GEO Exchange Corp

GEO Exchange Corp

- Heat Transfer and Piping Design Geothermal Software

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geo hourly definitive geothermal design software for residential and commercial ground source heat pump systems. geo hourly is a method using detailed hourly analysis integrated to save design time and improves accuracy in your ground loop design and energy cost analysis for vertical, horizontal, hybrid, and solar designs..

The next generation of 8760 hourly commercial design software not only sizes the geothermal heat pump equipment in each zone and the ground loop heat exchanger, but also sizes the hybrid system and the hybrid operating hours. The geothermal operating cost is integrated into the design, so the first cost can be evaluated and the financial payback reduced.

Each building zone has a unique hourly analysis integrated with the zone heat pump selection, operation, and energy cost. An easy analytics optimization of the ground loop design. You can now set design contingency based on realistic operating conditions. This can reduce your first cost.

The 60 year old heat transfer theory has been applied as described in Industry guidelines and substantially expanded to include a separate 8760 hourly analysis for each zone.

8760 Hourly Analysis
Design method - unique zone hourly analysis:

GEO®Hourly.com has a built-in 8760 hourly generator that is fast and efficient enabling each zone to have a unique 8760 hourly analysis for the heat pump equipment in each zone environment. A third-party 8760 profile program is no longer required.
Selects the proper size zone heat pumps:

The heat pump selected from the library is corrected and properly sized to match the real zone environment. Each zone is processed separately using the heat pump selected for each individual zone based on the heat pump capacity type responding to the performance capability of the zone heat pump. Now you're not forced to only use a single heat pump for the entire building. Running in a fixed capacity condition. Triple hourly analysis - lower the first cost:

A new way to evaluate geothermal designs is easy to adopt, and can lower the first cost of geothermal projects. Each zone performs a triple-8760 hourly analysis based on three separate design parameters. Using the energy cost from this analysis a comparison is presented showing the payout for different lengths in ground loops designs.
Intelligent Analysis transforms your insight for contingency and economic payback evaluation.

Hybrid Design Integrated:

Hybrid operation is not an add-on optimization program, but is integrated into the original design method where 8760 hourly analysis and individual heat pump equipment are performed for each individual zone. Every geothermal heat pump design can elect to allow part of the ground heat exchanger to be offset by a fluid cooler, cooling tower, or boiler. Select the portion that you want directed to the hybrid and the ground borefield is designed along with the hybrid parameters.

Energy Model - Zones:

The Energy-Cost integrated in the application uses your Building Operation selections to apply the operating relationship of the heat pump type characteristics to the building thermal loads for the heat rejected to the ground or heat extracted from the ground. Heat Pump equipment models can be selected from many manufactures-brands for each of the 40 zones. GEO®Hourly corrects the rated performance data to match the indoor building conditions specified in each zone. Each building zone is then analyzed separately for the cooling and heating loads on the coil, and GEO®Hourly determines how many heat pumps will meet the zone conditions, and calculates the operating cost of each zone.

Detailed heat pump operation:

GEO®Hourly was created as a genuine simple design tool that is easy to use, extremely fast, and reliable using 8760 hourly design conditions with Climate Sites from over 470 locations in the US and Canada. The 8760 hourly integration applies your detailed heat pump operation to the building usage for the Climate Site location you select.

Easy analysis optimization:

Optimizing the length of the in-ground heat exchanger is critical to the economics and performance of a Geothermal Heat Pump system. Reducing the length of the in-ground heat exchanger reduces the installed cost and yields a faster payback. GEO®Hourly provides optimization methods and comparisons that allows you to lower the cost of the in-ground heat exchanger, and match the heat pump equipment size to the building zone.

Auxiliary Electric Heat:

Auxiliary Electric Heat is only needed about 30 hours a year and often times can be much more economical than increasing the model size of the Geothermal Heat Pump and increasing the length of the ground loop.

Benchmark vs. Design:

Design comparisons present analytics that show you insights into the real cost that may not be obvious.

Hybrid Design:

The in-ground heat exchanger for heating and cooling designs are almost never the same length, so a Hybrid system using a cooling tower to replace some of the in-ground heat exchanger may be a good alternate design for some projects.

