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Publication Date


First Advisor

Denise McKahn

Second Advisor

Michael Kinsinger

Document Type

Honors Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science




Geothermal, Renewable energy, Sustainability, Data calibration, Ground temperature model


Climate change is a serious problem caused by fossil fuels. This has led to a global trend of using renewable energies such as geothermal energy, solar energy, and wind energy, as alternatives to fossil fuels. In reaction to climate change, Smith College is respond- ing with their 2030 Carbon Neutrality Plan for carbon mitigation. For thermal loads, Smith College has the on-site District Energy Plan, which involves installing geother- mal heat exchangers on campus. In order to optimize geothermal systems, we need to understand how heat exchangers interact with the ground, hence the need for the undisturbed ground temperature model.

The undisturbed ground temperature model was found by calibrating the uncali- brated distributed temperature sensing (DTS) temperature data with a power fit. The undisturbed ground temperature model was found by averaging the calibrated temper- ature data by cable length. The model was then validated with the continental gradient and by using temperature data from different dates and times.


©2021 Jiwoo Seo. Access limited to the Smith College community and other researchers while on campus. Smith College community members also may access from off-campus using a Smith College log-in. Other off-campus researchers may request a copy through Interlibrary Loan for personal use.




80 pages : color illustrations. Includes bibliographical references (pages 79-80)