Modeling the thermal performance of low temperature hydronic heated pavements
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2019

Winter road maintenance is costly but it is necessary in order to keep roads accessible and safe during winter. Current winter road maintenance methods use 600,000 tons of salt annually, in the Nordic countries. The salt ends up in the environment along the roads and results in environmental challenges. Alternative winter maintenance methods that use heat instead of salt are in use today. However, those systems are designed to use high temperature of about 20–35 °C. This paper presents a numerical model for designing low temperature (4–8 °C) hydronic heated pavements (HHP). The model is validated against an experimental setup and different control strategies are evaluated. The validation indicated that the developed model can predict the behavior of the HHP with a root mean square error (RMSE) <1.4 °C for surface temperatures and <0.4 °C for the return fluid. In this paper the model is used with two different control strategies. A basic strategy controlling the system based on air temperature and one strategy based on dew point temperature. With dew point regulation the energy consumption can be reduced by 62%. However, the energy consumption is still in the range of 125–180kWh/m 2 for the location of Östersund, Sweden. We found that the HHP system can utilize low temperature sources like waste energy or geothermal energy that is freely available. By using renewable energy for winter road maintenance, the environmental impact from winter road maintenance can be reduced.

Snow melting

Winter maintenance

Hydronic heated pavement

Surface conditions

Numerical modeling




Josef Johnsson

Chalmers, Arkitektur och samhällsbyggnadsteknik, Byggnadsteknologi

Bijan Adl-Zarrabi

Chalmers, Arkitektur och samhällsbyggnadsteknik, Byggnadsteknologi

Cold Regions Science and Technology

0165-232X (ISSN)

Vol. 161 81-90







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