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Missenden Department of Engineering Systems, London South Bank University, 103 Borough Road, London, SE1 0AA, UK *Tel.: +44-020 7815 7013; Fax: +44-020 7815 7699; E-mail address: email@example.com
Abstract The environmental impact of the UK building stock has increased the pressure on architects, engineers and building operators to reduce the use of air conditioning in favour of more passive cooling solutions. Good progress has been made in this direction but many passive solutions are limited to new-build projects. For existing buildings, and those for which mechanical air conditioning cannot be avoided, low energy cooling capability can be incorporated to improve significantly overall efficiency. This paper focuses on one such example – cooling using groundwater, which has gained popularity in recent years in the London area. Among the reasons for this are the excellent energy efficiency and the increasing viability of water abstraction systems. The paper shows that groundwater cooling technology can be incorporated into new and existing buildings to help reduce their environmental impact.
Introduction The ongoing drive to reduce buildings’ environmental impact has increased the pressure on architects, engineers and building operators to reduce the use of mechanical refrigeration in favour of more passive cooling solutions. Good progress has been made in this direction but many passive solutions are limited to new construction, representing 2-3 %/yr of the UK building stock . For existing buildings, and those for which mechanical air conditioning cannot be avoided, low energy cooling capability can be incorporated to improve significantly overall efficiency. Low energy cooling technologies have been applied in the UK. These include night cooling by natural ventilation and/or mechanical ventilation, slab (high 1
A second borehole is not a requirement for many installations in areas where the water table is rising (e. chilled ceilings and beams. displacement ventilation.thermal mass) air cooling. The paper presents an overview of the geographical area of the chalk aquifer beneath London as well as the groundwater levels and quality in the London basin. It provides details on the systems used so far and compares the environmental and energy performance of groundwater cooling with vapour compression cooling. Using groundwater for cooling. in the London area). The resultant heated water is then recharged into the aquifer at a different location (the 'hot' well). and sea/river/lake cooling. depending on the aquifer and location) and is used via a heat exchanger for cooling the building. desiccant cooling. Cold water is abstracted from one part of the aquifer system (the 'cold' well) (6oC – 12oC. This paper examines one such low energy capability – cooling using groundwater. slab water cooling. and extracted groundwater can often be re-used as grey water (it can be potable) or discharged to the sewer . evaporative cooling. Heat exchanger Cold well Warm well Figure 1. Figure 1 shows this principle. Basic groundwater cooling system A groundwater cooling system requires the presence of an aquifer from which water can be extracted via a borehole. It then compares groundwater cooling systems that have been installed in London. ground coupling air cooling and heating. 2 . aquifer (groundwater) cooling.g.
3 . Its northern edge lies along the southern catchment boundary of the Upper River Colne and the northern catchment boundary of the River Roding. which runs along the eastern catchment boundaries of the Rivers Roding and Ingrebourne. Most of the area is covered by urban development. with the sections in between cutting across the Rivers Thames. principally London and its suburbs. Figure 2.Geographical area of the chalk aquifer beneath London The area covers the majority of the London Basin. while the western border runs along the catchment boundaries of the River Wey and The Cut near Maidenhead. see Figure 2 . Staines and Epping. The River Thames flows west to east across the middle of the area. The south of the area is mainly defined by the outcrop pattern of the Chalk of the North Downs. Geographical area of the London Basin . The eastern edge is defined by the Thames Region boundary of the Environment Agency. with other urban centres being Slough. Colne and Lee sub-parallel to the Chalk outcrop pattern.
creating a large depression in the water table . 4 . The rising groundwater beneath London can be regarded as an available resource that could be utilized for potable and non-potable purposes.Groundwater levels in the London basin chalk aquifer Rising groundwater levels result from a significant reduction in groundwater abstraction from the Chalk aquifer beneath London since the mid-1960s. in 2004 • • • Annual licensed quantity = 123705 Ml/a Actual quantity abstracted for cooling or other process = 38180 Ml/a The difference between the licensed and the actual abstraction of groundwater can provide an extra cooling potential of over 1796 TJ for a design temperature difference of 5K. The figure shows the huge cooling potential that exists from using groundwater. It is this re-saturation. This prevents the water table actually bursting through at ground level but causes artesian pressure to build up underneath the London Clay as levels rise. A database for borehole sites in the London basin is available from the Environment Agency. slowly increasing its saturation. The Chalk aquifer is confined over most of London by a layer of impermeable London Clay and other strata. up to 80 metres thick in places . Figure 3 shows the licensed and the actual abstraction of groundwater from 1990 to 2004 in the London basin . Prior to this the Chalk aquifer had been increasingly exploited through the development of groundwater sources during the 19th and first half of the 20th centuries. The subsequent reduction in abstraction has resulted in groundwater levels recovering by as much as 3 metres per year in places in the early 1990s . This has led to a gradual re-filling of the water table cone of depression. which could affect the stability of certain foundations and cause ingress of water into tunnels in the London Clay. groundwater levels below central London had dropped to 88 metres below sea level. For example. By the time abstraction peaked in the 1960s. The responsibility for the strategic management of groundwater resources falls within the remit of the Environment Agency and any groundwater cooling scheme needs to comply with their abstraction rules.
