University of Illinois set to install new geothermal system

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) — The University of Illinois is embedding a new geothermal heating and cooling system within the foundation of a building addition on its engineering campus as part of an effort to decrease greenhouse gas emissions.

The News-Gazette reports that the project will install geothermal heat exchanger loops in the foundation of a novel “smart” pedestrian bridge. The bridge will link the 13,000-square-foot Hydrosystems Laboratory extension to the Newmark Civil Engineering Laboratory.

Officials say that by using the 50-foot-deep rods currently being drilled for the foundation, the project will reduce general geothermal installation expenses in addition to providing for on-site research.

UI Facilities and Services director Mohamed Attalla says the new installation method costs around $240,000, which is around 30-40% cheaper than drilling holes for a long-established geothermal “field system.”

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Information from: The News-Gazette, http://www.news-gazette.com

Associated Press

Associated Press

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