The word "Geothermal" has been derived from the Greek origin that means "earth heat". A central heating as well as a cooling system that assists the movement of heat to or from the ground is called a geothermal or ground source heat pump. It is also popularly known by different names such as geoexchange, earth-coupled, and earth energy systems. The system mainly employs a heat exchanger in order to get in touch with the ground or groundwater for the removal or dispersion of the amount of heat.
During winters, it uses the earth as a heat source and when it is the time for summers, the earth turns a heat sink. This whole design of the system if successfully prepared can utilize the benefit of the average temperature levels in the ground to raise its effectiveness and reduce the operational costs of heating and cooling systems. The findings have proved that the underground temperature equilibrium is essential to be maintained via appropriate design of the whole system.
If the design turns out to be inappropriate, it may lead to freezing up of the system as well as to an incompetent system performance. It is said that it can also be united and merged with solar heating to build a geosolar system with enhanced efficiency. These pumps are basically a form of heating technology that can be further replenished. They have the competency to replace the traditional ways of heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems.
These pumps offer heating, cooling, and hot water to a number of buildings. Market share on the basis of types spans Direct Exchange Geothermal Heat Pump, Closed Loop Systems, and Open Loop Systems. Direct Exchange Geothermal Heat Pump is considered as the oldest kind of geothermal heat pump technology. They are quite effective in nature and have lesser installation costs when compared with closed loop systems.
The term "direct exchange" generally means to transmit the heat amid the refrigerant loop and the ground exclusive of intermediate fluid. The segment of closed loop systems usually include the setting up of ground loops, that helps in circulating a refrigerant fluid for heat transmission. They have to pass on the heat across additional coatings of pipe wall and dirt. Alternatively, open loop systems employ ground water reserves to pump water straight away into the heat pump unit for heat transfer.
The segment of closed loop systems is further segregated on the basis of loop configuration as vertical loops, horizontal loops, and pond/lake systems. Market share on the basis of Application spans Residential Use, and Commercial Use. Market share on the basis of geographical region spans North America, Asia Pacific, Europe, and Rest of the world. As far as the geography is concerned, Europe is presently leading the market share for geothermal heat pumps globally.
Other than that, North America and Asia Pacific are also emerging gradually as promising markets. The United States is mainly contributing in raising the market share of North America followed by Canada that is believed to possess huge potential for developing geothermal heating systems. Prominent companies operating in the geothermal heat pumps market share include Bosch, Trane, Bryant, Climate Master, NEURA, OCHSNER Warmepumpen, Spectrum Manufacturing, Dimplex, Carrier, and Danfoss Group.
Research Support Specialist, USA