A time-dependent numerical model of ice accretion on wires, such as overhead conductors, is presented. Simulations of atmospheric icing are made with the model in order to examine the dependence of the accreted ice amount on atmospheric conditions.
The results show that in wet growth (glaze formation) under constant atmospheric conditions, the growth rate increases with time until the process changes to dry growth. In dry growth (rime formation) the growth rate typically increases with time at the beginning of the icing process, but later decreases with time when the ice deposit has grown bigger.
The effect of air temperature on the ice load turns out to be rather small for the first 24 hours of icing in typical dry growth conditions, but it is important for long-term icing. The ultimate ice load may either increase or decrease with decreasing air temperature, depending on the other atmospheric conditions and on the duration of icing. These results largely explain the difficulties encountered in estimating the formation of ice loads by simple methods using the routinely measured meteorological parameters.