Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Science




Robert A Schincariol


Geothermal energy has greatly increased in prevalence over the last 20 years. With many new installations, the desire to introduce geothermal energy into unused urban environments has increased. However the urban environment has a great effect on the subsurface thermal profile, which may significantly influence geothermal systems. To test the effectiveness and efficiency of different geothermal systems in tight building clusters, as well as the effects of the system on the subsurface, a three dimensional finite element model was developed. The model is based on an area of University of Western Ontario campus that has a geothermal system utilizing borehole heat exchangers. FEFLOW, a groundwater and heat flow modeling program was used to simulate the area and a geothermal system. It was found that geo-exchange systems on average retain 95% efficiency over time, but did also reshape the subsurface thermal profile.