Field-Scale Experimental Analysis Of Helical Steel Piles As In-Ground Heat Exchangers For Ground Source Heat Pumps

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  • With the increasing concern of climate change and greenhouse gas emissions, innovative solutions to produce energy via renewable sources are needed. Geothermal energy has the potential to provide heating and cooling to residential and commercial buildings, however, its implementation has been stunted due to high initial costs, longer payback periods, and lesser return on investment. Helical steel piles, mainly used as structural foundations for buildings, have the potential to act as in-ground heat exchangers, producing higher efficiencies than conventional borehole systems at a lower cost. Eight helical steel piles, fitted with plastic tubing for fluid circulation, have been installed in an experimental site in Waterloo, Ontario. Cooling and heating tests have been conducted on the novel system to evaluate the capacity, power consumption and coefficient of performance. This paper presents the results of the peak and steady state capacity tests as well as the limitations experienced.

    Part of Proceedings of the Canadian Society for Mechanical Engineering International Congress 2022.

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    Article (Published)
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    Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International