US20190162451A1 - Thermal And Moisture Enhanced Gradient Strata For Heat Exchangers - Google Patents

Thermal And Moisture Enhanced Gradient Strata For Heat Exchangers Download PDF

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US20190162451A1
US20190162451A1 US16/207,075 US201816207075A US2019162451A1 US 20190162451 A1 US20190162451 A1 US 20190162451A1 US 201816207075 A US201816207075 A US 201816207075A US 2019162451 A1 US2019162451 A1 US 2019162451A1
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heat exchanger
method according
stratum
ground
heat
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Albert Reid Wallace
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Albert Reid Wallace
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    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F24HEATING; RANGES; VENTILATING
    • F24TGEOTHERMAL COLLECTORS; GEOTHERMAL SYSTEMS
    • F24T10/00Geothermal collectors
    • F24T10/10Geothermal collectors with circulation of working fluids through underground channels, the working fluids not coming into direct contact with the ground
    • F24T10/13Geothermal collectors with circulation of working fluids through underground channels, the working fluids not coming into direct contact with the ground using tube assemblies suitable for insertion into boreholes in the ground, e.g. geothermal probes
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F24HEATING; RANGES; VENTILATING
    • F24FAIR-CONDITIONING; AIR-HUMIDIFICATION; VENTILATION; USE OF AIR CURRENTS FOR SCREENING
    • F24F11/00Control or safety arrangements
    • F24F11/62Control or safety arrangements characterised by the type of control or by internal processing, e.g. using fuzzy logic, adaptive control or estimation of values
    • F24F11/63Electronic processing
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F24HEATING; RANGES; VENTILATING
    • F24TGEOTHERMAL COLLECTORS; GEOTHERMAL SYSTEMS
    • F24T10/00Geothermal collectors
    • F24T10/30Geothermal collectors using underground reservoirs for accumulating working fluids or intermediate fluids
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25BREFRIGERATION MACHINES, PLANTS OR SYSTEMS; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT-PUMP SYSTEMS
    • F25B30/00Heat pumps
    • F25B30/06Heat pumps characterised by the source of low potential heat
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F28HEAT EXCHANGE IN GENERAL
    • F28FDETAILS OF HEAT-EXCHANGE AND HEAT-TRANSFER APPARATUS, OF GENERAL APPLICATION
    • F28F13/00Arrangements for modifying heat-transfer, e.g. increasing, decreasing
    • F28F13/003Arrangements for modifying heat-transfer, e.g. increasing, decreasing by using permeable mass, perforated or porous materials
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F28HEAT EXCHANGE IN GENERAL
    • F28FDETAILS OF HEAT-EXCHANGE AND HEAT-TRANSFER APPARATUS, OF GENERAL APPLICATION
    • F28F21/00Constructions of heat-exchange apparatus characterised by the selection of particular materials
    • F28F21/003Constructions of heat-exchange apparatus characterised by the selection of particular materials for domestic or space-heating systems
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F24HEATING; RANGES; VENTILATING
    • F24DDOMESTIC- OR SPACE-HEATING SYSTEMS, e.g. CENTRAL HEATING SYSTEMS; DOMESTIC HOT-WATER SUPPLY SYSTEMS; ELEMENTS OR COMPONENTS THEREFOR
    • F24D3/00Hot-water central heating systems
    • F24D3/005Hot-water central heating systems combined with solar energy
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F24HEATING; RANGES; VENTILATING
    • F24FAIR-CONDITIONING; AIR-HUMIDIFICATION; VENTILATION; USE OF AIR CURRENTS FOR SCREENING
    • F24F5/00Air-conditioning systems or apparatus not covered by F24F1/00 or F24F3/00, e.g. using solar heat or combined with household units such as an oven or water heater
    • F24F5/0046Air-conditioning systems or apparatus not covered by F24F1/00 or F24F3/00, e.g. using solar heat or combined with household units such as an oven or water heater using natural energy, e.g. solar energy, energy from the ground
    • F24F2005/0057Air-conditioning systems or apparatus not covered by F24F1/00 or F24F3/00, e.g. using solar heat or combined with household units such as an oven or water heater using natural energy, e.g. solar energy, energy from the ground receiving heat-exchange fluid from a closed circuit in the ground
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F24HEATING; RANGES; VENTILATING
    • F24TGEOTHERMAL COLLECTORS; GEOTHERMAL SYSTEMS
    • F24T10/00Geothermal collectors
    • F24T2010/50Component parts, details or accessories
    • F24T2010/53Methods for installation
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F28HEAT EXCHANGE IN GENERAL
    • F28DHEAT-EXCHANGE APPARATUS, NOT PROVIDED FOR IN ANOTHER SUBCLASS, IN WHICH THE HEAT-EXCHANGE MEDIA DO NOT COME INTO DIRECT CONTACT
    • F28D20/00Heat storage plants or apparatus in general; Regenerative heat-exchange apparatus not covered by groups F28D17/00 or F28D19/00
    • F28D20/0052Heat storage plants or apparatus in general; Regenerative heat-exchange apparatus not covered by groups F28D17/00 or F28D19/00 using the ground body or aquifers as heat storage medium
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F28HEAT EXCHANGE IN GENERAL
    • F28FDETAILS OF HEAT-EXCHANGE AND HEAT-TRANSFER APPARATUS, OF GENERAL APPLICATION
    • F28F2200/00Prediction; Simulation; Testing
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F28HEAT EXCHANGE IN GENERAL
    • F28FDETAILS OF HEAT-EXCHANGE AND HEAT-TRANSFER APPARATUS, OF GENERAL APPLICATION
    • F28F2250/00Arrangements for modifying the flow of the heat exchange media, e.g. flow guiding means; Particular flow patterns
    • F28F2250/08Fluid driving means, e.g. pumps, fans
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F28HEAT EXCHANGE IN GENERAL
    • F28FDETAILS OF HEAT-EXCHANGE AND HEAT-TRANSFER APPARATUS, OF GENERAL APPLICATION
    • F28F2265/00Safety or protection arrangements; Arrangements for preventing malfunction
    • F28F2265/10Safety or protection arrangements; Arrangements for preventing malfunction for preventing overheating, e.g. heat shields
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F28HEAT EXCHANGE IN GENERAL
    • F28FDETAILS OF HEAT-EXCHANGE AND HEAT-TRANSFER APPARATUS, OF GENERAL APPLICATION
    • F28F2265/00Safety or protection arrangements; Arrangements for preventing malfunction
    • F28F2265/14Safety or protection arrangements; Arrangements for preventing malfunction for preventing damage by freezing, e.g. for accommodating volume expansion

Abstract

Thermal Moisture Enhanced Gradient Strata (TMEGS) for Heat Exchangers optimizes the performance of energy flows for building heating, cooling, hot water, and industrial processes. TMEGS are temperature and moisture control layers which reduce the cost of closed loop ground heat exchangers and increase heat exchanger performance by improving energy transfer between solar, geothermal, process heat and renewable energy exchangers. Circuit optimized thermally active building structures (COTABS) configure heat exchangers and thermal energy strata for application specific requirements. TMEGS integrated with COTABS is a scalable and interoperable carbon-free, planet friendly architecture for net zero energy buildings. Embodiments include the use of recycled materials, waste tire derived aggregate, nanofluids, phase change materials, cathodic protection, and integrated microprocessor and client-server controls.

