GEOTHERMAL REFRIGERANT LOOP
The ground source heat pump comprises the Refrigerant Loop of the Geothermal System to provide Heating and Cooling to your home. The geothermal heat pump can be designed to achieve 100% of the heating load requirement, even during the coldest days of the year in Central and Northern BC. The geothermal heat pump is the primary mechanism used in the heat energy exchange process used to transfer heat from the ground into your home.
A fluid is circulated in piping that is placed below the earth’s surface (the Ground Exchanger). As the fluid circulates through the piping, heat is transferred from the ground to the cooler circulating fluid. The warmed fluid flows through a heat exchanger within a ground source heat pump, where the heat is transferred to vaporize the refrigerant.
The vaporized refrigerant is heated further within the heat pump by compressing it. The hot refrigerant then flows through a second heat exchanger, within the ground source heat pump. Here, the heat is exchanged with either air or water, depending on the distribution system within your home. During the heat transfer to the distribution system, the refrigerant cools and condenses back into a liquid for the cycle to start all over again.
Air conditioning of your home works in a similar manner as heating with the following exception. A reversing valve, within the geothermal heat pump, redirects the refrigerant to enable heat to be drawn from your home and transfers it to the earth through the geothermal ground exchanger. The same heat pump can be used for heating and cooling; air conditioning is a benefit from a Geothermal System, even in a heating dominated climate such as Central and Northern BC.
Once the heat has been extracted from the Ground Exchanger and compressed (ie: increase in temperature) in the Refrigerant Loop (ie: geothermal heat pump), it is ready to heat your home. The heat (or cool air in air conditioning mode) can be moved through the house’s Distribution System.