The Geothermal Association of Ireland has announced the winners of this year’s Brecan Mooney Installation of the Year Awards.
Wicklow-based Brendan Robinson was presented with the Installation of the Year Award in the Domestic Category for his installation of a geothermal heating system in his home in Blackrock, Blessington, Co Wicklow. Meanwhile, Neil McDaid and Noel McGonigle from Daigon received the award in the Non-Domestic Category for their installation of a geothermal heating system in Kelly’s Toyota Showroom in Mountcharles, Co Donegal. The winners were announced at the SEAI Energy Show in the RDS, Dublin on Thursday, 7thApril.
Geothermal is a renewable form of energy that uses heat stored in the ground to heat or to cool buildings and can even be used to generate power. It has an energy efficiency rating higher than any other renewable, is available 24/7, and is not weather dependent. The Brecan Mooney competition is aimed at promoting best-practice and excellence in the installation and operation of these systems. Finalists have to show how ground source systems have significantly contributed to reducing running costs and the carbon footprint of the locations where they are installed.
Chairman of the Geothermal Association of Ireland, Ric Pasquali commented: “Geothermal is one of Ireland’s hidden assets when it comes to heating or cooling our homes and businesses. Ireland has an excellent source of shallow geothermal energy, which, coupled with heat pump technology, can be used for heating, cooling and hot water. It is also cost efficient and is the only renewable energy source that is available 24/7.
“Recent research from the SEAI has shown that the number of homes and businesses in Ireland availing of renewable heat technologies needs to increase if Ireland is to reach its target of 12% of renewable heat by 2020. Therefore, it is fantastic to get the positive feedback of sustainable and cost efficient homes from those who commissioned geothermal systems. This year’s winners, Brendan Robinson and Daigon, have really lived up to the spirit of the competition, demonstrating how these geothermal installations have significantly contributed to reducing running costs for their owners, as well as the carbon footprint of the buildings.”
Runners-up this year in the Domestic Category were: Brian Cooley of Climate Control, Tuam for an installation at a family home in Streamstown, Mullingar, Co Westmeath; Neil McDaid and Noel McGonigle of Daigon for an installation at a family home in in Dunlewey, Co Donegal; and Gerard Duffy of Eurotech Renewables for an installation at a family home in Tullow, Co Carlow. The runner-up in the Non-Domestic Category was Gerard Duffy of Eurotech Renewables for the Lisdoonan Community Residential Scheme, Carrickmacross, Co Monaghan.
Details of the winners are below:
Domestic Winner: Brendan Robinson of Blackrock, Blessington, Co Wicklow, installer of geothermal heating systems in his own home.
The geothermal heating system (installed in November 2013), demonstrates innovative application of heat pump technologies to the extraction of heat from the residence’s well water supply. Variable speed controls of the well pump provide sufficiently heated water at pressure during the day to meet washing and food preparation needs. At night, the pump speed ramps down to maintain a low pressure, low flow supply to transfer waste cooling energy away from the heat pump. The system replaced an oil boiler in the home, saving approximately €1,000 every year in energy costs, as well as lowering the amount of CO2 emissions by 2.8 tonnes. Payback on the investment is expected to be achieved in 2019.
Non-Domestic Winner: Neil McDaid and Noel McGonigle of Daigon, installers for Kelly’s Toyota Showroom in Mountcharles, Co Donegal.
The geothermal system installed by Daigon is used for both heating and cooling. In heating mode, a heat pump is used to provide warm water to underfloor heating at 45°C flow / 35°C return water temperatures. In cooling mode, the ground loop circuit takes heat from a heat exchanger to provide indirect cooling of the showrooms through a cooled floor. Energy offset from direct air-conditioning, standard in car showrooms, is a significant contributor to what is a low energy, low cost facility. A saving of €6,000 a year on heating costs alone is expected to result in payback in nine years.