Description

    CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
  • This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 62/593,205 filed on Nov. 30, 2017 titled “Thermal Moisture Enhanced Gradient Stratum” which is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety for all that is taught and disclosed therein.
  • BACKGROUND
  • More energy is consumed by buildings than any other segment of the U.S. economy, including transportation or industry, with almost 41% of total U.S. energy consumption devoted to take care of our nation's home and commercial building energy needs. In the past three decades total building primary energy consumption increased 50%. Space heating, space cooling, and lighting accounted for close to half of all energy consumed in the buildings sector. More than $400B is spent each year to power homes and commercial buildings, consuming more than 70% of all electricity used in the U.S. and contributing to almost 40% of the nation's carbon dioxide emissions. The Energy Information Administration estimates that energy consumption in buildings—primarily electricity and natural gas—will exceed 50 quads in the next two decades. If the U.S. can reduce building energy use by 20%, approximately $80B would be saved annually on energy bills, and significant reduction of greenhouse gas emissions would be realized. To achieve this goal, thirty states have adopted energy efficiency policies designed to lower the growth of electricity consumption by using electricity more efficiently. The U.S. Department of Defense has set net zero energy and carbon reduction goals targeted for 2030.
  • SUMMARY
  • This Summary is provided to introduce in a simplified form a selection of concepts that are further described below in the Detailed Description. This Summary is not intended to identify key or essential features of the claimed subject matter, nor is it intended to be used to limit the scope of the claimed subject matter.
  • The proposed innovation, Thermal Moisture Enhanced Gradient Strata for Heat Exchangers optimizes the performance of existing renewable energy components for building heating, cooling, hot water, and industrial processes. These integrated hydronic applications combining renewable solar thermal and geothermal resources with radiant heating and cooling have the potential to reduce building energy use by 50% while increasing occupant comfort, safety, and indoor environmental quality—at substantially less cost than the energy saved. In one embodiment, Thermal and Moisture Enhanced Gradient Strata (TMEGS) are temperature and moisture control layers which reduce the cost of closed loop ground heat exchanger (GHEX) installations and increase GHEX performance by improving energy transfer. With increasing world population and urbanization, the depletion of natural resources and generation of waste materials is becoming a considerable challenge. In another embodiment using tire derived aggregate, TMEGS will reduce the number of waste tires sent to landfills. TMEGS with ground source heat pumps (GSHP) and solar thermal arrays eliminate the carbon footprint and greenhouse gases produced by fossil fuel combustion for building heating and hot water. TMEGS integrated with thermally active building structures is a scalable and interoperable carbon-free, planet friendly architecture for net zero energy buildings. Embodiments include the use of waste tire derived aggregate and tire steel cord, nanofluids, phase change materials, cathodic protection and integrated controls.
  • The detailed description below describes the embodiments for the Thermal Moisture Enhanced Gradient Strata for Heat Exchangers. The invention described enables innovations over prior art related to the moisture retention of surface water in horizontal heat exchangers, providing thermal isolation of a shallow GHEX from seasonal and diurnal surface temperatures, configuring phase change materials to improve GHEX thermal capacity and thermal conductivity in passive and active implementations, improving the utility of solar thermal applications integrated with GHEX performance, enabling cathodic protection coincident to GHEX installation, and creating an integrated systems architecture for net zero buildings utilizing circuit optimized thermally active building structures (COTABS).
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWINGS
  • FIG. 1 shows a schematic diagram of the TMEGS Configurations and Orientation to Multiple Heat Exchangers in an embodiment of the invention.
  • FIGS. 2a-2f show six schematic diagrams of Heat Exchangers Orientation to TMEGS Strata: Thermal, Moisture, Nanofluid, Electrical, Active and Stratum in embodiments of the invention.
  • FIG. 3a shows a prior art Solar Heat Exchanger.
  • FIGS. 3b and 3c show schematic diagrams of TMEGS Direct Absorption Solar Heat Exchanger.
  • FIGS. 4a through 4c show TMEGS Configurations in Vertical Applications with Circuit Optimized Thermally Active Building Structures (COTABS).
  • FIG. 5 shows Embodiments of TMEGS Materials and Methods.
  • FIG. 6 shows TMEGS Implementation for a Ground Heat Exchanger in a Cut and Fill Application.
  • FIG. 7 shows the Thermal Performance of a Circuit Optimized Thermally Active Building Structure Embodiment.
  • To assist in the understanding of the present disclosure the following list of components and associated numbering found in the drawings is provided herein:
  • Table of Components
    Component #
    Built Structure 2
    Ambient Outdoor Environment 4
    Solar Energy 6
    Moisture 8
    Second Earthen Stratum 10
    Thermally Resistive Stratum 12
    Moisture Permeable Stratum 14
    Moisture Injection Piping 16
    Temperature and Moisture Sensors 18
    Ground Heat Exchanger 20
    Moisture Impermeable Stratum 22
    Electrical Cathode Stratum 24
    Heat Transfer Piping 26
    First Heat Transfer Fluid (within) 28
    Conditioned Space 30
    First Heat Exchanger 32
    Entering Temperature Sensor 34
    Heat Transfer Device 36
    Thermally Resistive Stratum 38
    First Phase Change Material Stratum 40
    Fourth Heat Exchanger 42
    Thermally Conductive Stratum 44
    Electrical Anode Stratum 46
    First Earthen Stratum 48
    Second Phase Change Material Stratum 50
    Third Heat Exchanger 52
    Client-Server Architecture 54
    Microprocessor Controller 56
    Communications Module 58
    User Interface 60
    Heat Cool Communications Device 62
    Weather Climate External Device 64
    Moisture Source 66
    Moisture Control Valve 68
    Impressed Current 70
    Electrode Ground Heat Exchanger 72
    Electrode Building 74
    Solar Photovoltaic Array 76
    Thermally Resistive Stratum 78
    First Heat Exchanger 80
    External Stratum 82
    Moisture Permeable Stratum 84
    Moisture Impermeable Stratum 86
    Thermal Storage Stratum 88
    Thermally Conductive Stratum 90
    Second Heat Exchanger 92
    Second Heat Transfer Fluid 94
    Third Heat Exchanger 96
    Process Energy 98
    Active Moisture Injection 100
    Electrical Anode Stratum 102
    Electrical Cathode Stratum 104
    Impressed Current 106
    Heat Exchanger Piping 108
    Supply Piping 110
    Return Piping 112
    Backplate Absorber 114
    Thermally Resistive Stratum 116
    Thermal Storage Stratum 118
    Direct Absorption Nanofluid 120
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION
  • Referring now to the Figures, like reference numerals and names refer to structurally and/or functionally similar elements thereof, and if objects depicted in the figures that are covered by another object, as well as the tag line for the element number thereto, may be shown in dashed lines.
