Hybrid Geothermal Heat Pump Systems

No matter where you live, the underground temperature remains relatively constant all year, even though outdoor temperatures may vary widely. Geothermal systems utilize this stable resource as a renewable energy source for your home.

GroundHog TechnologyYes it’s finally here. The heat pump that addresses all your fears about ground source and air source heat pumps. The GroundhogTM is our patented hybrid geothermal heat pump that combines air source and ground technology to produce a superior geothermal/air source combination heat pump system.  

What is a Hybrid Geothermal Heat Pump System?

Hybrid geothermal heat pump systems offer many of the benefits of full geothermal systems but at lower installed costs. A hybrid geothermal system combines elements of a conventional water loop heat pump system in order to reduce the geothermal loop heat exchanger costs, which are probably the largest cost element of a geothermal system. Hybrid systems can be  been used successfully where sufficient ground space to install large heat exchangers for full geothermal options are unavailable

These hybrid systems provide more energy-efficient heating than air source heat pumps because of the warmer source water temperature as compared to ambient air. In addition, hybrid systems do not create sharp winter peak demand on the electric power system as compared to air source heat pumps, and they provide both winter heating and summer cooling that improve utility load factors.

Also, hybrid systems can significantly cut down the initial cost of a full geothermal loop—the largest cost element of a geothermal system—sometimes by 50% or more.

What are the advantages of a hybrid geothermal heat pump system?

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  • Greater efficiency. Air source heat pumps are often more efficient in less extreme weather. The endless supply of free flowing outdoor air can provide a great source of convection for longer run times without the thermal depletion of the earth field that can occur with geothermal units. Ground source systems are often more efficient in extreme weather conditions. The constant and more stable ground temperatures can provide an efficient source of convection as long as the earth field is not over worked. The ability to utilize both sources gives the Groundhog a unique advantage to achieve comfort and efficiency.
  • Lower installation cost = Lower geothermal heat pump cost. The Groundhog’s multisource technology requires less drilling to obtain the same BTUH as conventional geothermal systems.
  • Faster installation time. Less drilling is less time consuming, and better still, the Groundhog can function without being attached to the earth field which is ideal when a nonfunctioning system needs to be replaced quickly. The earth field can be installed at a later date, and the homeowner can start enjoying the comfort as quickly as with a typical air source system installation.
  • Less threat of a total system failure. In the rare event of a ground loop failure, the Groundhog can still produce adequate heating and cooling.
  • More efficient dehumidification. The Groundhog system uses a multi-speed compressor, as well as a variable speed fan motor to remove more unwanted humidity in the cooling mode.
  • Better balanced heat control. The Groundhog air handler is equipped with MaximizerTM technology which measures the temperature rise at the indoor coil. This allows the system to determine the correct compressor and heat stage mode for the best balance of comfort and efficiency.

Atlas Offers Affordable Direct Exchange (DX) Geothermal Solutions

Geothermal Heat Pumps = Lower Energy Bill

Air Source / Ground Source Heat Pump

A direct exchange (DX) geothermal heat pump system is a geothermal heat pump system in which the refrigerant circulates through copper tubing placed in the ground. The refrigerant exchanges heat directly with the soil through the walls of the copper tubing. This eliminates the plastic water pipe and water pump to circulate water found in a water-source geothermal heat pump. This simplicity allows the system to reach high efficiencies while using a relatively shorter and smaller set of buried tubing, reducing installation cost. DX systems, like water-source systems, can also be used to heat water in the house for use in radiant heating applications and for domestic hot water, as well as for cooling applications.

Because of their small earth loop size, DX systems can be installed in relatively small areas and in relatively shallow soil. This provides a flexibility of installation that is useful in allowing many properties to be served by geothermal that could not be served otherwise. A direct exchange system ground loop can be drilled with a small drill rig that can fit into small side yards and gardens under existing trees. It can be drilled in areas where rock is found 50 foot (15 m) to 100 foot (30 m) below ground without the need for actually drilling into rock.

We also have geothermal water heating options! 

No matter where you live, the underground temperature remains relatively constant all year, even though outdoor temperatures may vary widely. Geothermal systems utilize this stable resource as a renewable energy source for your home.

Geothermal Installation Options Illustration

Geothermal Installation Options Illustration