Natural Systems Engineering’s Kyle Thomas discusses the performance of our recent urban retrofit geothermal project and NYSERDA’s incentives on Spectrum News’s and ESF’s “Going Green” television program.
Here in Central New York we experienced 68% of totality during the August 21, 2017 solar eclipse. There seemed to be general agreement among observers that there wasn’t a significant perceptible reduction in ambient light during the event. But check out the reduction in solar PV output during the ~1:30 to ~3:30 PM timeframe and the peak at 2:38 PM in the plot below. The reduction in output is significant, but comparable to a cloudy period based on a comparison with the cloudy afternoon of August 15 the previous week.
The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) announced on May 30 the availability of $15 million in rebates for the installation of ground source heat pump systems for residences, businesses and institutions. The announcement states that “renewable heating and cooling technologies such as ground source heat pumps not only provide environmental benefits but also provide energy bill savings, increased comfort levels and health benefits compared to conventional heating and cooling technologies.”
The amount of funding available to each project will depend on its size. Smaller projects (e.g., residential and small commercial buildings) can receive up to $15,000 when the installation is completed. A typical residential system will qualify for about $6,000. Larger projects (e.g., multi-family, hospitals and college campuses) can receive up to $500,000 per building with payments being made throughout the project. No single site can receive more than $1 million.
Rebates will be available to qualified installers for two years or until all funds have been exhausted. The total amount of the rebate will be deducted from the total cost of the system, thereby passing the savings along directly to consumers. Any ground source heat pump system for which installation was complete on or after January 1, 2017, and that meets the requirements of the program, is eligible. Only participating, qualified designers and installers may submit applications. Natural Systems Engineering is such a provider!
To discuss an application for your project, please contact:
Kyle E. Thomas, P.E.
Natural Systems Engineering, PLLC
Natural Systems Engineering’s Urban Residential Geothermal Retrofit project has been named a Top Job Finalist for the NY-GEO 2017 Conference! The conference will be held on April 19-20, 2017 at the Albany Radisson Hotel. The Top Job competition is at 1:30 PM on April 20th.
Looking forward to sharing the challenges and experiences on this job and hearing ideas from others.
The hydronic and forced air components of the ground source heat pump system at Bryant Avenue Syracuse, were completed in December 2016, thus completing the urban retrofit geothermal project. The heat pump is a 4-ton combination (water-to-air and water-to-water) unit. The forced air is given priority to bring the house to temperature. The system then switches to water to fill the buffer tank for the radiant system. Three zones of hydronic call for water from the buffer tank to heat the floors.
Given the contribution of the solar PV the first utility bill following installation shows delivery charges only! Note the drastic reduction in natural gas usage from 2016 to 2017!
Stay tuned. An analysis of the return on investment to follow on this blog.
In the late summer and early fall, the urban retrofit geothermal project located at 248 Bryant Avenue in Syracuse, New York was completed. Pipes were fused and run into the basement and pressure tested. The wells were then grouted with a flowable cementitious grout (See Photograph 1).
Following completion of the site work, the mechanical contractor, Renaissance HVAC (Verona, New York), completed the installation of the 4-ton GeoStar Cypress Combination heat pump see Photograph 2). Wells were completed by purging and filling with a 20% ethylene glycol solution for freeze protection. The combination heat pump system allows the heating of the house both with air and radiant hot water and air conditioning in the summer. The geothermal heat pump will be powered by the grid-connected 6.4 kW solar array mounted on the home’s rooftop.
Piping and the heat pump system were provided by Phoenix Energy Supply who, along with Renaissance HVAC, also provided tremendous support on this challenging project! The next steps on the path to net-zero are to connect domestic hot water to a heat pump and switchout the natural gas fueled stove and oven!
Natural Systems Engineering’s urban retrofit geothermal project was featured on YNN’s “Going Green” program on May 16, 2016. Ground source heat pumps will be powered by existing roof top solar panels. Check back for follow up story later this year.
Drilling was completed on May 12, 2016 for an urban retrofit geothermal system being installed at 248 Bryant Avenue in Syracuse, New York. Two vertical closed loops of 300 ft each were set in two wells and will serve the 4-ton combination heat pump system yet to be installed. Drilling was initiated using an air rotary rig, but was switched to a cable tool rig on the second hole when water was pushed back through the first hole through a void in the bedrock geology. Water was encountered in each hole, but was contained on-site. Saline groundwater was a concern, but wasn’t encountered until ~280 ft depth. System design by Natural Systems Engineering. Drilling performed by Caster Well Drilling and Water Conditioning (Fulton, New York).
The August 29th edition of Short Enterprises‘ “Startup Insider” features Natural Systems Engineering. The article discusses NSE’s contribution to the cleanup of Onondaga Lake through our green infrastructure projects and also presents our work in renewable energy. NSE’s designs of green roof, bioretention areas, porous pavements, stormwater infiltration planters (see photograph), green roofs, and rainwater harvesting systems are featured. NSE’s design of a geothermal heating and cooling system for an urban dwelling is also highlighted.
On April 22, Syracuse’s Post-Standard published an Op-Ed by NSE’s Principal advocating for Citizens’ Climate Lobby’s carbon tax proposal as a solution to climate change.