  • Referring now to the Figures, FIG. 1 shows a schematic diagram of the TMEGS Configurations and Orientation to Multiple Heat Exchangers in an embodiment of the invention. In the simplest embodiment TMEGS controls the temperature of a heat transfer fluid into a heat exchanger to increase the energy efficiency of the system process. This simple yet powerful heat exchange innovation enables other embodiments wherein TMEGS provides efficient energy solutions for net zero energy building heating, cooling, hot water and industrial processes.
  • A built structure 2 is within an ambient outdoor environment 4 subject to conditions including but not limited to air temperature, ground temperature, humidity, pressure altitude, wind, solar energy 6 and collection of moisture 8 from precipitation, ground water, and subsurface water. In a preferred embodiment, TMEGS enables more efficient heat exchange to heat and cool the conditioned space 30 within the built structure 2. In a preferred embodiment, a first earthen stratum 48 is excavated to configure a ground heat exchanger 20 consisting of heat transfer piping 26 in thermal connection with the first earthen stratum 48 and circulating a first heat transfer fluid 28 within heat transfer piping 26 using a heat transfer device 36 fluidly connected to the ground heat exchanger 20 and fluidly connected to a first heat exchanger 32.
  • The ground heat exchanger 20 is selected from the group consisting of a horizontal ground heat exchanger, a horizontal slinky heat exchanger, a vertical slinky heat exchanger, a horizontal trench heat exchanger, a horizontal heat exchanger configured with serpentine piping, a horizontal heat exchanger configured with counterflow piping, a horizontal heat exchanger configured with parallel piping, a ground heat exchanger configured with vertical helical coils, a ground heat exchanger configured with horizontal helical coils, a below grade thermally active building structure, and a horizontal components of a vertical ground heat exchanger.
  • The heat transfer device 36 is selected from the group consisting of a single speed pump, a multi-speed pump, a variable speed pump, a single speed compressor, a multi-speed compressor, and a variable speed compressor. The first heat transfer fluid 28 is selected from the group consisting of refrigerant, water, deionized water, glycol/water solution, dielectric fluids, polyalphaolefin, fluorocarbons, antifreeze mixture, ethylene glycol, propylene glycol, methanol, ethanol, brine, and nanofluid.
  • The first heat exchanger 32 is selected from the group consisting of a hydronic heat exchanger, a refrigerant heat exchanger, a solar thermal heat exchanger, a thermally active building structure, a snow melt heat exchanger, a process heat exchanger, a water-to-air heat exchanger, a thermal storage device, a boiler, a chiller, a cooling tower, a combined heat and power unit, an air conditioner, an absorption chiller, a direct exchange ground source heat pump, an air source heat pump, a water-to-water ground source heat pump, a water-to-air ground source heat pump, and a dual source heat pump.
  • A moisture permeable stratum 14 is configured relative to the at least one ground heat exchanger in a proximity to allow moisture penetration and to limit penetration by soil fines. The thermally resistive stratum 12 configured in thermal connection with the ground heat exchanger 20, and then backfilled with a second earthen stratum 10 in thermal connection with the thermally resistive stratum 12 and proximate to the moisture permeable stratum 14 to allow moisture penetration and to limit penetration by soil fines.
  • According to one embodiment the heat transfer device 36 is configured with an entering temperature sensor 34 in signal communications with a microprocessor controller 56 in signal communication with at least one moisture control valve 66 in fluid connection to the moisture injection piping 16 and controlled to open and to close based on at least one signal received from the microprocessor controller to maintain the moisture in the ground heat exchanger 20.
  • According to the embodiment shown in FIG. 1, the ground heat exchanger 20 is configured in a horizontal orientation. Other embodiments include configuring the ground heat exchanger 20 in a vertical orientation or an orientation between horizontal and vertical.
  • According to the embodiment shown in FIG. 1, the ground heat exchanger 20 is constructed on-site. In one embodiment the ground heat exchanger 20 is a pre-manufactured assembly. According to one embodiment the ground heat exchanger 20 is a combination of pre-manufactured and site-constructed assemblies.
  • According to one embodiment the ground heat exchanger 20 is configured at any depth. According to one embodiment the ground heat exchanger is configured at a depth below the surface of the ground not exceeding four meters. According to one embodiment the ground heat exchanger 20 is configured below a body of water.
  • According to one embodiment the moisture permeable stratum 14 and the thermally resistive stratum 12 comprise the same material selected from the group consisting of tire derived aggregate, organic material, inorganic material, recycled material, manufactured material, homogenous material, and heterogeneous material.
  • According to one embodiment the first earthen stratum 48 is augmented with at least one additive material which improves the thermal performance of the first earthen stratum. The at least one additive material comprises at least one of a material with a higher thermal conductivity; a material with a higher thermal diffusivity, a material with a higher heat transfer coefficient, a material with a higher specific heat capacity, and a material with a higher moisture retention capacity.
  • According to one embodiment the first earthen stratum 48 is augmented with at least one additive material selected from the group consisting of recycled tire steel cord, glass, ceramics, silica sand, bentonite clay, graphite, metal shavings, mineral aggregates, blast furnace slag, fly ash, igneous material, and ceramics.
  • According to one embodiment a moisture impermeable stratum 22 is configured between the first earthen stratum 48 and the ground heat exchanger 20.
  • According to one embodiment the moisture impermeable stratum 22 is configured to fully contain an interior volume of the ground heat exchanger 20 to impede the circulation of water or another fluid outside of the ground heat exchanger 20.
  • According to one embodiment the moisture impermeable stratum 22 comprises at least one material selected from the group consisting of mineral, soil, natural material, manufactured material, organic material, and inorganic material.
  • According to one embodiment of controlling the heat transfer device 36 with a microprocessor controller 56, the microprocessor controller 56 is selected from the group consisting of a microprocessor controller integral to the heat transfer device, a microprocessor controller with a self-contained algorithm, a microprocessor controller operated through a user interface, a software algorithm, and a cloud-based algorithm.
  • According to one embodiment of sending by the microprocessor controller 56 a control signal to the at least one heat transfer device 36 causes the at least one heat transfer device 36 to circulate the first heat transfer fluid 28 to the at least one heat exchanger 32 at a flow rate calculated by the microprocessor controller 56. In calculating the flow rate, the microprocessor controller 56 uses at least one of: an entering water temperature into the at least one heat exchanger, a leaving water temperature from the at least one heat exchanger, a change in a temperature between the entering water temperature and the leaving water temperature passing through the at least one heat exchanger, at least one weather datum, at least one climate datum, a heating load, and a cooling load.
  • According to one embodiment of controlling the heat transfer device 36 with a microprocessor controller 56, the microprocessor controller 56 sends, using an open loop control means based on an optimized system model, the flow rate to the heat transfer device 36.
  • According to one embodiment of controlling the heat transfer device 36 with a microprocessor controller 56, the microprocessor controller 56 sends, using a closed loop control means in which the result of an input is fed back to the microprocessor controller as an input for a system model optimization, the flow rate to the heat transfer device 36.
