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A study of the feasibility of surface water heat pump systems in office buildings near the Thames

Gomatou, P; (2005) A study of the feasibility of surface water heat pump systems in office buildings near the Thames. Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

Energy consumption for air-conditioning in the commercial sector is rapidly growing in all developed countries at present. This is due mostly to the large floor space used by office buildings, the increased frequency of warmer summers, as a result of climate change and the continuous demand for high levels of thermal comfort by occupants. One way of reducing this energy consumption and the associated carbon emissions is to use heat pumps for cooling and heating, connected to a source of surface water, which can be used as a heat source or sink depending on the building's demands. Given the large number of new office developments adjacent to both banks of the Thames in London, this study investigates the feasibility of using the water of the River Thames as a heat source or/and sink for a water loop heat pump (WLHP) system. The aim of this project was to investigate the possibility, the restrictions and the potential benefits of implementing such a system. The first step was to collect data concerning the quality of the river's water as well as data on the thermal behaviour of the river and how it responded to London's climatic conditions. The study then used computer simulation to examine the energy performance of four different heating and cooling systems of a typical office building a VAV central air-conditioning system, a WLHP system, an open-loop surface water heat pump (SWHP) system and a closed-loop SWHP system. Results of the study showed that the most feasible system in the case of the Thames is a closed- loop SWHP system due to the quality of the river's water as well as environmental restrictions that emerged from the Water Resources Regulations. The system achieves an overall reduction of approximately 50% in energy consumption and C02 emissions compared to a VAV central system and a reduction of more than 10% compared to a conventional WLHP system. These figures reveal that the use of such a system in office buildings near the Thames is indeed an energy efficient solution which is worth considering.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: A study of the feasibility of surface water heat pump systems in office buildings near the Thames
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > The Bartlett School of Architecture
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1566937
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