Saturday, March 13, 2010

System is working! Concept of 'Quality'?

Sat, Mar 13: This system must be working! Quite how much remains to be seen... but there's enough to show that it works! (in only in a diurnial way... it will take another summer and winter to discover interseasonal storage). The daily electricity consumption is noticeably less than usual.
   Yesterday (Friday) morning was a cold cloudy day, the solar panel timeclock didnt come on till 0-930, and the heatpump was on before it, at 0900 - the ground temperature was 10.2ÂșC which is what it recovers to over night normally at this time of year. So this is a good yardstick.
   Saturday morning started sunny, the timeclock had been set to 0900, but I didn't turn on the heatpump till 1000. So after an hour of morning working (on a day with cold air temperature of about 6) the glycol coming up from the ground in the first morning test was 12.2. A check of the meter in the loft at 1100 showed that 4 kWhrs had been buried since 0900.
  The heatpump worked for a while and got the water temperature up faster than I have seen it work before. So if the quality of the warmth it is getting has improved its performance, then we have achieved something.
  What do I mean by 'quality'? Surely heat can only be measured in quantity? Well I would say that if heat can be pulled out, but is a narrow ring of warmth and is rapidly used up within hours or minutes, that is poor 'quality'. If heat is pulled out (at the same starting temperature) but continues to deliver for many days or hours, that is good. The idea of interseasonal heating here is to put so much down that it will deliver quality warmth for many weeks.

  One thing I must complete is insulation. I can't help feeling that some of my earlier results are helped by the pipes picking up heat from the house as they go. I am gradually getting the whole way round the system, and when pipe insulation is on, the joints etc will have to be wound with bandage or foam.

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