  • According to one embodiment enabling a communication between the microprocessor controller 56 and at least one device, a communication medium is selected from the group consisting of a communications module 58, a user interface 60, a weather climate external device 64 communicating weather data, a weather climate external device 64 communicating climate data, a heat cool communications device 62 communicating a heating load, and a heat cool communications device 62 communicating a cooling load.
  • According to one embodiment the microprocessor controller 56 is a component of a client-server architecture 54 wherein the client-server architecture 54 is selected from the group consisting of BACnet, Modbus, LonWorks, a wireless client-server architecture, a client-server architecture using a user interface, a client-server architecture using a web browser, a client-server architecture using a web server, a client-server architecture using a cloud-based server, a client-server architecture of a remote building controls system, and a client-server architecture controlling a plurality of microprocessor controllers.
  • According to one embodiment of configuring at least one moisture control valve 68 in fluid connection with a moisture source 66 controlling the at least one moisture control valve 68 to open and to close increases a moisture in the at least one ground heat exchanger 20.
  • According to one embodiment of controlling the at least one moisture control valve 68 to open and to close to increase a moisture in the at least one ground heat exchanger 20, the at least one moisture control valve 68 is controlled to open and to close based on at least one control signal received from the microprocessor controller 56. At least one sensor is selected from the group consisting of temperature and moisture sensors 18 within the ground heat exchanger 20, a temperature sensor within the ground heat exchanger 20, a moisture sensor within the ground heat exchanger 20, and an entering temperature sensor 34 into the heat transfer device 36.
  • According to one embodiment configuring a phase change stratum (not shown) between a thermally resistive stratum 12 and a ground heat exchanger 20 in fluid connection to a first heat exchanger 32 with the phase change material stratum in thermal connection with the ground heat exchanger 20 which is in thermal connection with the first earthen stratum 48.
  • The phase change material is selected from the group consisting of bee's wax, paraffin, crystalline paraffin, salt hydrates, crystalline polymers, naphthalene, glycol mixture, stable nanofluid, paraffin-based nanofluid, and paraffin-aluminum nanofluid.
  • According to one embodiment a third heat exchanger 52 is configured in fluid connection to a second heat exchanger (not shown) configured with and in between a thermally resistive stratum 12 and phase change material stratum (not shown) in thermal connection with the second heat exchanger and a ground heat exchanger 20 wherein the phase change material is selected from the group consisting of bee's wax, paraffin, crystalline paraffin, salt hydrates, crystalline polymers, naphthalene, glycol mixture, stable nanofluid, paraffin-based nanofluid, and paraffin-aluminum nanofluid.
  • The phase change material stratum is selected from the group consisting of a phase change material stratum and a phase change material stratum in a moisture impermeable enclosure.
  • A second heat transfer device fluidly connected to the second heat exchanger circulates a second heat transfer fluid to the third heat exchanger 52. At least one temperature sensor in thermal connection with the second heat transfer fluid and in signal communication with a microprocessor controller 56 sends at least one control signal to the second heat transfer device to circulate the second heat transfer fluid to the third heat exchanger at a flow rate calculated by the microprocessor controller 56.
  • The second heat transfer device is selected from the group consisting of a single speed pump, a multi-speed pump, a variable speed pump, a single speed compressor, a multi-speed compressor, and a variable speed compressor.
  • The second heat transfer fluid is selected from the group consisting of refrigerant, water, deionized water, glycol/water solution, dielectric fluids, polyalphaolefin, fluorocarbons, antifreeze mixture, ethylene glycol, propylene glycol, methanol, ethanol, brine, and nanofluid.
  • The second heat exchanger is selected from the group consisting of a hydronic heat exchanger, a refrigerant heat exchanger, a thermally active building structure, a snow melt heat exchanger, a process heat exchanger, a water-to-air heat exchanger, a subterranean thermal storage device, and a subterranean cooling tower.
  • The another heat exchanger (not shown) is selected from the group consisting of a hydronic heat exchanger, a refrigerant heat exchanger, a solar thermal heat exchanger, a thermally active building structure, a snow melt heat exchanger, a process heat exchanger, a water-to-air heat exchanger, a thermal storage device, a boiler, a chiller, a cooling tower, a combined heat and power unit, an air conditioner, an absorption chiller, a direct exchange ground source heat pump, an air source heat pump, a water-to-water ground source heat pump, a water-to-air ground source heat pump, and a dual source heat pump, which all are preferred embodiments
  • According to one embodiment for controlling a temperature of a heat transfer fluid entering into the another heat exchanger (not shown), configuring a fourth heat exchanger 42 in thermal connection with and in between a phase change material stratum 40 and a thermally resistive stratum 38; configuring a heat transfer device (not shown) to circulate the heat transfer fluid (not shown) in the fourth heat exchanger 42 and in fluid connection to the another heat exchanger (not shown); and configuring a temperature sensor in thermal connection with the heat transfer fluid and in signal communication with a microprocessor controller 56 which sends at least one control signal to the heat transfer device (not shown) to circulate the heat transfer fluid (not shown) into the fourth heat exchanger 42 fluidly connected to the another heat exchanger at a flow rate calculated by the microprocessor controller 56.
  • The phase change material comprising the phase change material stratum 40 is selected from the group consisting of bee's wax, paraffin, crystalline paraffin, salt hydrates, crystalline polymers, naphthalene, glycol mixture, stable nanofluid, paraffin-based nanofluid, and paraffin-aluminum nanofluid.
  • The phase change material stratum 40 may also be selected from the group consisting of a phase change material stratum and a phase change material stratum in a moisture impermeable enclosure.
  • The fourth heat exchanger 42 is selected from the group consisting of a hydronic heat exchanger, a refrigerant heat exchanger, a solar thermal heat exchanger, a thermally active building structure, a snow melt heat exchanger, a process heat exchanger, a water-to-air heat exchanger, a thermal storage device, and a cooling tower.
  • The fourth heat exchanger 42 may also be selected from the group consisting of a heat exchanger configured with internal piping containing the heat transfer fluid attached to a thermal collector and configured in a serpentine pattern and a heat exchanger configured with internal piping containing the heat transfer fluid attached to a thermal collector and configured in a counterflow pattern.
  • The another heat exchanger is selected from the group consisting of a hydronic heat exchanger, a refrigerant heat exchanger, a solar thermal heat exchanger, a ground heat exchanger, a thermally active building structure, a snow melt heat exchanger, a process heat exchanger, a water-to-air heat exchanger, a thermal storage device, a boiler, a chiller, a cooling tower, a combined heat and power unit, an air conditioner, an absorption chiller, a direct exchange ground source heat pump, an air source heat pump, a water-to-water ground source heat pump, a water-to-air ground source heat pump, and a dual source heat pump.
  • The heat transfer device is selected from the group consisting of a single speed pump, a multi-speed pump, a variable speed pump, a single speed compressor, a multi-speed compressor, and a variable speed compressor.
  • The second heat transfer fluid is selected from the group consisting of a of refrigerant, water, deionized water, glycol/water solution, dielectric fluids, polyalphaolefin, fluorocarbons, antifreeze mixture, ethylene glycol, propylene glycol, methanol, ethanol, brine, nanofluid, and direct absorption nanofluid.
