Journal article

Shallow geothermal energy: emerging convective phenomena in permeable saturated soils

A Bidarmaghz, GA Narsilio

GEOTECHNIQUE LETTERS | ICE PUBLISHING | Published : 2016

Abstract

Ground source heat pump (GSHP) systems efficiently heat and cool buildings using sustainable geothermal energy accessed by way of ground heat exchangers (GHEs). Thermal performance of GSHP systems is typically investigated considering either pure conduction in the surrounding ground or the hydrogeological conditions (i.e. groundwater flow). However, in saturated soils, the temperature gradient in the ground induced by the GSHP systems heating/cooling operations may result in natural movement of groundwater due to the changes in water density, which leads to an emerging natural convective heat transfer in the ground. This usually ignored convection may influence the thermal performance of GHE..

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