the water should be sampled for the presence of bacteria. Although the presence of bacteria in a water-cooling scheme will have minimal risk. Appendix 5 of  provides a compilation of existing standards and recommendations for water quality for different application. the authors have sampled groundwater at a couple of sites in London for the presence of bacteria and found that the nearest comparable application is bathing water. e. Particulates such as silt may be filtered using appropriate gravel or carbon filters. albeit in an anaerobic environment. chloride and sulphate in the water .140000 Licensed Abstraction Actual Abstraction 120000 100000 Abstraction (Ml/a) 80000 100075 101216 111970 111565 38941 81646 81415 123705 2004 38180 81516 81060 89162 99033 98727 97440 98726 98639 24391 60000 40000 30612 21199 20000 19949 19172 18679 18221 16896 19139 22638 21396 20742 0 1990 1992 1994 1996 1998 2000 2002 Year Figure 3. as a precaution.g. sodium. the sea. because rocks etc. Licensed and actual abstraction from chalk aquifer beneath London. not affecting heat transfer characteristics or reliability in closed systems. act as filters. to avoid fouling of heat exchanger surfaces. Surface water may also contain bacteria. London has relatively high concentrations of magnesium. it does not include standards and recommendations for water quality for operating a groundwater cooling system. Unfortunately. However. groundwater in its natural state is generally of excellent quality. and Table 1 shows the recommended water quality standards. Water quality In terms of quality. 5 26440 .
the actual power absorbed is typically 60 – 70% of this.Table 1. pH 6 – 9 The Bathing Water (Classification) Regulations 1991 (Appendix 19 of . based upon EC Bathing water directive 76/160/EEC) Guidelines and standards Comparison of groundwater cooling systems in London Table 2 presents a comparison of groundwater cooling systems that have been installed in the following sites in London. no oil films. The powers are relatively high as all the boreholes are deep. Buckingham Palace The Sadler’s Wells Theatre The Zetter Hotel in Clerkenwell The Royal Festival Hall 6 . Microbiological requirements <10000 counts per 100ml for Total coliforms and <2000 counts per 100ml for faecal coliforms Chemical and physical requirements No abnormal colour change. leading to lower COSP’s. It should be noted that the pump powers are the continuous maximum ratings of the driving motors. • • • • • • Portcullis House – Houses of Parliament The City Hall The Queen’s Gallery. Recommended water quality standards for bathing water .
165000 litres each 765 kW 2 30 m 300 mm 150 m 2×56 kW Basket strainer 22 litres/s 13. sand River Thames.4 oC Plate M15-BFM8 Alfa Laval Lake fill in gardens Sadler's Well Theatre Rosebery Avenue. Westminster London SW1A 2LW 2001 Two.5 oC Plate 150x3 Chem Firm Serving toilet cisterns and pre-wash plates Sewer City Hall The Queen's Walk. London SE1 8XX 2006 None 1200 kW 2 100 m 300 mm 140 m 2×64 kW Basket strainer 25 litres/s 14 oC Plate Toilets. rating Filtration Water extraction rate Water extract temperature Heat exchanger type Model Manufacturer Extra use of water Discharge of water used Water discharge temperature Any failures and problems 19-21 oC 1 pump not working. Belvedere Road. The assumptions made and the results are shown in Table 3. energy consumed and CO2 emissions. The COSP. London EC1R 4TN 1998 None 500 kW 1 N/A 200 mm 200 m 30 kW Basket strainer 12 litres/s 11-12 oC Plate WC's. the co-efficient of system performance is the useful cooling divided by the power needed to supply this. including ancillaries. The range of COSP for groundwater depends on pumping power. London SE1 2AA 2001 None 1000 kW 2 50 m 200 mm 100 m 2×60 kW Basket strainer 30 litres/s 12-14 oC Plate Toilets. sewer if used in Greywater 20-22 oC None Sewer Sewer 22-23 oC None 22 oC None as yet 22 oC None as yet Comparison between ground water and vapour compression cooling In order to be viable the groundwater cooling system must compare favourably with a conventional vapour compression system in terms of running cost. showers. cleaning the landscape River Thames 20 oC N/A Year system completed Buffer tank Cooling capacity Number of boreholes Distance between boreholes Borehole diameter Depth of borehole Pump set max. trees Queen's Gallery Buckingham Palace. Comparison of groundwater cooling systems in London. Portcullis House Location Bridge street. bottled water for sale Royal Festival Hall South Bank.4 litres/s 13-14 oC Plate Alfa Laval WC's. Buckingham Palace Road London SW1A 1AA 2002 None 700 kW 1 N/A 438 mm 150 m 56 kW 400 micron cartridge filter × 2 22 litres/s 13. hand basins.Table 2. bottled water for sale Sewer Zetter Hotel 86-88 Clerkenwell Road. for deep boreholes with no 7 . London EC1M 5RJ 2004 None 47 kW 1 N/A 200 mm 130 m 5 kW Basket strainer 1.
