standing column well

Discussion in 'Standing Column Well (SCW)' started by juan, Jan 27, 2009.

  1. juan

    juan New Member

    Research Organizations

    I'm wondering if some well-informed person could post a link or two to organizations actively doing geo-exchange research.
  2. Palace GeoThermal

    Palace GeoThermal Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

  3. juan

    juan New Member

    Look like good leads, thanks. Just in case anyone is interested, here is what I am looking for.

    I have been wondering if anyone has considered the possibility of using existing water service mains as a ground loop by means of batch processing. The idea would be to draw water gradually from the service line through a heat exchanger and into a storage tank during the conditioning on cycle, then quickly pumping it back into the main to absorb or reject ground heat during the off cycle.

  4. cdhand

    cdhand Guest

    2 lines

    I think you could have a city main with 2 lines and an extra meter on your geothermal unit. the city could charge a set fee for this service and back out the water usage for the geothermal. Say that your main water line has 45 psi into your house it could go in through the second meter then into your geothermal unit and leave your house and go back into the second line with a lesser pressure. If this would work you would make up the fee with no pumping cost and no up front cost to lay pipe. The water would go back to be retreated. Sounds so simple I guess it wouldn't work.
  5. gabby

    gabby Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    The state sets mandates as to what is or is not allowed when dealing with water sources. Texas will not allow you to return water pumped out of a well back to the well. I would assume a utility would not allow any customer to add to a water main, no matter the size. Most states place restrictions when dealing with water, ergo the backflow industry was created.

    Their concern is contamination of the domestic supply and/or aquifer.
  6. Palace GeoThermal

    Palace GeoThermal Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    This is the reason it will never fly.
  7. juan

    juan New Member

    You are, of course, quite right about plumbing standards and safety concerns. I'm not suggesting that this is something that do-it-yourselfers should be trying. My thinking is that competent researchers might find a practical way to do this, although it might be a niche application. Sometimes the law follows the technology.

    A good analogy would be distributed power generation, for example solar rooftops. My impression is that electrical utilities resisted grid hookups because of the obvious safety problems involved in numerous sites feeding power back into a network which utility employees had to maintain and repair. However, it appears that engineering standards have been created that addressed this problem, and such hookups are now standard practice.

    Hydraulic engineers are every bit as smart as the guys over at Edison.
  8. geo fan

    geo fan Member Forum Leader

    Ive laid awake thinking of that

    2 problems
    1- as stated a second line would be needed , the only other option is the drain ( which would work of course but )
    This is ideal for urban applications where space doesn't allow geo
    of course in large scale apps the amount of water wasted would be astronomical and dangerous during droughts
    2 pumping fees of the city , They would basically have to put a second pumping station , re-treat the water ,re-test .
    as engineer says no free lunch

    My counter would be a solar assisted geo
    Simply 1000plus gal water tank , heated as much as possible with solar hot water tubes . Dumping water to the drain as needed replacing it with 50plus degree city water . Definitely more expensive and not with out faults , on hot summer drought days it would still be wasteful. But doesn't involve huge unrealistic municipal programs
  9. Looby

    Looby Member Forum Leader

    Yep, I read about this being done <somewhere>, but I can't recall many details.
    IIRC, the setup was just circulating water from the mains through a heat pump
    and directly back to the mains; no "batch processing" required.

    With proper inspection by the municiple water authority, I see no reason why it
    couldn't be done safely. The only fundamental obstacle I can see is the effect on
    the water main's temperature -- if everyone started doin' it.

