Scottish Nightclub is Powered By the Heat From Dancers Moving the Venue to Thermal Energy
A Scottish night club has found it can reduce its carbon footprint by 70 tons per year if it relies on the beat to make the heat.
Glasgow arts venue SWG3 now has a dancefloor that absorbs body heat from the dancers and converts it to thermal energy, between 250 and 600 watts depending on how intense the music is.
The venue had announced the idea last year, but has only just got it turned on; not a moment to soon considering the energy crisis.
The thermal energy is channeled via a carrier fluid to a deep borehole 650 feet (200 meters) underground where it is charged like a thermal battery before being pumped back up to provide heating and A/C to the club.
TownRock Energy Geothermal designed the system which they aptly branded as “Body Heat” and founder David Townsend told the BBC that medium intensity music like the Rolling Stones could generate 250 watts.
“But if you’ve got a big DJ, absolutely slamming basslines and making everyone jump up and down, you could be generating 500-600W of thermal energy,” he said.
SWG3 has committed to carbon neutrality by 2025, and the managers insist that despite setting them back £600,000 they can recoup the investment in five years by disconnecting the gas boilers, that would run them around one-tenth of that, through the reduction in energy bills.
“If we can make it work here in this environment, there’s no reason why we can’t take it to other venues, not just here in Scotland and the UK, across Europe and further afield,” SWG3-owner Fleming-Brown told BBC News.
Townsend has gained big interest from the SchwuZ nightclub in Berlin, and said they don’t want to be outpaced in cool clubbing technology.
The advantage of using water as a heating system is that while it requires a lot of energy to heat up, it holds onto that energy much longer than air. With the carrier fluid stored under ground it’s well insulated, and therefore also more efficient than any gas heating system.
Bodyheat was financed largely through government subsidy from Glasgow city.