|Geothermal Heating & Cooling|
Geothermal and other renewable energy technologies can be a smart investment for those looking to adapt reliable comfort to their project, while lowering their energy bills and reducing their carbon footprint. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) geothermal heating and cooling systems are the most energy-efficient, environmentally clean, and cost-effective space conditioning systems available. Geothermal systems can reduce energy consumption by over 40% to 70% compared to oil, gas or electric based heating systems.
Geothermal heat pump systems operate by moving or transferring heat, rather than creating it, as in a conventional oil, gas or electric system. In summer the heat pump captures indoor heat from the air and transfers it to the earth. During the winter, heat is captured from the earth, compressed, and released inside the building. Inefficiencies in conventional air to air heat pump systems results from their having to overcome the widely fluctuating temperature extremes of outdoor air across the seasons. Geothermal systems increase efficiency through the capture and exchange of heat from the relatively constant temperature of the earth’s soil, rock and groundwater. And since every building in America sits on the ground, geothermal heat pumps offer the only renewable energy resource that is available at every building’s point of use, on-demand, and which cannot be depleted.
Various applications for exchanging this heat include, circulating fluid through a series of vertical or horizontal, buried pipe (Closed Loop System); withdrawing and re-injecting groundwater through multiple water wells (Open Loop System); or even circulating water through the same water well (Standing Column System). The type of system and design depends upon a number of factors including, the heating and air conditioning load, type of configuration, subsurface conditions, climate, space, landscaping, environmental conditions, and regulatory requirements.
A study by the EPA showed that geothermal systems have the lowest life-cycle cost of all systems available today. So that although the initial costs of a geothermal system can be higher because of the cost to install the ground source heat exchangers, the investment is paid back through low energy bills, low maintenance costs, greater comfort and safety, no weather-related maintenance, enhanced property and resale value; all while producing no combustion or indoor air pollutants. Geothermal heat pumps and air handler systems do not require noisy or unsightly outside condensers and are often small enough to fit in utility closets allowing for greater architectural design freedom.
EPA 1993. Space Conditioning: the Next Frontier. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. April.
Hughes, Patrick J. 2008. Geothermal (Ground-Source) Heat Pumps: Market Status, Barriers to Adoption, and Actions to Overcome Barriers. U.S. Department of Energy.
Taylor GeoServices (TGS) provides the project team with the tools to effectively design and install a geothermal exchange system; from the education process and feasibility evaluation, to site-specific optimization and design.
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FORMATION THERMAL CONDUCTIVITY TESTING
When there are large costs associated with the installation of a geothermal well field, why guess on the design criteria when you can know for sure.
Closed loop geothermal systems may use tens to hundreds of well loops, costing a considerable amount of money to install. Many projects will use a 'rule of thumb' when sizing well fields. Our licensed professionals can assist in optimizing the design costs of a new Geothermal system by completing a Formation Thermal Conductivity Test (FCT). Site specific information obtained from an FCT helps improve efficiency of a potentially undersized system, reduces cost in the well field design, and provides valuable foresight into potential drilling considerations.
Formation conductivity can have a relatively wide range, even within similar rock formations. Not testing could cost you by over sizing or under sizing your system.
TGS utilizes their own equipment and up to date analysis to evaluate your site. Don't leave the success of your geothermal project to someone's best guess. Find out how we can help you have a more cost effective and energy friendly source of heating and cooling.