March 25, 2018
March 25, 2018
March 27, 2018
Ground source heat pumps are a greener and cheaper alternative to the traditional heating and cooling systems for buildings. Instead of using as much fuel or electricity to heat and cool a building as a conventional system does, the ground source heat pump saves energy by using the ground or a nearby water source as a heat sink during the summer and a heat source during the winter. They tend to have more expensive initial cost but in the long run they save money and use less fossil fuels. Most heat pumps’ pipe configurations are buried under the ground where they will not be easily accessed at a later date. Because of this, the design of the configuration must be right the first time. This can be very difficult because the thermal property of the ground varies from location to location. The ground in one place might be mostly sand and a mile away the ground might be mostly clay, so it becomes very difficult to design configurations and they can be easily be oversized or undersized for the building depending on the thermal properties of the ground. This paper addresses an undergraduate research project that was done to test for the thermal properties of the ground before designing the configuration for a ground source heat pump. This was completed by five students using a low cost and simple system consisting of a pump, heater, tank, thermocouples, flow meter and data collector. The data was then collected using this equipment by flowing water through two different underground piping configurations. From this information a proper pipe configuration can be designed to best fit the needs of the building and configured to fit the available land on the property. This paper will address the methods used to collect the data as well as the analysis used to determine the feasibility of using a ground source heat pump. This will include an estimate of the cost savings along with the pay-back period and other considerations for a ground source heat pump.
Larsen, K. F., & VanWormer, A. A., & Shine, J., & Phillips, A. W., & Kriss, T., & Widell, C. (2018, March), An Undergraduate Research Project Testing the Properties of the Ground for the Design of Ground Source Heat Pump Systems Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Zone IV Conference, Boulder, Colorado. 10.18260/1-2--29600
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