The Brugeo project receives ERDF funding from the Brussels-Capital region and the European Union. The project's goal is to promote geothermics in the Brussels area, especially shallow geothermal installations with a heat pump. Mapping the geothermal potential of Brussels will make it easier to switch to this clean and renewable source of energy.
With the public becoming increasingly aware of climate change, and with fossil energy sources running out, renewable energies are in full boom. Geothermics is among these new sources of energy, and it is both emissions-free and inexhaustible. However, in the Brussels area, installing new geothermal systems can be more difficult, among other things, by a lack of accurate data on the ground below the city; this means systems cannot be properly sized and/or that cost-benefit analyses cannot be carried out before investing in projects on a larger scale.
In this context, the Brugeo project aims at promoting the geothermal potential of the Brussels-Capital region. This four-year project (2016-2020) receives funding from the Brussels-Capital region and the European Union as part of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
Given Brussels' geological and urban situation, the project focuses on shallow geothermics (up to ~250 metres), especially closed systems (where heat is exchanged between the ground and a heat transfer fluid running through a vertical loop) and open systems (where warm water is collected from aquifers), coupled with a geothermal heat pump on the surface.
Concrete actions promoting the geothermal potential of the Brussels-Capital region include:
- pooling data from various partners on the ground below Brussels, which will provide comprehensive geological, hydrogeological, and thermal data;
- conducting new laboratory and field tests in order to complete geological analyses in less-explored areas that could have an attractive geothermal potential;
- mapping the geothermal potential of the Brussels area in order to evaluate the amount of energy that can be provided by or stored into the ground in any given place, depending on drilling depth and the geothermal system chosen;
- creating and developing a website dedicated to the promotion of geothermal energy in Brussels;
- organising a number of awareness-raising events for citizens, industry professionals (architects, engineering firms, drillers, installers), and officials.
This project involves major players in the Brussels geothermal sector, i.e. ULB (‘BATir’ department), VUB (Department of Hydrology and Hydraulic Engineering), the Geological Survey of Belgium, Environment Brussels, and the Belgian Building Research Institute (BBRI).