In order to evaluate and improve the performance of a ground-coupled heat pump (GCHP) heating system with radiant floors as terminals, an exergy analysis based on test results is performed in this study. The system is divided into four subsystems, and the exergy loss and exergy efficiency of each subsystem are calculated using the expressions derived based on exergy balance equations. The average values of the measured parameters are used for the exergy analysis. The analysis results show that the two largest exergy losses occur in the heat pump and terminals, with losses of 55.3% and 22.06%, respectively, and the lowest exergy efficiency occurs in the ground heat exchange system. Therefore, GCHP system designers should pay close attention to the selection of heat pumps and terminals, especially in the design of ground heat exchange systems. Compared with the scenario system in which fan coil units (FCUs) are substituted for the radiant floors, the adoption of radiant floors can result in a decrease of 12% in heating load, an increase of 3.24% in exergy efficiency of terminals and an increase of 1.18% in total exergy efficiency of the system. The results may point out the direction and ways of optimizing GCHP systems.
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