Climate Data Library:

Climate Sites from over 470 locations in the US and Canada have their own built-in library of 8760 hourly climatic data.

Design conditions are from ASHRAE. ©2013 ASHRAE, www.ashrae.org. Used with permission.

Building Types Library:

The building usage has a significant impact on the length of the in-ground heat exchanger and the operating cost to heat and cool a building. GEO®hourly has a complete library of about 45 building uses and an internal heat gain estimator for each building. The general category of building types are list below.

  • Retail
  • Office
  • Schools
  • Healthcare
  • Residential
  • Industrial or Commercial Mixed

  • Unique Zone Hourly Analysis
  • Realistic Heat Pump Operation
  • Proper Size Zone Heat Pumps
  • Energy Model - Zones
  • Intelligent Triple Hourly Zone Analysis
  • Lower the First Cost
  • Easy Analysis Optimization
  • Hybrid Design Integration
  • Patents No. 9,443,043 and No.9,852,243

Zone Energy Cost

Geothermal definitive design software energy model analyses the Operating Cost to help you evaluate the most practical ground loop design. GEO®Hourly has the Energy-Model integrated into the application, so when you select the Climate Site, Building Type, and Operating Schedule, parameters are established that defines your building profile and btu transfer into and out of the earth. Heat Pump equipment models can be selected from many manufactures-brands for each of the 40 zones. GEO®Hourly corrects the rated performance data to match the indoor building conditions specified in each zone. Each building zone is then analyzed separately for the cooling and heating loads on the coil, and GEO®Hourly determines how many heat pumps will meet the zone conditions, and calculates the operating cost of each zone.

8760 Hourly Design

GEO®Hourly was created as a genuine simple design tool that is easy to use, extremely fast, and reliable using unique zone 8760 hourly design analysis. The climate conditions from over 470 locations in the US and Canada creates the building environment profile from the 8760 hourly built-in library. The 8760 hourly building profile is then analyzed by the integration of a hour-by-hour heat pump operaion for the simulation process that applies your building usage for the Climate Site location you select.

Climate Sites Library

Climate Sites from over 470 locations in the US and Canada have their own built-in library of 8760 hourly climatic data. This extensive database of climate data is from typical weather data for all 8760 hours of the year that are long-term climatic data conditions.

Design conditions fo energy model are from ASHRAE. ©2013 ASHRAE, www.ashrae.org. Used with permissio

Heat Pumps Transfer Btu's

The heat pumps function is to transfer the Building Btu Loads between the ground heat exchange. GEO®Hourly is the only geothermal design method that runs a detailed hourly analysis of the heat pump operation transferring the building Btu loads to and from the ground.The heat pump equipment for cooling and heating is corrected to reflect realistic performance values, rather than the testing and rating performance conditions used by ANSI/AHRI ISO rating standards. GEO®Hourly helps the designer select the proper size heat pump because Heat Pump performance can have a substantial impact on the in-ground heat exchanger length and operating cost.

Heat Pump models can be selected from many manufactures-brands for each of the 40 zones. Each zone is analyzed separately for performance and operating cost after the performance data is corrected to match the building.

The heat pump equipment selection process for each building zone is quick and automatically sized based on the building design parameters

Variable Capacity
Variable Stage Heat Pump Equipment offered by manufactures represent the trophy design and use an inverter to run a dc variable capacity compressor. Variable capacity compressors run longer, remove more moisture, and have the lowest operating cost. This trophy design is for the client that wants the best even if not the most economical.

Dual Capacity
Dual capacity Heat Pump Equipment offered by manufactures represent a high efficiency design and use constant speed scroll compressors that allow the low stage to operate up to 67% of capacity. During Low capacity the compressor uses less power and runs longer removing more moisture. The Dual capacity is popular with residential customers.

Single Capacity
Single Capacity Heat Pump Equipment offered by manufactures represent almost the same efficiency as a Dual capacity design and typically use a scroll compressor. Single capacity compressors have higher capacity than Dual capacity of the same size, but cycle on and off more frequently than the Dual capacity design. The Single capacity is usually more compact and more cost effective especially on commercial projects.

