• Analysis of ground-source heat pumps in north-of-England homes

      Ali, Alexis; Mohamed, Mostafa H.A.; Abdel-Aal, Mohamad; Schellart, A.; Tait, Simon J. (2016)
      The performance of Ground Source Heat Pump (GSHP) systems for domestic use is an increasing area of study in the UK. This paper examines the thermal performance of three bespoke shallow horizontal GSHP systems installed in newly built residential houses in the North of England against a control house which was fitted with a standard gas boiler. A total of 350 metres of High Density Polyethylene pipe with an external diameter of 40 mm was used for each house as a heat pump loop. The study investigated (i) the performance of a single loop horizontal Ground Heat Exchanger (GHE) against a double loop GHE and (ii) rainfall effects on heat extraction by comparing a system with an infiltration trench connected to roof drainage against a system without an infiltration trench above the ground loops. Parameters monitored for a full year from October 2013 to September 2014. Using the double GHE has shown an enhanced performance of up to 20% compared with single GHE. The infiltration trench is found to improve performance of the heat pumps; the double loop GHE system with an infiltration trench had a COP 5% higher than that of the double loop GHE system without a trench.
    • Effects of coolant flow rate, groundwater table fluctuations and infiltration of rainwater on the efficiency of heat recovery from near surface soil layers

      Mohamed, Mostafa H.A.; El Kezza, O.; Abdel-Aal, Mohamad; Schellart, A.; Tait, Simon J. (2015-01)
      This paper aims to investigate experimentally the effects of circulating coolant flow rate, groundwater table fluctuations, infiltration of rainwater, on the amount of thermal energy that can be recovered from the near surface soil layers. A comprehensive experimental investigation was carried out on a fully equipped tank filled with sand. A heat collector panel was embedded horizontally at the mid-height of the tank. Measurements of the temperature at various points on the heat collector panel, adjacent soil, inlet and outlet were continuously monitored and recorded. After reaching a steady state, it was observed that increasing water saturation in the adjacent soil leads to a substantial increase on the amount of heat recovered. A model was proposed for the estimation of temperature along the heat collector panel based on steady state conditions. It accounted for thermal resistance between pipes and the variability of water saturation in the adjacent soils. This model showed good agreement with the data. Whilst increasing the flow rate of the circulating fluid within the panel did not cause noticeable improvement on the amount of heat energy that can be harnessed within the laminar flow regime commonly found in ground source heat panels. Infiltration of rainwater would cause a temporary enhancement on the amount of extracted heat. Measurement of the sand thermal conductivity during a cycle of drying and wetting indicates that the thermal conductivity is primarily dependent upon the degree of water saturation and secondary on the flow path.
    • Modelling the viability of heat recovery from combined sewers

      Abdel-Aal, Mohamad; Smits, R.; Mohamed, Mostafa H.A.; De Gussem, K.; Schellart, A.; Tait, Simon J. (2014-07-01)
      Modelling of wastewater temperatures along a sewer pipe using energy balance equations and assuming steady-state conditions was achieved. Modelling error was calculated, by comparing the predicted temperature drop to measured ones in three combined sewers, and was found to have an overall root mean squared error of 0.37 K. Downstream measured wastewater temperature was plotted against modelled values; their line gradients were found to be within the range of 0.9995-1.0012. The ultimate aim of the modelling is to assess the viability of recovering heat from sewer pipes. This is done by evaluating an appropriate location for a heat exchanger within a sewer network that can recover heat without impacting negatively on the downstream wastewater treatment plant (WWTP). Long sewers may prove to be more viable for heat recovery, as heat lost can be reclaimed before wastewater reaching the WWTP.
    • Predicting wastewater temperatures in sewer pipes using abductive network models

      Abdel-Aal, Mohamad; Mohamed, Mostafa H.A.; Smits, R.; Abdel-Aal, R.E.; De Gussem, K.; Schellart, A.; Tait, Simon J. (2015)
      A predictive modelling technique was employed to estimate wastewater temperatures in sewer pipes. The simplicity of abductive predictive models attracts large numbers of users due to their minimal computation time and limited number of measurable input parameters. Data measured from five sewer pipes over a period of 12 months provide 33,900 training entries and 39,000 evaluation entries to support the models' development. Two simple predictive models for urban upstream combined sewers and large downstream collector sewers were developed. They delivered good correlation between measured and predicted wastewater temperatures proven by their R(2) values of up to 0.98 and root mean square error (RMSE) of the temperature change along the sewer pipe ranging from 0.15 degrees C to 0.33 degrees C. Analysis of a number of potential input parameters indicated that upstream wastewater temperature and downstream in-sewer air temperature were the only input parameters that are needed in the developed models to deliver this level of accuracy.