  • The microprocessor controller 56 is selected from the group consisting of a microprocessor controller integral to the heat transfer device, a microprocessor controller with a self-contained algorithm, a microprocessor controller operated through a user interface, a software algorithm, and a cloud-based algorithm.
  • According to one embodiment the fourth heat exchanger 42 is configured in thermal connection with a thermally conductive stratum 72. According to one embodiment, the another heat exchanger is the third heat exchanger 52 configured as a solar heat exchanger in thermal connection with a second phase change material stratum 50 wherein the phase change material comprising the second phase change material stratum 50 is selected from the group consisting of bee's wax, paraffin, crystalline paraffin, salt hydrates, crystalline polymers, naphthalene, glycol mixture, stable nanofluid, paraffin-based nanofluid, and paraffin-aluminum nanofluid.
  • According to one embodiment, the another heat exchanger is configured as a solar thermal heat exchanger along with configuring the heat transfer fluid within the another heat exchanger as a direct absorption nanofluid; configuring the at least one another heat exchanger to contain the heat transfer fluid in an enclosed volume without internal piping attached to a thermal collector; and configuring a fluid connection between the heat transfer device and the heat transfer fluid within the enclosed volume of the at least one another heat exchanger; and configuring a heat transfer device to circulate the heat transfer fluid in the at least one another heat exchanger and in fluid connection to the at least one fourth heat exchanger 42.
  • According to one embodiment to prevent corrosion of the ground heat exchanger 20 and the building structure 2, an electrically conductive stratum is configured using either an electrical cathode stratum 24 or an electrical anode stratum 46 in contact with the first earthen stratum 48; configuring the ground heat exchanger 20 in thermal contact with the first earthen stratum 48; configuring an electrical circuit connection between the electrically conductive stratum and at least one electrical conductor as the electrode ground heat exchanger 72 or the electrode building 74; configuring an electrical circuit connection between the electrical conductor and at least one of: the electrode building 74, the electrode ground heat exchanger 72, and at least one of the electrode building 74 and the electrode ground heat exchanger 72; and configuring the ground heat exchanger 20 in contact with the second earthen stratum 20.
  • The electrically conductive stratum is selected from the group consisting of a cathode material, an anode material in electrical circuit connection to an impressed current 70, and an anode material in electrical circuit connection to an impressed current 70 generated by the solar photovoltaic array 76.
  • According to one embodiment, the electrical conductor is bonded to at least one of: the electrode building 74, the electrode ground heat exchanger 72, and at least one of the electrode building 74 and the electrode ground heat exchanger 72, wherein the electrically conductive stratum is selected from the group consisting of a cathode material, an anode material in electrical circuit connection to an impressed current, and an anode material in electrical circuit connection to an impressed current generated by a solar photovoltaic array.
  • According to one embodiment, the first earthen stratum 48 is augmented with at least one additive material improving the electrical conductivity of the first earthen stratum 48, wherein the at least one additive material is selected from the group consisting of tire steel cord, metal shavings, graphite, glass, sand, mineral, salt, clay, moisture retention material, and electrolyte.
  • FIG. 2a shows one embodiment where a first heat exchanger 80 is thermally isolated with a thermally resistive stratum 78 providing isolation from seasonal and diurnal surface temperatures prevalent in the upper external stratum 82. For GHEX applications the thermal contact between the first heat exchanger 80 and the deep earth temperature of the lower external stratum 82 provides energy efficient heat transfer.
  • FIG. 2b shows one embodiment to improve thermal conductivity at the first heat exchanger 80. Surface moisture flows from the upper external stratum 82 through a moisture impermeable stratum 84. The moisture impermeable stratum 84 enables moisture flow while restricting the penetration of soil fines which may negatively affect first heat exchanger 80 thermal performance. For applications with lower external stratum 82 with low moisture properties, the moisture impermeable stratum 86 retains moisture at the first heat exchanger 80.
  • FIG. 2c shows one embodiment with a thermal storage stratum in thermal contact with the first heat exchanger 80 to regulate thermal load, increase thermal conductivity, increase heat exchanger specific heat capacity, and meet process heat demands higher than heat transfer capacity of the lower external stratum 82. In one embodiment the thermal storage stratum comprises a phase change material as simple as water for cooling applications, and in one embodiment comprising a stable nanofluids. For cooling applications, water with propylene glycol is acknowledged in the art as providing higher thermal storage capacity due to latent heat of fusion during a phase change from ice to water. Paraffin-based phase change materials provide good thermal performance for solar heat exchangers due to medium temperature operating range.
  • FIGS. 2d and 2e show an embodiment where the thermal performance of the first heat exchanger 80 is improved with thermal contact to a second heat exchanger 92 in fluid connection to a third heat exchanger 96 with a second heat transfer fluid 94. In one embodiment the heat exchange is improved by using high performance heat transfer fluids in either the first heat exchanger 80, or the second heat transfer fluid 94. An embodiment is the first heat exchanger 80 configured as a ground heat exchanger; the second heat exchanger 92 in fluid connection to a third heat exchanger 96 as a solar thermal heat exchanger absorbing process energy 98 from the sun. For chilling applications, one embodiment uses a cooling process whereby the second heat exchanger 96 is used to transfer heat from the first heat exchanger 80 to the second heat exchanger 96 which releases process energy 98.
  • FIG. 2f shows active TMEGS applications embodiments for active moisture injection 100 into a first heat exchanger 80, and cathodic protection configuring an electrical anode stratum 102 with impressed current 106 and an electrical cathode stratum 104. In one embodiment the cathodic protection comprises an electrical anode stratum 102 with impressed current 106 or an electrical cathode stratum 104. As a moisture enhanced thermal conductive stratum 90, electrical conductivity is increased between the first exchanger 80 and the electrical cathode stratum 104.
  • FIG. 3a shows prior art for a solar thermal heat exchanger. This heat exchanger comprises an enclosure containing heat exchanger piping 108 fluidly connected to a supply piping 110 and return piping 112. The heat exchanger piping 108 is physically attached to the enclosure and a backplate absorber 114. The backplate absorber 114 serves as a collector of solar thermal energy and transfers this heat to the heat transfer fluid circulating in the heat exchanger piping 108.
  • FIG. 3b shows one TMEGS embodiment comprising a thermal storage stratum 118 in thermal contact with the backplate absorber 114.
  • FIG. 3c shows one TMEGS embodiment of a direct absorption solar collector which comprises a direct absorption nanofluid 120 which has the properties to collect solar thermal energy. The direct absorption nanofluid 120 is fully contained within the solar collector without heat exchanger piping 108 or a backplate absorber 114. The direct absorption nanofluid 120 is fluidly connected with another heat exchanger through the supply piping 110 and return piping 112. The direct absorption solar collector comprising the thermal storage stratum 118 in thermal contact with the direct absorption nanofluid 120 is an improvement over prior art.
