Welcome - Details to Make Sure This is a Great Experience
Enrolling in this course gives you immediate access to the online course materials. We will also put a welcome packet in the mail that includes a full set of IGSHPA manuals, a DVD, and additional research volumes. On the day your course begins, a live human being will give you a welcome call to make sure you get the most out of the class. After the course ends, we’ll provide detailed instructions for applying to sit for the CGD Exam.
Important Paperwork & Logistics - Start Thinking About the CGD Application
Our goal for this class is for you to earn your Certified GeoExchange Designer Certification. Most of our time will be spent teaching you what you need to know to pass the exam. But getting the paperwork and application process figured out is almost as important. Let's take a moment before we start to make sure you get that right. One of two things will happen after you pass the exam: 1) If you get approved by AEE, then you'll be a CGD, or 2) If you need more experience, you'll be a CGD-in-training. So the important takeaway is that you can do the application in parallel - no need to wait before studying and taking the test.
Week 1 - Introduction to Ground Source Heat Pump (GSHP) Systems
Geothermal Systems are relatively simple to design, but smart and experienced engineers need to understand a few key concepts before they jump into it. This week’s discussion lays the groundwork for a smooth transition into the geothermal industry. Topics covered include: CGD overview, review of GSHP concepts, components & operation, configuration options, advantages & disadvantages.
Week 2 - Building understanding, pre-modeling, and performing a site visit
Doing a feasibility study is a practical first step to take on any commercial geothermal project. Even if there’s not a budget set aside for anything extensive, there are some simple first steps that will pay off down the road by setting realistic expectations for the client and the team. Topics include: understanding engineering duties, feasibility studies, overview of operating cost calculations, system pre-modeling, understanding site characteristics & coupling options, FTC testing, manifolding options, and installation logistics.
Week 3 - Peak building loads & energy modeling
This week we will review energy modeling in buildings. We will cover the different methods for estimating building loads and review options for calculating accurate system sizing. We will show you how to calculate system sizing by hand using formulas, then review some software options available for simplifying the process.
Off Week - This is your chance to catch up before we get into the complex material
This week will consist a few optional reading assignments to give everyone a chance to catch up and be on the same page. Starting next week we will begin our webinar sessions where the difficulty level in the material will ramp up a bit.
Week 4 - Introduction to ground loop heat transfer fluids
This week we we will cover ground loop heat transfer fluids.
Week 5 - GSHP equipment & system options
Most engineers eligible to sit for the CGD already have a solid grasp of mechanical systems. This week’s lesson helps to identify key areas of focus for geothermal systems – including equipment configurations, performance and proper selection.
Week 6 - Designing the Ground Heat Exchanger (GHEX)
This is the meatiest part of the course because this is what makes a geothermal system unique, and there’s so much to learn. In this week's lesson we’ll make sure you really understand how to properly design the ground heat exchanger.
Off Week - Another Chance to Catch Up
We've been covering a lot of complex material in the past few weeks. Please take this chance to catch up or re-watch the videos to make sure you understand the information and are ready to continue building on it.
Week 7 - Connecting the GHEX to the GSHP units
Now that you understand how to properly select equipment and design the ground heat exchanger, it is time to learn how to connect the inside system to the outside. In this week’s lesson, we will discuss ground loop headering, interior manifolding options, interior piping design and circulating pump selection.
Week 8 - Practical considerations, QA/QC & Commissioning
Once the system design in put on paper, you need to know how to verify that the system goes in as specified. In this section we discuss best practices for quality assurance, quality control and loopfield commissioning.
Week 9 - Exam Review: Let's Make Sure You Pass on the First Try
Wow – we just covered a lot of ground. Let’s take a deep breath and look back at what you’ve learned over the past nine weeks. What have you learned and what still needs to be clarified? This week we have a study guide and practice test to make sure you pass the CGD Exam.
AFTER THE COURSE - What You'll Need to Continue to Have Success in the Industry
As great as this course is, you'll never remember everything you learn. We'd like to provide the resources you'll need on an ongoing basis. Stay in touch and use these things as a lifeline when you need them.
Ryan Carda is a Mechanical Engineer at Geo Pro, Inc. and is a co-founder of Geo-Connections, Inc. (creators of LoopLink Geothermal design software). He is a co-author of “Design and Installation of Residential and Light Commercial GSHP Systems", developed in cooperation with the International Ground Source Heat Pump Association (IGSHPA). He has been involved in the ground source heat pump industry since 2006. His involvement in the industry has included training hundreds of students, as well as hands on experience designing, installing, commissioning and troubleshooting of all types of geothermal systems. Ryan graduated with his Master of Science degree in Engineering from South Dakota State University in 2006. Ryan enjoys instructing newcomers to the industry in hopes that they leave sharing his enthusiasm for geothermal technology. His main goal is to help promote and build confidence in ground source heat pumps through education in order to help it become a main-stream technology.
Dr. Remund has over 20 years of experience installing and designing geothermal systems. He has been a certified instructor for IGHSPA since 1994. He has been on the Mechanical Engineering faculty at South Dakota State University since 1988, where he teaches thermodynamics, heat transfer, fluid dynamics, design of thermal systems and applied laboratory courses. He is a co-author of the IGSHPA geothermal installer training manual titled "Design and Installation of Residential and Light Commercial GSHP Systems".
Dr. Remund has been principle investigator on many research projects associated with ground source heat pumps, specifically addressing heat transfer characteristics of grouting materials, soil and rock. He worked with regional electric utilities and the Geothermal Heat Pump Consortium through the Northern Geothermal Support Center at SDSU, through which hundreds have been trained in various aspects of ground source heat pump design and installation. Training and outreach activities continue in a limited capacity at SDSU, while Dr. Remund has become involved in private efforts to promote ground source heat pumps through design assistance, soil and rock formation thermal conductivity testing, and technical support for thermally-enhanced grouting materials.