In Iceland there is a super abundance of waste hot water from geothermal power plants. Some of this is re-purposed (sequentially used) for district heating and heated swimming pools. This vast underused energy source can also enable the growth of out of zone plants, enhance agricultural production by 20% and extend the growing season. The authors have developed and field tested an energy intensive shallow system of bottom heat using the existing heated sidewalk materials. Tomatoes that do not survive outdoors in Iceland have produced ripe fruit. A zucchinis harvest was documented and the test banana plant was still alive in September after the first frost. These plants all died in the control garden which had the same piping system, and identical soil types and depths. Heat transfer data, infrared analysis and plant growth data were gathered to preliminarily document and quantify the system’s viability and market potentials.
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Waste Geothermal Hot Water for Enhanced Outdoor Agricultural Production
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Dell, R, Unnthorsson, R, Wei, CS, & Foley, W. "Waste Geothermal Hot Water for Enhanced Outdoor Agricultural Production." Proceedings of the ASME 2013 Power Conference. Volume 2: Reliability, Availability and Maintainability (RAM); Plant Systems, Structures, Components and Materials Issues; Simple and Combined Cycles; Advanced Energy Systems and Renewables (Wind, Solar and Geothermal); Energy Water Nexus; Thermal Hydraulics and CFD; Nuclear Plant Design, Licensing and Construction; Performance Testing and Performance Test Codes. Boston, Massachusetts, USA. July 29–August 1, 2013. V002T09A013. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/POWER2013-98172
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