  • FIGS. 4a through 4c show TMEGS Configurations in Vertical Applications with Circuit Optimized Thermally Active Building Structures (COTABS). A thermally active building structure incorporates hydronic heating and cooling into the thermal mass of the building structure. When comprised with the TMEGS innovation and optimized heat exchanger configuration, COTABS reduces first cost for GHEX and integrated heating and cooling systems, with a 50% reduction in operating costs derived from integrated hydronic performance over conventional forced air systems. COTABS is an enabling architecture for net zero energy buildings with low carbon footprints.
  • Prior figures show TMEGS as horizontal assemblies. In other embodiments, TMEGS can be configured in any orientation. FIG. 4a shows an embodiment of TMEGS thermal stratum configured between a wall and a heat exchanger in thermal contact with an earthen stratum. In one embodiment with TMEGS configured with a thermally resistive and moisture impermeable stratum, the heat exchanger is thermally isolated from the wall. A typical application would be a ground heat exchanger operating in a chilled state while heating a building structure. In one embodiment the TMEGS is configured with a thermally conductive and moisture impermeable stratum, wherein the heat exchanger is thermally connected with the wall. A typical application would be a passive cooling application where the earthen stratum cools the wall through direct thermal contact.
  • FIG. 4b shows a similar application as shown in FIG. 4a . with the modification of a COTABS comprising the wall containing a heat exchanger. In one embodiment, the thermal layer depicted is a passive TMEGS stratum comprising a thermal storage stratum in thermal contact with the COTABS.
  • FIG. 4c shows an embodiment of COTABS with dual heat exchangers with TMEGS layers between the COTABS and earthen stratum exposed to environmental conditions to the left and earthen stratum configured under a building structure on the right.
  • FIG. 5 shows Embodiments of TMEGS Materials and Methods as described in this innovation. TMEGS embodiments include earthen materials, heterogenous and homogenous materials, and can be constructed on-site or manufactured. Through the described embodiments the TMEGS layers provide improvements over the art. These layers are configured as homogenous or heterogenous installations. Active or dynamic embodiments improve existing heat exchange over prior art with passive or static embodiments provide higher energy efficiency than vapor-compression heating and cooling processes.
  • The application of water's properties on heat transfer have been considered to optimize TMEGS performance. As a phase change material embodiment, water and water-glycol mixtures are a cost effective and efficient means to achieve efficient heat transfer and thermal energy storage.
  • The most promising innovations relate to the use of nanofluids as phase change materials to comprise TMEGS layers. Embodiments include using nanofluids in passive applications for thermal storage strata, using thermal transfer fluids comprising nanofluids, and using direct absorption nanofluids for solar thermal heat exchangers.
  • The presence of moisture has been shown to most directly affect thermal conductivity. Hygroscopic or desiccant layers are used to control moisture to affect heat exchange. The chemical properties of soils such as salinity affect thermal conductivity affecting heat exchanger performances. TMEGS embodiments include soil additives to achieve these goals.
  • When TMEGS implementations incorporate cathodic protection for the ground heat exchanger or the building in the GHEX configuration, installation costs for cathodic protection are reduced. When integrated with impressed current cathodic protection known in the art, anode stratum in contact with earthen stratum provides cathodic protection to building structure, storage tanks, and equipment. Grounding the electrical systems provides additional protection at reduced cost and higher efficiency than other means.
  • FIG. 6 shows TMEGS Implementation for a Ground Heat Exchanger in a Cut and Fill Application. The upper graphic shows the undisturbed landscape prior to excavating for a built structure. The lower graphic shows how the excavated fill is then used to backfill a horizontal ground heat exchanger configured as a TMEGS embodiment. This application provides substantial cost savings for GHEX installations by installing the GHEX in an area that is already excavated. Prior art requires the horizontal GHEX to be installed at sufficient depth to provide energy efficient exchange. By thermally isolating the GHEX from surface conditions and improving moisture content at the GHEX, shallow horizontal GHEX installations are enabled. In one embodiment providing substantial for reducing waste from tires, a tire derived aggregate is used as the thermal stratum in these shallow installations.
  • FIG. 7 shows the Thermal Performance of a Circuit Optimized Thermally Active Building Structure Embodiment. The Circuit Physical Layout is a counterflow configuration which eliminates hot and cold sections of the heat exchanger. The circuit temperature analysis graphic shown that the heat delivered across the heat exchanger is consistent with moderate temperatures. This heat exchanger performance is consistent regardless of the change in elevation of the 3D view. It is uncommon to configure horizontal GHEX applications as counterflow configurations. With TMEGS configured as a snow melt heat exchanger as shown in this embodiment, the heat transfer fluid from this application can be used for process cooling applications in the winter or process heating in the summer. With the possibilities created by efficient heat exchange for heating and cooling, TMEGS establishes a baseline architecture for net zero energy and low energy buildings.
  • Although the subject matter has been described in language specific to structural features and/or methodological acts, it is to be understood that the subject matter defined in the appended claims is not necessarily limited to the specific features or acts described above. Rather, the specific features and acts described above are disclosed as example forms of implementing the claims. It will be understood by those skilled in the art that many changes in construction and widely differing embodiments and applications will suggest themselves without departing from the scope of the disclosed subject matter.

Claims (55)

What is claimed is:
1. A method for controlling a temperature of a first heat transfer fluid entering into an at least one heat exchanger, the method comprising the steps of:
(a) configuring an at least one ground heat exchanger in thermal contact with a first earthen stratum;
(b) configuring a moisture permeable stratum relative to the at least one ground heat exchanger to allow moisture penetration and to limit penetration by soil fines;
(c) configuring a thermally resistive stratum in thermal contact with the at least one ground heat exchanger;
(d) configuring the thermally resistive stratum in thermal contact with a second earthen stratum; and
(e) circulating the first heat transfer fluid into the at least one ground heat exchanger and into the at least one heat exchanger with an at least one heat transfer device in fluid connection with the at least one ground heat exchanger and the at least one heat exchanger.
2. The method according to claim 1 wherein configuring steps (b) and (c) further comprise the step of:
configuring the moisture permeable stratum and the thermally resistive stratum to comprise a same material selected from the group consisting of tire derived aggregate, organic material, inorganic material, recycled material, manufactured material, homogenous material, and heterogeneous material.
3. The method according to claim 1 further comprising the step of:
orienting the at least one ground heat exchanger in at least a one of a horizontal orientation, a vertical orientation, or an orientation between horizontal and vertical.
4. The method according to claim 1 wherein the first heat transfer fluid is selected from the group consisting of refrigerant, water, deionized water, glycol/water solution, dielectric fluids, polyalphaolefin, fluorocarbons, antifreeze mixture, ethylene glycol, propylene glycol, methanol, ethanol, brine, and nanofluid.
5. The method according to claim 1 wherein the at least one heat transfer device is selected from the group consisting of a single speed pump, a multi-speed pump, a variable speed pump, a single speed compressor, a multi-speed compressor, and a variable speed compressor.
