Water from abandoned mines as a heat source: practical experiences of open- and closed-loop strategies, United Kingdom

David Banks, Anup Athresh, Amin Al-Habaibeh, Neil Burnside

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Pilot heat pump systems have been installed at two former collieries in Yorkshire/Derbyshire, England, to extract heat from mine water. The installations represent three fundamental configurations of heat exchanger. At Caphouse Colliery, mine water is pumped through a heat exchanger coupled to a heat pump and then discharged to waste (an open-loop heat exchange system). The system performs with high thermal efficiency, but the drawbacks are: (1) it can only be operated when mine water is being actively pumped from the colliery shaft for the purposes of regional water-level management, and (2) the fact that the water is partially oxygenated means that iron oxyhydroxide precipitation occurs, necessitating regular removal of filters for cleaning. At Markham Colliery, near Bolsover, a small amount of mine water is pumped from depth in a flooded shaft, circulated through a heat exchanger coupled to a heat pump and then returned to the same mine shaft at a slightly different depth (a standing column arrangement). This system’s fundamental thermal efficiency is negatively impacted by the electrical power required to run the shaft submersible pump, but clogging issues are not significant. In the third system, at Caphouse, a heat exchanger is submerged in a mine water treatment pond (a closed-loop system). This can be run at any time, irrespective of mine pumping regime, and being a closed-loop system, is not susceptible to clogging issues.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-50
Number of pages22
JournalSustainable Water Resources Management
Volume5
Issue number1
Early online date13 Apr 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 7 Mar 2019

Keywords

  • colliery
  • green energy
  • heat pump
  • iron
  • mine water
  • thermogeology

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