement working dogs?
Yes. Once we get a launch customer. In order for us to build our Military and Law Enforcement Working Dog Canine solution, we need a unit customer with the following characteristics:

1. Allocated budget/authorization for a specific requirement for an ICEPLATE® Canine solution.
2. Authorization to allow us access to the unit dogs for test fitting during development.
3. If you would like to be a launch customer for our ICEPLATE® Canine solution, click here to contact us.

Why do we need this? Demand for our solutions is at record levels and is far outpacing our production capacity, despite tripling the size of our team and making massive investments in our manufacturing since moving to Knoxville, TN from Loudoun County, VA in February 2023. As a result, we need a launch customer to move this project to the front of the line.

10. Will you make an ICEPLATE® harness for horses?

11. Will you make smaller size ICEPLATE®? Side SAPI ICEPLATE®?
We probably will not make a smaller ICEPLATE®, but we will make a smaller cooling, heating, and hydration system soon.

12. Where is ICEPLATE® manufactured and what is it made from?
ICEPLATE® Curve is 100% American made from American materials (FDA Certified, BPA-free HDPE). Full disclosure: we do have counterfeits that are made in the PRC (People’s Republic of China) that violate our intellectual property. They are a perfectly viable option where innovation, safety, quality and American jobs are not a priority. But, like Justin's Dad used to always tell him: “You don’t always get what you pay for, but you definitely don’t get what you don’t pay for.' 

13. Who can use ICEPLATE® Curve?
Anyone! From Military, Law Enforcement, First Responders, hikers, drive thru/QSR teams, motorcycle riders, people mowing their lawns, Range Safety Officers, Crossing Guards, CBRNE/HAZMAT technicians, ski patrol, cold storage, critical cold chain technicians, oil & gas fields, ramp workers, the possibilities are literally endless.

14. How do you wear ICEPLATE® Curve?
Easy! Here is an article from our IceAge Insights blog with full details on all the ways you can wear ICEPLATE® Curve.

15. Can ICEPLATE® Curve be used for plate carrier hydration?
Absolutely. Here is an article from our IceAge Insights blog with complete details on our two best ICEPLATE® MOLLE Sleeve systems for plate carrier hydration: IMS vs IMS Pro.

16. Can I mount ICEPLATE® to my issued body armor?
Yes! Click here for details.

17. Can ICEPLATE® Curve be used for body armor cooling? Heating?
Absolutely! That is what it was originally designed to do. Click here for more details to find out why ICEPLATE® is the most effective heat injury prevention tool for military and law enforcement training.

18. Does ICEPLATE Condensate?
In humid climates, yes, by design. Generally speaking, ICEPLATE® Curve does not condensate in arid climates, but results will vary based on exact weather conditions. However, it is important to keep in mind that the alternative is hot sweat because of the environments where ICEPLATE is used in frozen format. While we can't make the decision for you and we would never tell you what to do, we can tell you that hundreds of thousands of people, including us, have chosen cool condensation over the hot sweaty mess option. That said, most of our Vests and Sleeves will greatly mitigate condensation when IcePlate is used with them. It is also important to remember that condensation is a byproduct of the specific microclimate in which you find yourself and that the face that ICEPLATE® Curve is designed for heat transfer. If we designed ICEPLATE® Curve to be insulated like a vacuum insulated water bottle, there would be no heat transfer and thus no conductive thermoregulation...which is why ICEPLATE® Curve exists in the first place.

19. Why don’t you make a Neoprene Sleeve for ICEPLATE® Curve?
Neoprene is an insulator, meaning it slows the transfer of energy from one object to another. It would insulate the ICEPLATE® Curve, keeping it colder for longer but it would also insulate YOU. To get the full benefits of ICEPLATE® Curve, it should be worn under armor and against the body. If we added a sheet of Neoprene in between you and your ICEPLATE® Curve it would not matter how cold the ICEPLATE® Curve is, you would not get the full cooling effect. We use our ICEPLATE EXO® Laminate to optimize thermal exchange between your body and IcePlate Curve.

