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What do you guys think?

by the end of the summer, in town here they have an air handler that uses canal water but that also heats up by the end of the summer. My shallow well has unlimited water and it is 56 degrees at the end of the summer. I tell people that cooling with well water is like solar heating except it's like the sun is out all the time. You are right about the radiant cooling effect, comfort wise it is awesome, the equalivant of radiant heating. Thanks, Bob Gagnon

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Comments

  • About this...

    You have 4 cisterns in the ground. Each holds 3000 gal of water. You want to employ that water directly in the cooling and heating of a structure. So you want to cool it a bit in the summer (60*)and warm it a bit in the winter (85*). Do you A. Insulate them. B. Not insulate them. C. insulate two for warm and leave two in ground contact for cool? or D. Leave them uninsulated and not use them for heat at all?
  • Tom Hopkins
    Tom Hopkins Member Posts: 552
    Geothermal

    How deep and how far apart are the tanks.
  • A.J.
    A.J. Member Posts: 257
    Are you sure

    that the tanks are going to have water through out the whole year ?
  • Yes,,,

    They are supposed to collect rainwater but will include provisions to keep them full year round. From what I've seen so far I have no depth but they appear to be nearly touching in the plans.
  • Brad White
    Brad White Member Posts: 2,398
    I have to first ask, what is

    the load? Just because I am so darn curious...

    :)

    Also, what is the source of your energy? Ground source by passive conduction or active storage of energy you generate?

    If it was recirculated or pumped and dumped is a good thing to ask. Recirculate and you dilute your temperature pool. Dump it and how is it replaced at what cost? Is it used as a condenser source (WSHP or GSHP)?

    The insulation question depends on these things. The earth is, depending on where you are, about 50 to 60 degrees below frost-line. You will not "make water" any warmer or colder than those temperatures. Fine for storing cool water or condenser water but if you are making 85 degree water, the heat will dissipate maybe faster than you can use it. Higher temperatures even more so. If the soil is wetter it is more conductive so the heat loss will be faster. If dryer, less conduction.

    If using it as conventional cooling (via an evaporator) 60F is too warm to dehumidify. If for heating, it would have to be a very low temperature system as you know. Thus the use as a condenser source in a water/ground-source heat pump system makes some sense to me. Is this the case? The range of temperatures required tend to be 60 for heating (lower with extended range units) and 90 on cooling with those systems so maybe you are in there.

    With 12,000 gallons at say 3 GPM per ton and a 4-ton load that is about 16.7 hours of total through-put, full exchange.

    If you are counting on this volume as a cooling condensing source and your ground temperature is in the 50-60F range below frost-line, I would not insulate. When in cooling mode the tanks will at least dissipate some of that heat to the ground.

    If during heating mode you want to charge the tank with heat (to get it above 60) from another source, I would think about insulating at least over the tops and let the earth below be a stabilizing force. I hope the pit is dry though!
    "If you do not know the answer, say, "I do not know the answer", and you will be correct!"



    -Ernie White, my Dad
  • My answers in caps!

    the load? Just because I am so darn curious...

    5 TONS/100,000 BTUH

    :)

    Also, what is the source of your energy? Ground source by passive conduction or active storage of energy you generate? I'M THINKING SOLAR SUPPLEMENTED BY AIR TO WATER HP

    If it was recirculated or pumped and dumped is a good thing to ask. Recirculate and you dilute your temperature pool. Dump it and how is it replaced at what cost? Is it used as a condenser source (WSHP or GSHP)? IT WILL BE HELD BUT USED FOR FLUSHING TOILETS WASHING CARS ETC. NOT POTABLE

    The insulation question depends on these things. The earth is, depending on where you are, about 50 to 60 degrees below frost-line. You will not "make water" any warmer or colder than those temperatures. Fine for storing cool water or condenser water but if you are making 85 degree water, the heat will dissipate maybe faster than you can use it. Higher temperatures even more so. If the soil is wetter it is more conductive so the heat loss will be faster. If dryer, less conduction. EXACTLY MY DILEMMA I'D LIKE TO USE IT FOR COOLING/STORING COOLING IN THE SUMMER AND HEAT IN THE WINTER. USING IT AS CONDENSER/EVAPORATOR WATER IS AN IDEA BUT REALLY COMPLICATES THE THING AND HENCE THE PRICE. gREAT FOR STORING COOL WATER, NOT SO GREAT FOR STORING HEATED WATER.

    If using it as conventional cooling (via an evaporator) 60F is too warm to dehumidify. If for heating, it would have to be a very low temperature system as you know. Thus the use as a condenser source in a water/ground-source heat pump system makes some sense to me. Is this the case? The range of temperatures required tend to be 60 for heating (lower with extended range units) and 90 on cooling with those systems so maybe you are in there.

    YES, THE WATER WILL BE CIRCULATED IN THE RADIANT SYSTEM, WE WILL HAVE SUPPLEMENTAL AIR HANDLERS WITH COILS TO DEHUMIDIFY AND ADD HEAT IF NEEDED

    With 12,000 gallons at say 3 GPM per ton and a 4-ton load that is about 16.7 hours of total through-put, full exchange. WE ARE CONSIDERING 2 OR 3 CLOSED LOOP WELLS TO COOL THE WATER AND WILL SET IT UP TO RUN THE PUMP DURING OFF PEAK HOURS, PLUS WE'LL HAVE THE ABILITY TO COOL THE WATER WITH THE CHILLER IF NECESSARY

    If you are counting on this volume as a cooling condensing source and your ground temperature is in the 50-60F range below frost-line, I would not insulate. When in cooling mode the tanks will at least dissipate some of that heat to the ground. SIMILAR IDEA BUT I WANT TO RUN THE WATER THROUGH THE FLOORS (CONCRETE ON WOOD FRAME) AND I'M THINKING THE TANKS IN CONTACT WITH THE GROUND IS A GOOD THING FOR THIS. BUT NOT FOR THE HEAT. AGAIN, THE DILEMMA, ERRR, CHALLENGE. ;)

    If during heating mode you want to charge the tank with heat (to get it above 60) from another source, I would think about insulating at least over the tops and let the earth below be a stabilizing force. I hope the pit is dry though! WHAT IF WE WERE TO POUR A CRAPLOAD OF ROCK AND CONCRETE DOWN THERE FIRST AND SET THE CISTERNS ON THAT AND USE IT FOR A BIG HEAT SINK? INSULATING THE TOP WOULDN'T BE A BAD THING HEAT OR COOL.

    THANKS BRAD, SORRY FOR ALL THE YELLING. :)

  • Cool enough to dehumidify

    I have a similar system in my house. I pump 56 degree well water first through a large fan coil unit, which condenses a lot, then I send the slightly warmer water through my radiant system. It works great, my floors stay about 68 degrees and the fan coil lowers the humidity, cools and moves the air around, using only energy from a 12' deep point driven well. The house stays around 70, even when the outside temp approaches 100 degrees. Thanks, Bob Gagnon

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  • Nice!

    That's an interesting approach. I've seen it with done just an airhandler/river water and it didn't work so well but combining it with radaint makes it much more viable. Thanks for the ideas!
  • I'm thinking,,,

    along with the heat sink idea, if I only heat the tanks with solar then any heat loss to the ground would be fairly cheap heat. To heat it by mechanical means and then lose it to the ground doesn't make sense. I could use the solar to at least temper the water in the winter and boost it's temp through a HX upon leaving the tank(s)
  • Thanks Bob...

    I appreciate the thumbs up!
This discussion has been closed.