27 Jul '12, 3pm

The Efficiency Tango: A Deeper Look at Geothermal Heat Pump Efficiency

I am not sure what the author meant by "warmer climates". If it is a warmer climate, they should probably use an air source heat pump. The differentiating factor is how often is the outdoor temperature below the freezing point of water. Both air source heat pumps and ground source heat pumps use the same technology to extract heat from something. With both types of system the efficiency decreases with temperature of the outdoor air or the fluid in the ground loop. The fluid in the ground loop has a natural tendency to stabilize at the freezing point of water. Assuming the ground loop passes through water tables, as heat is extracted the water around the loop freezes and gives up a significant amount of heat (heat of fusion) as it freezes. Also, the thermal conductivity of ice is 3-4 times that of liquid water. Thus the efficiency of a ground loop system degrades as the tem...

Full article: http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/rea/news/article/2012...

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