Horizontal Directionally Drilled Ground Loop Gets Top Grades

Commercial Geothermal

London, ON

The Story:

Ameresco is a forward-thinking renewable energy developer. They design, build, and finance geothermal energy systems for commercial, government, educational, healthcare, and multi-residential facilities. In 2020, Buchanan & Hall installed a directionally drilled geothermal ground loop (or ground heat exchanger) for Ameresco at a school in London, Ontario.

Initially the ground loop was designed to be installed with vertically drilled boreholes. When Buchanan & Hall was asked to look at the project, we suggested a different approach that would reduce the capital cost of the project and lower the overall disruption to the property. The ground loop was then redesigned to be installed using horizontally drilled boreholes. Using the existing school yard, we were able to drill under the baseball diamonds without disturbing the surface. Only a relatively small area along the edge of the yard was excavated to connect the pipes together.

In the end, Ameresco was extremely happy with the work accomplished by our crew. Even with the delays experienced during the initial wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, Buchanan & Hall finished the installation well ahead of schedule.

Buchanan & Hall has been installing geothermal ground loops using our own horizontal directional drilling equipment since 2009. Over the past 12+ years, we have continued to refine our installation process and upgrade our equipment. After installing hundreds of ground loops using this method, we have an efficient process that is both tested and safe. We have installed directionally drilled ground loops for small residential projects, medium sized commercial projects, and even large-scale industrial projects.




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