6. The method according to claim 1 wherein the at least one heat exchanger is selected from the group consisting of a hydronic heat exchanger, a refrigerant heat exchanger, a solar thermal heat exchanger, a thermally active building structure, a snow melt heat exchanger, a process heat exchanger, a water-to-air heat exchanger, a thermal storage device, a boiler, a chiller, a cooling tower, a combined heat and power unit, an air conditioner, an absorption chiller, a direct exchange ground source heat pump, an air source heat pump, a water-to-water ground source heat pump, a water-to-air ground source heat pump, and a dual source heat pump.
7. The method according to claim 1 wherein the at least one ground heat exchanger is selected from the group consisting of a horizontal ground heat exchanger, a horizontal slinky heat exchanger, a vertical slinky heat exchanger, a horizontal trench heat exchanger, a horizontal heat exchanger configured with serpentine piping, a horizontal heat exchanger configured with counterflow piping, a horizontal heat exchanger configured with parallel piping, a ground heat exchanger configured with vertical helical coils, a ground heat exchanger configured with horizontal helical coils, a below grade thermally active building structure, and a horizontal components of a vertical ground heat exchanger.
8. The method according to claim 1 further comprising the step of:
augmenting the first earthen stratum with at least one additive material improving the thermal performance of the first earthen stratum.
9. The method according to claim 8 wherein the at least one additive material comprises at least one of:
a material with a higher thermal conductivity;
a material with a higher thermal diffusivity;
a material with a higher heat transfer coefficient;
a material with a higher specific heat capacity; and
a material with a higher moisture retention capacity.
10. The method according to claim 9 wherein the at least one additive material is selected from the group consisting of recycled tire steel cord, glass, graphite, metal shavings, mineral aggregates, blast furnace slag, fly ash, silica sand, bentonite clay, igneous material, and ceramics.
11. The method according to claim 1 wherein the at least one ground heat exchanger is selected from the group consisting of a ground heat exchanger constructed on-site, a ground heat exchanger as a pre-manufactured assembly, and a combination of a ground heat exchanger constructed on-site and a pre-manufactured assembly.
12. The method according to claim 1 further comprising the step of:
configuring the at least one ground heat exchanger at a depth below a surface of the ground not exceeding four meters.
13. The method according to claim 1 further comprising the step of:
configuring the at least one ground heat exchanger below a body of water.
14. The method according to claim 1 further comprising the step of:
configuring a second moisture impermeable stratum between the at least one ground heat exchanger and the first earthen stratum.
15. The method according to claim 14 wherein the second moisture impermeable stratum comprises at least one material selected from the group consisting of mineral, soil, natural material, manufactured material, organic material, and inorganic material.
16. The method according to claim 14 further comprising the step of:
configuring the second moisture impermeable stratum to fully contain an interior volume of the at least one ground heat exchanger for impeding a circulation of a fluid outside of and in thermal connection with the at least one ground heat exchanger.
17. The method according to claim 1 further comprising the steps of:
configuring at least one moisture control valve in fluid connection with a moisture source; and
controlling the at least one moisture control valve to open and to close to increase a moisture in the at least one ground heat exchanger.
18. The method according to claim 1 further comprising the step of:
controlling the at least one heat transfer device with at least one controller.
19. The method according to claim 18 wherein the at least one controller is a microprocessor controller.
20. The method according to claim 19 wherein the microprocessor controller is selected from the group consisting of a microprocessor controller integral to the heat transfer device, a microprocessor controller with a self-contained algorithm, a microprocessor controller operated through a user interface, a software algorithm, and a cloud-based algorithm.
21. The method according to claim 19 further comprising the steps of:
configuring at least one sensor in signal communication with the microprocessor controller and at least one moisture control valve in fluid connection with a moisture source; and
controlling the at least one moisture control valve to open and to close to increase a moisture in the at least one ground heat exchanger, wherein the at least one moisture control valve controlled to open and to close is based on at least one control signal received from the microprocessor controller.
22. The method according to claim 21 wherein the at least one sensor is selected from the group consisting of temperature and moisture sensors within the at least one ground heat exchanger, a temperature sensor within the at least one ground heat exchanger, a moisture sensor within the at least one ground heat exchanger, and an entering temperature sensor into the at least one heat transfer device.
23. The method according to claim 19 further comprising the step of:
sending by the microprocessor controller a control signal to the at least one heat transfer device causing the at least one heat transfer device to circulate the first heat transfer fluid to the at least one heat exchanger at a flow rate calculated by the microprocessor controller.
24. The method according to claim 23 further comprising the step of:
sending by the microprocessor controller, using an open loop control means based on an optimized system model, the flow rate to the at least one heat transfer device.
25. The method according to claim 23 further comprising the step of:
sending by the microprocessor controller, using a closed loop control means in which the result of an input is fed back to the microprocessor controller as an input for a system model optimization, the flow rate to the at least one heat transfer device.
26. The method according to claim 23 further comprising the step of:
calculating the flow rate by the microprocessor controller using at least one of:
an entering water temperature into the at least one heat exchanger,
a leaving water temperature from the at least one heat exchanger,
a change in a temperature between the entering water temperature and the leaving water temperature passing through the at least one heat exchanger,
at least one weather datum,
at least one climate datum,
a heating load, and
a cooling load.
27. The method according to claim 19 further comprising the step of:
enabling a communication between the microprocessor controller and at least one device selected from the group consisting of a communications module, a user interface, an weather climate external device communicating weather data, an weather climate external device communicating climate data, a heat cool communications device communicating a heating load, and a heat cool communications device communicating a cooling load.
28. The method according to claim 19 wherein the microprocessor controller is a component of an at least one client-server architecture.
29. The method according to claim 28 wherein the at least one client-server architecture is selected from the group consisting of BACnet, Modbus, LonWorks, a wireless client-server architecture, a client-server architecture using a user interface, a client-server architecture using a web browser, a client-server architecture using a web server, a client-server architecture using a cloud-based server, a client-server architecture of a remote building controls system, and a client-server architecture controlling a plurality of microprocessor controllers.
30. The method according to claim 1 further comprising the steps of:
configuring a thermally conductive stratum between the thermally resistive stratum and the at least one ground heat exchanger with the thermally conductive stratum in thermal contact with the at least one ground heat exchanger.
31. The method according to claim 30 wherein the thermally conductive stratum is selected from the group consisting of a thermally conductive stratum with a phase change material and a thermally conductive stratum with a phase change material in a moisture impermeable enclosure.
32. The method according to claim 31 wherein the phase change material is selected from the group consisting of bee's wax, paraffin, crystalline paraffin, salt hydrates, crystalline polymers, naphthalene, glycol mixture, stable nanofluid, paraffin-based nanofluid, and paraffin-aluminum nanofluid.
33. The method according to claim 30 further comprising the steps of:
configuring the thermally conductive stratum with a second heat exchanger; and circulating a second heat transfer fluid between the second heat exchanger and a third heat exchanger with a second heat transfer device in fluid connection with the second heat exchanger and the third heat exchanger.
