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Evaluation of Subsurface Heat Capacity through Oscillatory Thermal Response Tests.


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Giordano, Nicolo; Lamarche, Louis et Raymond, Jasmin ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7486-9185 (2021). Evaluation of Subsurface Heat Capacity through Oscillatory Thermal Response Tests. Energies , vol. 14 , nº 18. p. 5791. DOI: 10.3390/en14185791.

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Two methods are currently available to estimate in a relatively short time span the subsurface heat capacity: (1) laboratory analysis of rock/soil samples; (2) measure the heat diffusion with temperature sensors in an observation well. Since the first may not be representative of in-situ conditions, and the second imply economical and logistical issues, a third option might be possible by means of so-called oscillatory thermal response tests (OTRT). The aim of the study was to evaluate the effectiveness of an OTRT as a tool to infer the subsurface heat capacity without the need of an observation well. To achieve this goal, an OTRT was carried out in a borehole heat exchanger (BHE). The total duration of injection was 6 days, with oscillation period of 12 h and amplitude of 10 W m⁻¹. The results of the proposed methodology were compared 3-D numerical simulations and to a TRT with a constant heat injection rate with temperature response monitored from a nearby observation well. Results show that the OTRT succeeded to infer the expected subsurface heat capacity, but uncertainty is about 15% and the radial depth of penetration is only 12 cm. The parameters having most impact on the results are the subsurface thermal conductivity and the borehole thermal resistance. The OTRT performed and analyzed in this study also allowed to evaluate the thermal conductivity with similar accuracy compared to conventional TRTs (3%). On the other hand, it returned borehole thermal resistance with high uncertainty (15%), in particular due to the duration of the test. The final range of heat capacity is wide, highlighting challenges to currently use OTRT in the scope of ground-coupled heat pump system design. OTRT appears a promising tool to evaluate the heat capacity, but more field testing and mathematical interpretation of the sinusoidal response is needed to better isolate the subsurface from the BHE contribution and reduce the uncertainty.

Type de document: Article
Mots-clés libres: heat capacity; thermal conductivity; borehole thermal resistance; oscillatory thermal response test; ground-coupled heat pump; thermal energy
Centre: Centre Eau Terre Environnement
Date de dépôt: 09 févr. 2022 15:35
Dernière modification: 09 févr. 2022 15:35
URI: https://espace.inrs.ca/id/eprint/12207

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