Think about having an ice cold drink in a koozie on a hot day. Can you feel how cold your drink is?

20. How much does ICEPLATE® Curve weigh when full?
An empty ICEPLATE Curve weighs approximately 0.75 pounds or 12 ounces. The weight of water is obviously fixed at 8.33 pounds per gallon at room temperature. This means that 50 fluid ounces of water weighs 3.26 pounds. When an IcePlate Curve is filled with 50 fluid ounces or 1.5L of water, it will weigh approximately 4.01 pounds at room temperature. Thanks to the QD functionality, the weight of the ICECAP is slightly more than a standard 28-410 cap you'd find on a bottle of Dasani water. The Source90 Drink Tube weighs 4.58 ounces or 0.13 kilograms.

21. What is the Q-Hex Baffle in the center of the ICEPLATE Curve and why is it not symmetrical front to back?
The Q-Hex Baffle maintains ICEPLATE® Curve's structure during the freezing process, preserving low-profile geometry, and decreasing audible signature in the field. If you'd like to see how the Q-Hex Baffle performs when it comes to audible signature compared to legacy soft hydration bladders and other hard hydration sources like Nalgene water bottles, click here to watch a video of the empirical testing we did to find out how loud hydration systems really are.

22. How durable is ICEPLATE®? 
Great question! TLDR: extremely durable. Click here to see videos of all of the torture tests we've conducted over the years. 

23. Will ICEPLATE® fit in my issued plate carrier? 
Yes. As long as your plate carrier can accommodate a Medium ESAPI armor plate, ICEPLATE® Curve will fit inside the plate bags. That said, ICEPLATE® Curve is not armor and should never be used in lieu of a ballistic armor plate. ICEPLATE® Curve dimensions and specifications can be found on the product page here.

24. Why does ICEPLATE® hold 50oz/1.5L? Why not 2L or 3L?
When the Army first approached us about building what would become ICEPLATE® Classic, our goal was to deliver 140+ watts of cooling power over 2+ without adding any weight to the warfighter load out. Lady luck shined upon us that day in January 2016 when we came up with the idea for ICEPLATE® because a Medium ESAPI profile happened to hold 50 ounces of water, which, when frozen carried 70+ watts of cooling power. This meant that if a user wore two ICEPLATES® (front and rear), then we would hit the Army's target of 140+ watts of cooling power over 2+ hours since soldiers already carried 100 ounces of water in hydration bladders with NSNs. This also meant we achieved the second objective the Army set for us: deliver 140+ watts of cooling without adding any additional weight. 

As it turns out, the 70 watts of cooling power found in ICEPLATE® Curve has been shown to reduce hydration requirements by 50%. This means that a single ICEPLATE® Curve, carrying 50 ounces of frozen water ice, packs the same hydration power of 100 ounces of regular water from a conventional hydration bladder. Half the weight for the same amount of hydration capability...let that sink in for a second.

To read more about the science behind body armor cooling and how the thermoregulation systems of the human body, we highly recommend checking out these two articles from our IceAge Insights blog on human performance:

 25. Why don't you make an ICEPLATE® Curve with exit ports on both the left and right side?

Easy! This would defeat the purpose of our patented TotalDrain Technology. If we made both exits at the same level, there would be no low point and water would not drain freely and easily using gravity, to run ICEPLATE® Curve dry and keep it more sanitary. If we made two angled drains on the left and right side the way the illegal PRC counterfeits do, then water would get stuck in each of the low points, again creating weight, efficiency and sanitation hazards. 

26. Can I add electrolyte powders or tabs to my ICEPLATE® Curve?

Yes! We personally use and recommend Cerasport, Nuun, and LiquidIV. All work fantastic in ICEPLATE® Curve, just make sure you clean both your ICEPLATE® Curve and your Source90 Drink Tube after each use.


  • Qore Performance

    Hi Sam,
    Correct – we use Source Drink Tubes exclusively, so any CBRN compatible options that Source makes are compatible with our Source90 Drink tube.

  • Sam

    It looks like y’all use the source hydration tubes on here, are there any CBRN compatible options?

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