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Rocket Mass Heater for 'District' Heating

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It surprised me that no hits registered on permies.com for "district heating". Why could not a subterranean or earth-covered, insulated rocket mass heater be used to heat multiple dwellings? Perhaps this might obviate building code issues? Would this not be an excellent approach to wider adoption of the technology? Or, simply to promote the habit of sharing and community building?

The heat could be transferred by whatever means available, or by those most effective: air, fluids, etc.

Do examples already exist?

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Location: near Houston, TX; zone 8b
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Not enough BTU's in most rocket heaters to heat a whole "district".
Dax Robbe-Grillet
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Cindy Mathieu wrote:Not enough BTU's in most rocket heaters to heat a whole "district".

The original quotes on "district" were intended to imply something smaller than what is usually considered a 'district'. Perhaps, even something as simple as sharing the winter heating burden with a neighbor whose walls are only a few feet away.

Also, I wouldn't want to limit thinking to considering only "most" of anything: that's an imagination killer, and a recipe for failure.

This winter, with only my fireplace insert, I went through enough wood to heat three homes with a rocket mass heater. Why not connect those homes? We can't allow our neighbors to suffer burning methane.
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Dax Robbe-Grillet : So far you both are 100% correct ! The problem lies in your last paragraph, I am sure that with just a Fire place insert You were going through
enuf wood to heat 3 Homes !

The average D.I.Y. / Homebuilt Rocket Mass Heater RMH, Uses 1/5th of your wood amount or less!

There are multiple reasons why this is so-

A conventional Wood stove needs exhaust temperatures in the 350dF range or higher, And will blast that exhaust heat, For most of a 24 hr day in winter to achieve
minimum levels of space heating ! The RMH Typically runs 3-4 hours out of every 24 hrs, efficiently converting fuel wood into Heat Energy, and then storing that
heat energy within its Thermal Mass, with the RMH the exhaust gas temperatures are typically around 140df, regaining the latent heat of evaporation, and only
exhausting minimal combustion products, ( H2O and CO2 primarily ) for only a small fraction of the time your more conventional Wood stove is exhausting smoke
and other unburnt hydrocarbons !

Running the RMH on so little wood means that you would need to up-size a D.I.Y. Rocket Mass Heater into the range where it would need to have a full time operator
at your proposed central location, and would require feed back from the other homes being heated !

It would be much simpler, and end up using less or nearly the same materials to create 5 Rocket Mass Heaters, Installed in 5 different homes, to be run to match the
Exact needs of the separate houses !

Here is where I recommend going to rocket stoves.com, and download your copy(s) of the Brand New Third Edition of Ianto Evans Book " Rocket Mass Heaters"
This is money well spent as it allows you to tome here and talk with your fellow members using the same terminology for the same parts, and understand the size,
shape, and orientation that one part has to another ! For the Good of the Craft ! Big AL

A late thought that may say it clearer Just like 'with the grid' "Most' of us would use distributed power more efficiently that with the 'grid-tied' District power' A.L.
Switching from electric heat to a rocket mass heater reduces your carbon footprint as much as parking 7 cars. Tiny ad:
A rocket mass heater is the most sustainable way to heat a conventional home
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