Materials & Technology

Philadelphia facility heated with geothermal system

Fri, 04/13/2012 - 08:36

Google recently announced how it uses recycled wastewater to cool the servers at its Georgia data center, but a company in Philadelphia is now going to be using runoff and discharge to heat a building, The Verge reported.

According to the news outlet, an energy company in the largest city in Pennsylvania has installed a wastewater geothermal energy system, as it will provide a heating system in the basement of the Southeast Water Pollution Control Facility in Philadelphia with energy.
This will mark the first time that wastewater has been used to provide heat to a building in the U.S.

The 1 million British Thermal Units (BTU) per hour geothermal unit uses a water source heat pump, outfitted with a filtration device, to transfer heat directly from an adjacent sewage channel and turn it into electricity, providing heat for the building at an estimated cost savings of 50 percent.

The technology has proven effective in its implementation at several sites in China, and this type of recycling of energy and water could help to make a significant impact on future green projects in the U.S.

However, certain heating systems may improve upon the efficiency of the geothermal energy pump system.

For example, a Warmboard radiant heating system helps to maximize on the efficiency of green energy generation setups, as the product deliver heat with the lowest level of energy expenditure on the market.

The highly-conductive aluminum tubing that is used in the Warmboard radiant heating system helps the system deliver heat in a more efficient manner, as the water temperature does not have to be at as high of a level as other radiant systems.