    Google: geothermal "water main"

  10. geo fan

    geo fan Member Forum Leader

    That's awesome

    It seems the best possible way to do it .
    Especially for municipal buildings and schools
    1 more heat exchanger and 1 more pump and 1 additional water main
    I surprised this isn't more common
  11. TedK

    TedK New Member

    I'm don't know why I'm surprised no one has mentioned what's been going on in Canada. Municipal water concepts have been implemented in some jurisdictions in Canada already, including in the 2010 Olympics site at Whistler and in 1993 in Manitoba. CGC - Canadian GeoExchange Coalition, the national industry association - held a full-day technical workshop on this topic in April 2008 in conjunction with Regional Municipality of Peel (about 1.2 m people in the jurisdiction, just outside of Toronto). Peel is actually in final-feasibility stage to use their wastewater treatment plant (1.2 bn liters per day) effluent as a heat source for a series of office buildings. At the session, short presentations were made by reps from the (Canadian government's) National Research Council, an inventor from the States, Region of Peel's energy manager, and the Canadian Water and Wastewater Association. Based on a full day of Q&A and discussion, participants decided to pursue the concept. In December CGC presented the concepts to CWWA membership at their annual conference in Ottawa and CGC is funding a risk assessment by their safety committee (these are the municipal water officials who liaise with RCMP, and international security / police agencies such as FBI, Shin Bet in Israel, etc). CGC, as part of the new CWWA Energy Committee, are also doing an inventory of systems and will look to establish pilot projects across the country in 2009 - 2010 which researchers could then monitor and generate some science on, so we will have a Standard. The reality is that there's some research and a meaningful initiative going on in this, it's just happening OUTSIDE of the US, in the international arena, where the US -especially the organizations mentioned in this thread to date - is not really present. The website for the Canadian GeoExchange Coalition is Canadian GeoExchange Coalition (CGC) | Coalition Canadienne de l'Énergie Géothermique (CCÉG) Just a quick scan of recent press releases on the home page will show that CGC is leagues ahead in helping the market in many many facets. You can sign up for the email list via [email:2zxipv4l][/email:2zxipv4l] or at the website. *disclaimer: I work for the CGC and am an American citizen
  12. geomark

    geomark New Member

    We have a 750' deep well that I'd like to use as a heat source/sink for a geo system. According to the well drillers report it's a 10" borehole through granite. He hit bedrock at a depth of 8' and it's cased down to 20'. It didn't produce enough water for household use, but has since filled with water to within 90' from the surface. We're building an 1800 sqft. house in the mountains near Charlottesville, VA and are having a hard time finding a geo installer that's familiar with standing column wells. Does anyone know if this sounds feasible?
  13. The depth to water (static water level)in the well is somewhat deep but it should work dependent upon water quality.

  14. Mark Custis

    Mark Custis Not soon. Industry Professional Forum Leader

    I love this BB

    It makes me think.

    If I had that well and I did not need to drink it. I might run a very small in-take pipe to the bottom and pull up the BTUH. Run it through the heat pump BTUH gathering system, and then drop the cooler or warmer water back into the top.

    I live in Ohio so what could I know?
  15. engineer

    engineer Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    Tentatively I'd say it could work since it is a big wide well and the load is likely to be low (based on smallish house).

    Much will depend on water quality and ability to have a right-sized, efficient pump delivering the required water.

    Google "northeastgeo" and "Carl Orio" for more on SCW
  16. waterpirate

    waterpirate Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    Depending on your tonnage requirement, that 10"x750' foot hole would take a sizeable loop.
  17. engineer

    engineer Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader


    Are you thinking of dropping a single closed loop U-tube down that 10" x 750' bore? Maybe an 1-1/4" or 1-1/2"?

    That has merit - pumping power could be much less and no worries with water quality.
  18. ncgeo

    ncgeo Member

    The pumping cost on the open loop should not be that great considering the water is 90' from ground surface. Probably could get by with a 1/2 HP or less pump motor unless there were significant line losses or pressure requirement at the unit.

    Curious, on a closed loop with 750' vertical drop, how much pump head is needed? Probably the depth is irrelevant since both sides of the loop are filled?
  19. engineer

    engineer Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    For closed loop pump power need only overcome the friction losses of all the elements of the fluid path, regardless of orientation, horizontal or vertical
  20. waterpirate

    waterpirate Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    That is exactly what I was thinking. Because the heat transfer for bedrock is so high, If that was a true 10" bore I would "stuff" at least a 2" loop in the hole and grout it shut top to bottom. Some math could be done to determine at what point pipe size cost outweighed friction loss for pumping or heat exchange performance.

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