One Great Way to Save Energy and Improve Air Quality

Categorized | Air Quality, Energy, Energy Conservation, Science

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Former Oklahoma University researcher suggests how geothermal heat pumps save energy and enhance the quality of air. Are you aware that Gerald McClain, after numerous decades working with geothermal energy pioneer James Bose at Oklahoma State College, has invented a new home geothermal cooling and heating model? 

A split-system heat pump heating cycle.

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Heat pumps work as a refrigerator in reverse; they normally use electrical power to move heat from one place to another rather than producing heat directly. Consequently, they can be two to three times more power efficient than conventional electric heating units. 

A geothermal heat pump is a central heating and/or cooling system that pumps heat to/or from the soil. It uses the ground as a heat source (in the winter) or a heat sink (in the summer). The geothermal pump models are among the most energy efficient solutions for providing HVAC (Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning) and water heating. The setup prices are higher than classic systems (close to $45,000 reduced by 30 percent with federal tax credit), but the difference is normally returned in energy savings in 3 to 10 years. 
How a Split Air Conditioning Pump Works.
 
The Gerald McClain's geothermal system is based on: 
  • 6 one inch diameter pipes sunk three hundred feet into the soft red clay below his home 
  • A water antifreeze mix in the pipes that picks up the ground's constant 62 degree F. temperature 
  • 3 heat pumps in the attic that use a small electric powered compressor to heat or cool the home 
The electricity for the pumps costs approximately $100 monthly, much less than the standard heating and cooling bill in the area. A well managed heat pump unit not only will help you save energy, but will also blow dust into the house, improving indoor air quality. Indoor dust can pose health risks, especially to young kids. New studies (As posted in the epa.gov site in Sept last year) show that indoor dust is highly contaminated by persistent and endocrine disrupting chemical compounds (such as poly-chlorinated biphenyls). 
 
Heat pumps achieve energy performance by moving heat around as opposed to liberating it. This is not to say there is no air motion with a heat pump, but the heat transfer decreases that process. So does the lack of a cold-cycle as it exists in many common heaters, which also acts to blow dust through the house. 
 
The author – Lorie Wampler contributes articles for the heat pumps ratings blog. It's a non profit web site focused on her personal experience with ac to lower energy usage and improve indoor air quality. With this she would like to increase the awareness on eco-friendly tips for the home and change the general public conception of energy efficiency.

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