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Geothermal Heating & Cooling 
The system used to heat and cool the Madison Lakes Conference and Learning Center is an electric air-source heat pump heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system (HVAC).  However, a new electric ground-source geothermal HVAC system is presently being installed that is expected to be operational by the end of summer 2011.  Geothermal systems utilize the thermal storage capacity of the earth to provide heating and cooling much more efficiently than typical heating and cooling equipment.  This geothermal system at Madison Lakes Learning and Conference Center consists of five ground source heat pumps, eight 300 feet deep wells, one circulating pump, piping, and related HVAC equipment to provide heating and cooling to the Conference Center.


geothermalUsing the Ground to Provide Heating & Cooling
Heat pumps function much like a typical air conditioner, they compress a refrigerant to provide both heating and cooling effects.  Unlike typical air conditioning equipment, a heat pump can provide both cooling and heating to the building by switching how the refrigerant flows in the system (typical AC systems only reject heat to the out door air).  In the summer the ground source heat pump system rejects heat from the compressed refrigerant to the ground and provides cooling to the building.  In the winter the heat pump simply rejects heat into the building instead!  What makes the system far more efficient than even air-source heat pumps is that this system uses the temperature of the ground, not the air, to function.  During the summer air temperatures in Dayton can easily reach into the low 90's.  Deep underground, however, Dayton's ground temperature is much closer to 55 degrees.  A similar situation occurs during the winter, air temperatures are very cold but deep underground the temperature is much warmer.  This allows the heat pump system to work far more efficiently than air source heating and cooling equipment.