Geothermal Segments:The Tunnel as Heat Supplier

At a time of increased mobility and also with the demand for reduction of CO2 output, regenerative energy sources are gaining significance. In addition to sun and wind, geothermal energy is also an option. Heat in the ground can be exploited by energetically activating structures in contact with the ground, e.g. tunnels. In the course of the upgrading of the railway route from Munich to Verona, a part of a tunnel in  the area of Jenbach in the Tyrol has been thermally activated in order to supply geothermal energy to the nearby utility centre.

Thanks to the logging of data from the operation of the Jenbach thermal power plant since 2012, and also from additional tests, it is now possible to make more detailed statements about the energy potential and opportunities of energetic activation. The heat, which in this case is extracted from quite a shallow depth, is used for heating and cooling purposes in buildings and transport structures with a potential extraction rate of 25–40 W/m². It has been demonstrated that the payback period is of the same order as normal geothermal plants.

1 The Jenbach Tunnel Pilot Project

Civil engineering...

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