Definitive Loop Design for GSHP

Geothermal Definitive ground loop design geothermal heat pumps (Ground Source Heat Pumps) utilizes water to cool and heat the refrigerant instead of air. Water (fluid) is circulated in a closed loop heat exchanger located in the earth where the earth's temperature at 28 feet below the surface is constant all year and doesn't fluctuate to extremes like the air temperatures above the surface. Ground Loop heat exchangers consist of a borehole about 5 inches in diameter vertically drilled in the earth. U-tube pipe about 1 inch in diameter is inserted in the borehole and sealed with a bentonite-sand-graphite slurry grout. GEO®Hourly simulates the design length of the closed loop heat exchanger for the heating system and a separate design length for the cooling systems.

Vertical Bore Closed Loop

  • Vertical bore closed loop in-ground heat exchangers can be designed with good accuracy because the earths temperature below 28 feet is constant all year. Vertical systems are the most universally applicable ground source system configuration for commercial applications. Vertical systems need less pipe and require less land area than do Horizontal systems, and do not require water-bearing formations.

Horizontal Closed Loop

Horizontal - Directional Borehole

  • Horizontal bore closed loop heat exchangers are directionally drilled at an angle to a depth then levels off into a horizontal plain. The angle portion of this horizontal bore will be closer to the earth's surface requiring extra pipe to offset the seasonal extremes in soil temperature and soil drying near the surface. Horizontal bore systems are not normally as energy efficient as Vertical bore systems because of the extra pipe required and have limited use on large buildings because of the land area requirement.

Horizontal - Trench

  • Horizontal trench closed loop heat exchangers can have a single straight pipe or multiple pipes installed in a trench. Multiple pipes in a trench can reduce the trench length when in a compact area. The coiled (slinky) arrangement is a substituted for the multiple pipe installation laying in a trench and being closer to the earth's surface require extra pipe to offset the seasonal extremes in soil temperature and soil drying near the surface. Horizontal trench systems are not normally as energy efficient as Vertical bore systems because of the extra pipe required and have limited use on large buildings because of the land area requirement.

Soil Thermal Conductivity

  • Soil Thermal Conducitivity is a heat property and a measurment of soils or rocks ability to conduct heat. Soil Conductivity is a key element in the design length of an in-ground heat exchanger. The conduction rate to the rate of thermal storage in the ground is used to calculate the grounds thermal resistance. By analyzing the heat flow resistance of the ground surrounding the borehole and the resistance of the borehole a heat transfer equation can represent the variable heat rate in an in-ground heat exchanger.

Borehole Resistance

  • Borehole Thermal Resistance is a heat property and a measurment of the combined heat flow resistance of the U-bend heat exchanger pipe, the U-bend heat exchanger pipe configuration, and the grout in the borehole. Borehole Thermal Resistance is a key element in the design length of an in-ground heat exchanger. Research has shown that by combining several elements into a single variable heat rate a heat transfer equation can determine the length of an in-ground heat exchanger.
  •  Borehole Resistance is based on rigorous detailed designs following reports by IGSHPA in 2012, and US DOE research reported in 2013.

U-Bend Pipe and Configuration Layout

  • In a borehole, water circulates in pipes forming a closed loop between the heat pump and the in-ground heat exchanger. The U-bend heat exchanger pipe size and the U-bend heat exchanger pipe configuration layout in the borehole are corresponding elements of thermal resistance in the borehole.
  • In a single U-bend heat exchanger pipe circulating fluid flows down one leg of the U-bend and flows up the other. Double U-bend heat exchanger pipes divide the flow between the two U-bend in parallel flow. Recent research sponsored by the DOE shows that double U-bend heat exchanger pipes have lower Borehole Resistance resulting in a significant length reduction in the in-ground heat exchanger compared to a single U-bend pipe.
  • The proximity of the U-bend heat exchanger pipe layout in the borehole between the pipe and the borehole wall contribute to thermal resistance in the borehole. Single or double U-bend heat exchanger pipe with a spacer that holds the pipe near the borehole wall results in the lowest thermal resistance.

