Geothermal sustainable renewable heating,New Zealand, Next Energy Ltd

By: Next Energy  06-Dec-2011
Keywords: Heating, Energy Efficiency, Home Heating

Next Energy Geothermal Solutions are specifically designed to fulfill your unique home or buildings needs. Our range of Geothermal Solutions provide the perfect contribution to sustainable living, increasing energy and heating efficiency. And a well designed heating system, not only offers unbeatable luxury and comfort that improves your health and well being but has the added benefit of adding value to your investment by protecting and caring for buildings.

Our Geothermal home heating solutions are better suited to ‘new builds’ because of the necessity to consider the whole home. As part of the process of recommending a Solution our Technicians provide valuable advice and guidance on overall energy efficiency, such as enhanced insulation, thermal breaks and glazing options which all contribute to the overall performance of your home heating. Geothermal Systems can affect design decisions and need careful consideration, however, unlike Solar Panels; Geothermal is hidden and unobtrusive and won’t impact on the look of your new home.

We recognize that for most of our customers their core reason for moving to a Geothermal Solution is their desire to reduce consumption and so for us the focus of each System design is Energy Efficiency. This focus on performance ensures that you gain the most from your investment. For us Energy Efficiency is king and this further sets us apart from competitors.

Next Energy’s Geothermal heating units can either be “Dual Fluid” or “Water Based”. The main difference between the systems is the material the captor pipes are made from and how it collects and transfers the heat energy. When Next Energy design a system we choose the best and most cost effective solution for your property.

“Dual Fluid” systems, also known as “direct exchange” (DX), use copper captor pipes with refrigerant gas flowing through them. Next Energy’s system uses a plastic coated copper pipe to protect the copper should the soil be acidic.

“Water Based” systems use a High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) captor pipe with a water and antifreeze (propylene glycol) mix running through them. This antifreeze mix collects heat from the ground and transfers it through a heat exchanger into the refrigerant circuit where it is compressed to provide heating.

The “Water Based” system requires an extra pump and heat exchanger to collect the energy from the ground, whereas with the “Dual Fluid” system, the compressor pumps the refrigerant round the system directly. The refrigerant in the “Dual Fluid” system can also accept heat from the ground better than the antifreeze, all helping to increase overall efficiency. The slight down side with the “Dual Fluid” system is that the copper pipe costs more than the HDPE pipe. However once you take into account the captor manifold, extra pump and heat exchanger on the “Water Base” system the cost difference isn’t that great.

The “Water Based” system provides greater flexibility in selecting an appropriate site for the captors as the length of pipe between the captor area and the heat exchanger can be up to 90 metres, compared to 20 metres for the “Dual Fluid” system. “Water Based” systems also have the added option of a reverse cycle that they can be used to cool buildings in the summer, pumping cool water through the floor heating pipes.

The “Dual Fluid” system can either be supplied as an outdoor unit (Geopack, available up to 12kW) which comes ready-filled with refrigerant or an indoor unit, which is not weatherproofed and is normally located in a garage.

“Dual Fluid” Systems allow for use of an underground water source or spring as the energy source and also allow for use of a vertical captor if the property has insufficient land for a horizontal captor field.

There is some crossover regarding available outputs for both types of systems.

Traditionally “Water Based” systems have been popular but recently both the USA and Germany have introduced standards for “Dual Fluid” systems and Next Energy expect their use to increase.

“Water Based” System “Dual Fluid” System
  • HDPE piping
  • Water and anti-freeze mix
  • Requires extra pump and heat exchanger
  • Longer piping between captors and exchanger
  • Reverse cycle option allows for building cooling
  • Copper piping
  • Refrigerant
  • Compressor pumps the refrigerant directly

Keywords: Energy Efficiency, Geothermal Solutions, Heating, Heating Solutions, Home Heating, Home Heating Solutions,

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