are pertinent.6 = 10.05 = 0. The results indicate that the cost per kWh of groundwater cooling is around 2. Other annual costs such as maintenance etc. Each case requires individual assessment. Capital cost comparison depends on whether an existing source is being adapted or whether a new borehole (costing perhaps £144300 ) must be driven or a new chiller be purchased (budget price £41000 per 500kW ).71×0. The energy consumption and CO2 emissions per kWh of groundwater cooling are around 3. this is high (low COSP). Groundwater cooling system Cooling energy output (kWh) ∆t for groundwater (K) Cp for water (kJ/kg K) Mass of groundwater needed (kg) Volume of groundwater needed (m3) Cost of groundwater @1.64 – 0. This highlights the advantage of secondary use of clean deep borehole water which offsets the cost of the static lift.72 – 0.036 0.19 9.84 35. thus the running cost comparison is essentially between borehole and vapour compression water-chiller. or with static recovery.79  100/2.79 15. Comparison between groundwater and vapour compression cooling.31 8 .4 – 140.79 1. for shallow water sources.135 = 0.43 kg CO2/kWh (kg CO2) 3 Vapour compression refrigeration 100 N/a N/a N/a N/a N/a 2.5 – 8 times less than that of the vapour compression system.23 4.64×0. this is low (high COSP). Table 3.84×0.2 17143 17. much of the two competing systems are common (air cooling. With time.1×1.).static recovery.05/ kWh (£) Total cost (£) CO2 emissions assuming 0.1 17.05 = 1.79 = 35.4 – 100/140.41 100 5 4.532 – 0.58 – 0.05 – 0.71 10.6  100/9. these costs will become available in the public domain.3 – 50 times less than that of the vapour compression system. chilled water circulation etc.135 p/m (£) Nett COSP of cooling system Energy consumption (kWh) Energy cost @ £0.
Free cooling systems. G. in particular.  The Environment Agency. BSRIA Guide BG 8/2004. Also. ISBN: 0860175397. Stanfield. Acknowledgements The authors would like to express their gratitude for the financial support of the Carbon Trust in this study.  Leggett. which. Berks RG1 8DQ.. L. Kings Meadow Road. bsj – building services journal: the magazine of CIBSE.. YORK International Ltd.. Brewer. 2001..M.Conclusions The paper demonstrates that the use of groundwater to provide cooling is a technique that has gained popularity in recent years in the London area. Groundwater levels in the chalk-basal sands aquifer of the Central London basin. SS14 3HE.  Private Communication. Basildon. June 2005. Kings Meadow House. D. Gardiners Lane South.. thus helping to reduce the environmental impact of the UK building stock. E.  Environment Agency.  Green. in addition to having significant maintenance implications. Ground water cooling. Rainwater and greywater use in buildings: best practice guidance. 9 . the paper shows that groundwater cooling technology can be incorporated into newly-build and existing buildings to improve significantly overall efficiency.. R. CIRIA publication C539. Thanks are also due to the system users at the various sites for providing design data and information for the comparison in Table 2. Dr Hywel Davies at CIBSE and London Underground Ltd is also gratefully acknowledged. ISBN: 0860226425.J.  The Environment Agency. D. References  De Saulles. Essex. London 2001. T. Brown.. The input of our project partners. Reading. may also occupy valuable space. Holliday. Another key factor is the avoidance of cooling towers. This can be attributed to a number of reasons including excellent energy efficiency and the increasing viability of water extraction systems. May 2005. State of the environment report for London.
ASHRAE Transactions. Part 1B. K.com/ApprovedBriefingNotes/BriefingNoteTemplate.D. Rafferty. Available at: http://www..aspx?intBriefi ngNoteID=197 10 .mtprog. Vol. BNCR17: Energy efficiency performance indicators for packaged liquid chillers. 1998. 104.  Market Transformation Programme. Well-pumping issues in commercial groundwater heat pump systems.
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