BY AVRIL NÍ SHEARCAIGH
The Aran Islands pilot site in this project is located on Árainn, the largest of the three Aran Islands on the west coast of Ireland. This pilot’s focus is based on residential buildings. The Killeaney Cottages, pictured below, were selected and invited to participate. Eight of the households here are interested in taking part in GEOFIT and having their current heating system replaced by a Geothermal heat pump.
In late January a site visit was carried out at the pilot site followed by a workshop where all local stakeholders were invited to take part. Project partners and drilling experts were also in attendance, as well as members of CFOAT, the pilot site managers. During the site visit, experts surveyed the current status of each dwellings current heating needs and their existing system. Each house was also examined in terms of suitability to the project. The fabric of the house and current heating demand are just some of the factors considered. The workshop which followed this turned out to be a very valuable event, where different scenarios and solutions were played out and discussed. Planning is now underway regarding the best Geothermal solution for this pilot site, and the most suitable dwellings are being selected our research.