Semi-Passive cooling?
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    Jim Timber's Avatar
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    Semi-Passive cooling?

    As I creep closer to groundbreaking on my new shop, I keep contemplating alternative energy strategies.

    I'm actually wondering about using ground water to augment my air conditioning via forced air radiators fed via my well pump. Or maybe just one radiator added into the furnace air handler stack.

    Thoughts?
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    arlen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Timber View Post
    As I creep closer to groundbreaking on my new shop, I keep contemplating alternative energy strategies.

    I'm actually wondering about using ground water to augment my air conditioning via forced air radiators fed via my well pump. Or maybe just one radiator added into the furnace air handler stack.

    Thoughts?

    It is an expensive, wasteful way to cool, but it would work. The VA hospital in Minneapolis used to cool that way back in the day. That was when water was free.
    How many GPM is your pump? if you figure your well water is 50 deg going into the coil and say 55 going out (if your lucky), you will find that you need to pump allot of water to get significant BTU's.
    If you have a purpose for the water, then it would make sense to get something out of it.
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    Jim Timber's Avatar
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    I don't have the pump yet.
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    Since you will have a small temperature differential,, you will need an enormous radiator surface area,,,

    IMHO,, to start,, you will need a half dozen 600 HP truck radiators,,,

    Less than that, you will not notice any effect,,,

    The other negative is that this water cooling system will remove VERY little moisture from the air,,

    lower humidity is what really makes you feel comfortable,,,
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    Jim Timber's Avatar
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    Radiators are cheap.

    I'll be doing something for dehumidification as well. In fact, using well water to condense the humidity might just be the way to go.
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    Water cooled AC

    Quote Originally Posted by arlen View Post
    It is an expensive, wasteful way to cool, but it would work. The VA hospital in Minneapolis used to cool that way back in the day. That was when water was free.
    How many GPM is your pump? if you figure your well water is 50 deg going into the coil and say 55 going out (if your lucky), you will find that you need to pump allot of water to get significant BTU's.
    If you have a purpose for the water, then it would make sense to get something out of it.
    There are a number of AC units that both cool the air and heat water. Some dairy farms use those as they need a lot of hot water. The cool water first goes through a heat exchanger to cool the Freon. If you have a need for hot water, it's a pretty efficient way to cool air and warm water.

    Treefarmer
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    Jim Timber's Avatar
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    I guess I just see it as "almost free" BTUs.

    Say the water comes out at 45° and we heat/cool to 70°. That's only a 25° delta on either end of the spectrum if I can harvest/dump the heat.

    In January, when ambient is too cold for a heat pump by -20°f, bringing in 45° water is a big improvement. Might not seem like much, but I only "heat" the shop to 55° when I'm not working.
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    arlen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Treefarmer View Post
    There are a number of AC units that both cool the air and heat water. Some dairy farms use those as they need a lot of hot water. The cool water first goes through a heat exchanger to cool the Freon. If you have a need for hot water, it's a pretty efficient way to cool air and warm water.

    Treefarmer
    Your talking about a water cooled compressor...Jim is talking about single pass direct cooling with well water.
    What your talking about is very common these days and works great when you can use the hot water.
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    arlen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Timber View Post
    I guess I just see it as "almost free" BTUs.

    Say the water comes out at 45° and we heat/cool to 70°. That's only a 25° delta on either end of the spectrum if I can harvest/dump the heat.

    In January, when ambient is too cold for a heat pump by -20°f, bringing in 45° water is a big improvement. Might not seem like much, but I only "heat" the shop to 55° when I'm not working.
    Why not get a water cooled heat pump?
    I wouldn’t want to waste that much well water though. If you were irrigating or something like that, it makes sense to reject some heat into it, but pumping water just for single pass cooling is not economically feasible.
    Have you priced a well lately?

    I should do something with my spring... it spews 60gpm of ice cold water 24/7 and it just runs into the creek
    Last edited by arlen; 07-18-2019 at 10:40 PM.
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    Jim Timber's Avatar
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    Who said anything about single pass?

    I've got (2) 22x40' walls I could line with pipes.

    But what makes more sense is some kind of ducted fan which circulates indoor air through a core. I'll have (3) 8x4x40' cavities between upper/lower containers that could easily be outfitted to such a beast.
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