34. The method according to claim 33 wherein the third heat exchanger is selected from the group consisting of a hydronic heat exchanger, a refrigerant heat exchanger, a solar thermal heat exchanger, a thermally active building structure, a snow melt heat exchanger, a process heat exchanger, a water-to-air heat exchanger, a thermal storage device, a boiler, a chiller, a cooling tower, a combined heat and power unit, an air conditioner, an absorption chiller, a direct exchange ground source heat pump, an air source heat pump, a water-to-water ground source heat pump, a water-to-air ground source heat pump, and a dual source heat pump.
35. The method according to claim 33 wherein the second heat exchanger and third heat exchanger are selected from the group consisting of a hydronic heat exchanger, and a refrigerant heat exchanger.
36. The method according to claim 33 wherein the second heat transfer fluid circulating between the second heat exchanger and the third heat exchanger is selected from the group consisting of water, deionized water, glycol/water solution, dielectric fluids, polyalphaolefin, fluorocarbons, antifreeze mixture, ethylene glycol, propylene glycol, methanol, ethanol, brine, and nanofluid, and a refrigerant.
37. The method according to claim 33 wherein the second heat transfer device is selected from the group consisting of a single speed pump, a multi-speed pump, a variable speed pump, a single speed compressor, a multi-speed compressor, and a variable speed compressor.
38. The method according to claim 33 further comprising the steps of:
configuring at least one temperature sensor in thermal connection with the second heat transfer fluid and in signal communication with a microprocessor controller; and
sending by the microprocessor controller at least one control signal to the second heat transfer device causing the second heat transfer device to circulate the second heat transfer fluid to the third heat exchanger at a flow rate calculated by the microprocessor controller.
39. The method according to claim 1 further comprising the steps of:
configuring an electrically conductive stratum in contact with the first earthen stratum;
bonding the electrically conductive stratum to at least one electrical conductor means; and
bonding the electrical conductor means to at least one building electrode.
40. The method according to claim 39 wherein the electrically conductive stratum is selected from the group consisting of a cathode material, an anode material in electrical circuit connection to an impressed current, and an anode material in electrical circuit connection to an impressed current generated by a solar photovoltaic array.
41. A method for controlling a temperature of a heat transfer fluid entering into an at least one second heat exchanger, the method comprising the steps of:
(a) configuring an at least one first heat exchanger in thermal connection with and in between a phase change material stratum and a thermally resistive stratum;
(b) configuring a heat transfer device to circulate the heat transfer fluid in the at least one first heat exchanger and in fluid connection to the at least one second heat exchanger; and
(c) configuring an at least one temperature sensor in thermal connection with the heat transfer fluid and in signal communication with a microprocessor controller which sends at least one control signal to the heat transfer device to circulate the heat transfer fluid into the at least one first heat exchanger fluidly connected to the at least one second heat exchanger at a flow rate calculated by the microprocessor controller.
42. The method according to claim 41 further comprising the steps of:
configuring the at least one first heat exchanger as a solar thermal heat exchanger;
configuring the heat transfer fluid as a direct absorption nanofluid;
configuring the at least one heat exchanger in step (b) to contain the heat transfer fluid in an enclosed volume without internal piping attached to a thermal collector; and
configuring a fluid connection between the heat transfer device in step (c) and the heat transfer fluid within the enclosed volume of the at least one first heat exchanger.
43. The method according to claim 41 wherein the phase change material stratum is selected from the group consisting of bee's wax, paraffin, crystalline paraffin, salt hydrates, crystalline polymers, naphthalene, glycol mixture, stable nanofluid, paraffin-based nanofluid, and paraffin-aluminum nanofluid.
44. The method according to claim 41 wherein the at least one first heat exchanger is selected from the group consisting of a hydronic heat exchanger, a refrigerant heat exchanger, a solar thermal heat exchanger, a thermally active building structure, a snow melt heat exchanger, a process heat exchanger, a water-to-air heat exchanger, a thermal storage device, and a cooling tower.
45. The method according to claim 41 wherein the at least one second heat exchanger is selected from the group consisting of a hydronic heat exchanger, a refrigerant heat exchanger, a solar thermal heat exchanger, a ground heat exchanger, a thermally active building structure, a snow melt heat exchanger, a process heat exchanger, a water-to-air heat exchanger, a thermal storage device, a boiler, a chiller, a cooling tower, a combined heat and power unit, an air conditioner, an absorption chiller, a direct exchange ground source heat pump, an air source heat pump, a water-to-water ground source heat pump, a water-to-air ground source heat pump, and a dual source heat pump.
46. The method according to claim 41 wherein the heat transfer device is selected from the group consisting of a single speed pump, a multi-speed pump, a variable speed pump, a single speed compressor, a multi-speed compressor, and a variable speed compressor.
47. The method according to claim 41 wherein the heat transfer fluid is selected from the group consisting of refrigerant, water, deionized water, glycol/water solution, dielectric fluids, polyalphaolefin, fluorocarbons, antifreeze mixture, ethylene glycol, propylene glycol, methanol, ethanol, brine, and nanofluid.
48. The method according to claim 41 wherein the microprocessor controller is selected from the group consisting of a microprocessor controller integral to the heat transfer device, a microprocessor controller with a self-contained algorithm, a microprocessor controller operated through a user interface, a software algorithm, and a cloud-based algorithm.
49. The method according to claim 41 wherein the at least one first heat exchanger is selected from the group consisting of a heat exchanger configured with internal piping containing the heat transfer fluid attached to a thermal collector and configured in a serpentine pattern, and a heat exchanger configured with internal piping containing the heat transfer fluid attached to a thermal collector and configured in a serpentine pattern.
50. A method for preventing corrosion of a ground heat exchanger and a building structure, the method comprising the steps of:
(a) configuring an electrically conductive stratum in contact with a first earthen stratum;
(b) configuring a ground heat exchanger in thermal contact with the first earthen stratum;
(c) configuring an electrical circuit connection between the electrically conductive stratum and at least one electrical conductor;
(d) configuring an electrical circuit connection between the electrical conductor and at least one of:
(i) at least one electrode in the building structure,
(ii) the ground heat exchanger, and
(iii) the at least one electrode in the building structure and the ground heat exchanger; and
(e) configuring the ground heat exchanger in contact with a second earthen stratum.
51. The method according to claim 50 wherein the electrically conductive stratum is selected from the group consisting of a cathode material, an anode material in electrical circuit connection to an impressed current, and an anode material in electrical circuit connection to an impressed current generated by a solar photovoltaic array.
52. The method according to claim 50 wherein configuring step (d) further comprises the step of:
bonding the electrical conductor to at least one of:
at least one electrode in the building structure,
the ground heat exchanger, and
the at least one electrode in the building structure and the ground heat exchanger.
53. The method according to claim 50 wherein the electrically conductive stratum is selected from the group consisting of a cathode material, an anode material in electrical circuit connection to an impressed current, and an anode material in electrical circuit connection to an impressed current generated by a solar photovoltaic array.
54. The method according to claim 50 further comprising the step of:
augmenting the first earthen stratum with at least one additive material improving the electrical conductivity of the first earthen stratum.
55. The method according to claim 54 wherein the at least one additive material is selected from the group consisting of tire steel cord, metal shavings, graphite, glass, sand, mineral, salt, clay, moisture retention material, and electrolyte.
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