European Project GEO4CIVHIC - Most Easy, Efficient and Low Cost Geothermal Systems for Retrofitting Civil and Historical Buildings

Conference contribution
(Abstract of lecture)

Publication Details

Author(s): Bertermann D, Bernardi A, Galgaro A, de Carli M, Urchueguía J, Mezzasalma G, Pasquali R, Poletto F, Noyé S, Ulrich D, Poletto D, Gavriliuc R, Karytsas C, Mendrinos D, Righini D, Mands E, Vercruysse J, Rossi L, Belliardi M, Vavallo M, Mulè Stagno L, Müller J
Publication year: 2019


The building retrofit market today barely
reaches 1 % of the actual building stock. In addition, the interventions
are of shallow nature in the majority of the buildings. The energy
transition initiative of the European Commission is focusing on
increasing the retrofitting of the building stock from the current 1 %
level to 3 % and to shift the nature of the interventions towards deep
retrofits. The GEO4CIVHIC project ( is one
further step of many in research and innovation to increase shallow
geothermal applications in buildings. The revision and implementation
into legislation of the EPBD, the Energy Efficiency Directive and the
Renewable Energy Directive by the EC, coupled with financial support
mechanisms (e.g. tax reductions for deep retrofits, premiums for
renewable energy systems) will contribute as well.

The GEO4CIVHIC activities are organized in
three groups named blocks. The first group (technical block) deals with
the technical innovations and solutions to be realized and demonstrated
starting from the state of art and the specific needs of building
retrofits. The high drilling cost needs to be tackled. Drilling with
highly efficient but heavy and large drilling machines is difficult and
often impossible in the built urban environment. The use of smaller,
less powerful machines leads to even higher drilling costs. Hence
increasing the thermal efficiency of the Ground Source Heat Exchangers
(GSHEs) is another way to reduce the total length (and therefore the
costs) of GSHE system to be installed. Innovations are introduced in
each component: Drilling Machines and Methodology, GSHE design and
materials, compact and hybrid heat pumps (HPs) for high and low
temperature terminals. Development of the heat pumps should also
contribute to the decrease of the total investment or the increase of
the overall efficiency. Heat pumps with good performance at higher
temperatures avoid the need to replace all or parts of the heating
terminals. A Decision Support System (DSS) will deliver the most
suitable technical solution for each facility and a Building Management
System (BMS) will allow the use of other renewable energy sources and
optimization of the controls.

The second group (economic & market block)
addresses the introduction of these technologies to the market. The
stakeholders united in the broad consortium, including architects,
drilling machine builders, drillers, HP suppliers, engineers and
academics specialized in shallow geothermal applications, HVAC systems
and HPs will provide their expertise. The stable nature of geothermal as
a renewable energy source, the ability of heating/cooling with only one
system and the higher residual value of buildings retrofitted with this
technology are additional key factors for investors who are focusing on
the long-term value of retrofits.

The third group (environmental &
standardization block) deals with the legislative, environmental and
European standard aspects, dealing with the project innovations for
which recommendations and modifications will be developed through
experienced consortium partners being members of standards organizations
and geothermal associations.

The main goal of the GEO4CIVHIC project will
be to tackle all of the above-mentioned areas by developing and
demonstrating more easy to install and more efficient GSHEs, using
drilling machine innovations tailored for the built and also historical
environment and developing or adapting heat pumps and other hybrid
solutions for retrofits through a holistic engineering, construction and
controls approach.

FAU Authors / FAU Editors

Bertermann, David Dr.
Lehrstuhl für Geologie (Exogene Dynamik)
Müller, Johannes
Lehrstuhl für Geologie (Exogene Dynamik)

External institutions with authors

National Research Council (CNR)
Polytechnic University of Valencia / Universidad Politécnica de Valencia
Solintel M&P S. L.
Tecnalia Research & Innovation Foundation
University of Padova / Universita degli Studi di Padova
University of Padua

Research Fields

Near-surface geothermal energy
Lehrstuhl für Geologie (Exogene Dynamik)
Climate and Resources
Research focus area of a faculty: Naturwissenschaftliche Fakultät

How to cite

Bertermann, D., Bernardi, A., Galgaro, A., de Carli, M., Urchueguía, J., Mezzasalma, G.,... Müller, J. (2019, November). European Project GEO4CIVHIC - Most Easy, Efficient and Low Cost Geothermal Systems for Retrofitting Civil and Historical Buildings. Paper presentation at Der Geothermie Kongress 2019, München.

Bertermann, David, et al. "European Project GEO4CIVHIC - Most Easy, Efficient and Low Cost Geothermal Systems for Retrofitting Civil and Historical Buildings." Presented at Der Geothermie Kongress 2019, München 2019.


Last updated on 2019-26-07 at 18:38