The influence of the thermosiphon effect on the thermal response test

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The issue of natural and forced groundwater movements, and its effect on the performance of ground heat exchangers is of great importance for the design and sizing of borehole thermal energy systems (BTESs). In Scandinavia groundwater filled boreholes in hard rock are commonly used. In such boreholes one or more intersecting fractures provide a path for groundwater flow between the borehole and the surrounding rock. An enhanced heat transport then occurs due to the induced convective water flow, driven by the volumetric expansion of heated water. Warm groundwater leaves through fractures in the upper part of the borehole while groundwater of ambient temperature enters the borehole through fractures at larger depths. This temperature driven flow is referred to as thermosiphon, and may cause considerable increase in the heat transport from groundwater filled boreholes. The thermosiphon effect is connected to thermal response tests, where the effective ground thermal conductivity is enhanced by this convective transport. Strong thermosiphon effects have frequently been observed in field measurements. The character of this effect is similar to that of artesian flow through boreholes. (C) 2003 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.


  • S E A Gehlin
  • Göran Hellström
  • B Nordell
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Sidor (från-till)2239-2254
TidskriftRenewable Energy
Utgåva nummer14
StatusPublished - 2003
Peer review utfördJa