Geothermal energy

Geothermal plant sizing

Geothermal probe fields are sized, and potential thermal energy poles are evaluated by the PILESIM2 or EED programme, based on all the data provided by the client. 

Simulations are conducted with the objective of sizing a geothermal probe field or evaluating the thermal potential provided by energy poles, checking the technical feasibility of the system in the short and long term, establishing the maximum powers of the heat pump and the cooling machine coupled to the geothermic probes or energy poles. The calculation parameters and the results of the simulations are presented in a concise report. These consulting services do not include work orders, technical specifications or the prices of geothermal components.

The basic fee is for a simple sizing calculation and does not include further calculations that might be required later in the project, or any travel expenses for meetings or to present results.


PILESIM2 is a dynamic simulation programme for calculating the thermal heating/cooling performance of a system utilising energy poles or geothermal probes. The long-term effects, which are calculated for the correct sizing of a plant, can be simulated for up to 50 years.

A user-friendly interface allows users to specify the parameters for their specific situations: heating or cooling, heat pump or cooling machine, energy poles or geothermal probes, local geology and hydrogeology.  

A number of different system configurations are available; the poles or probes can be coupled directly to the cooling distribution system (geocooling), or by utilising a cooling machine. The system can also be dual-purpose: for example, supplementary energy can be supplied in order to satisfy specific and particular heating and cooling requirements.

PILESIM2 was developed by SUPSI ISAAC, and received financial support from the Federal Energy Office (OFEN). PILESIM2 draws on the experience acquired in the course of simulations conducted on energy pole systems, including the Dock Midfield project at Zurich airport (involving the development and validation of simulation tools).

Those who need to size a geothermal probe field, or assess the thermal potential of energy poles using PILESIM2, can benefit from ISAAC technical support. The sizing process is executed step-by-step, in order to learn how to use the PILESIM2 programme and resolve sizing problems. Technical support services last for one working day at most, and in order to receive these services users must first purchase the PILESIM2 programme.

PILESIM2 is provided free of charge, while costs for any training are agreed on an individual basis.