Grout Conductivity

  • Grout Conducitivity is a heat property and a measurment of grouts ability to conduct heat. The environmentally safe method to seal a borehole is to install a bentonite slurry. Bentonite swells and forms a good seal of the borehole but the conductivity of the bentonite slurry alone will insulate the borehole yielding a very poor conductivity. Silica sand or graphite can be added to the bentonite slurry to raise the conductivity to an acceptable value making an Enhanced grout.
  • Enhanced grout is always recommented because it provides better heat transfer in the borehole compared to just plain bentonite. Grout, U-bend pipe, and U-bend pipe configuration are corresponding elements of borehole resistance and are combined into a single variable heat rate in a heat transfer equation used to determine the length of an in-ground heat exchanger. 

Definitive Design Optimization
Geothermal definitive design software investment optimization of the length of the in-ground heat exchanger is critical to the economics and performance of a Geothermal Heat Pump system. The typical heating and cooling system utilizing air has a lower installed cost because air is free. A Geothermal Heat Pump System (Ground Source Heat Pumps) utilizes water circulating in a closed loop heat exchanger located in the earth. Reducing the length of the in-ground heat exchanger reduces the installed cost and yields a faster payback. GEO®Hourly provides optimization methods and comparisons that allows you to lower the cost of the in-ground heat exchanger, and match the heat pump equipment size to the building zone.

Auxiliary Electric Heat Strips
Auxiliary electric heat strips located inside the unit of a Geothermal Heat Pumps (Ground Source Heat Pumps) provide extra heat when the Heat Pump equipment reaches maximum capacity. Rather than up-size the Geothermal Heat Pump unit for only a few hours a year it is more economical to use resistance Auxiliary electric heat strips for about 30 hours per year. Some manufactures refer to Auxiliary heat as a third stage. When Auxiliary heat is used GEO®Hourly simulates Auxiliary electric heat in every zone and calculates the operating cost.

Intelligent Business Triple Hourly Zone Analysis
All simulations create multi-designs for analytic and comparisons. GEO®Hourly calculates the operating cost for each multi-design and the economic payback. Installing excess length in the in-ground heat exchanger will add a design contingency with financial consequences. GEO®Hourly presents the excess length and the simple payback period in years. Almost always the payback for excess length is not obvious. Simple clicks on key parameters will effect an efficient and optimum design with speed and accuracy.

Hybrid Design
Hybrid Designs are very useful when the design length of the cooling Btu load and design length of the heating Btu load have significant differences. Substituting a Hybrid design for the difference in length will balance the Btu load for the in-ground Heat exchanger and transfer some of the Btu load to the Hybrid. If the excess length in the in-ground heat exchanger is only needed a few hours of the year the additional operating cost for the Hybrid may be less than amortizing the installed cost of the excess length for the in-ground heat exchanger. GEO®Hourly will size the Btu load of the Hybrid equipment along with appropriate parameter. Shifting the run time of the Hybrid equipment to night or a different season can enhance the economics while taking advantage of lower utility rates or lower wet bulb temperatures.

Simplify your design effort

  • Geothermal design solutions software is a definitive method that saves you time because the integrated design data reduces the complexity and design effort, resulting in a reliable design size of the borehole field.

Realistic Intelligent heat pump operations - reliable ground loop design

  • Allows precise control over heat pump selection in multiple zones.
  • Reduces the workflow coupling between load calculation software, and the selection of the correct sized heat pump equipment in each zone.

Energy cost by zone - easy analysis optimization

  • Built-in energy-model procedure with 15,000 annual heat pump calculations in one second while supporting Industry Standard Heat Transfer Theory.
  • Other design solutions are only starting points and should not be used as a substitute for a thorough analysis of the site loads, only providing about 28 annual heat pump calculations.

Benchmark comparisons

  • The only design solution with triple benchmark operating cost comparisons on every simulation. This analysis will be a game changer for the geothermal industry because you gain insight and can evaulate the economic payback.
  • Hybrid Integrated Operation
  • Every geothermal heat pump design can elect to allow part of the ground heat exchanger to be offset by a fluid cooler, cooling tower, or boiler. Select the portion that you want directed to the hybrid and the ground borefield is designed along with the hybrid parameters.

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