A typical ground source heating system can supply radiators and underfloor heating
In the decade ahead every one will face profound changes in our lifestyles with regard to our energy consumption and water management. Climate change will make us re-evaluate the way we heat our homes and keep ourselves clean.
Ground source heat pumps provide a new and clean way of heating a building in the UK. They make use of renewable energy that is stored in the ground, providing one of the most energy-efficient ways of heating our home. They are suitable for a wide variety of building types and are particularly appropriate for low environmental impact projects and can be implemented in most of the UK.
By using a borehole or shallow trench heat collecting pipes in a closed loop are used to extract the stored energy, which when collected, can be used to provide space heating and domestic hot water.
The only energy used by a Ground Source Heat Pump is electricity which is used to power the pumps. A Ground Source Heat Pump will deliver 3 or 4 times as much thermal energy (HEAT) as is used as electrical energy to drive the system, this method is commonly called the COP (Coefficient Operating Performance).
Ground Source Heat Pumps work best with heating systems that are optimized to run at a lower temperature that is commonly used in UK boiler and radiator systems. As such they make an ideal partner for Underfloor heating systems.
Ground Source Heat Pumps have been widely used in other parts of the world, including North America and Europe, for many years. Typically they cost more to install than conventional systems, however they have very low maintenance costs and can be expected to provide reliable and environmentally heating for in excess of 20 years.
GSHP have a number of other environmental and operational advantages:
- Reduced purchased energy consumption resulting in low CO2 emissions
- High reliability (fewer moving parts, no exposure to weather)
- Long life expectancy (typically 20 / 25 years and up to 50 years for the ground coil)
- Low noise
- Low maintenance costs (No regular maintenance contracts)
- No boiler or fuel tank, resulting in no combustion or explosive gases in the household
- No flue or ventilation requirements, no pollution to local environment
Work in progress on a large GSH system