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The University of Southampton

Dr Fleur Loveridge 

Visiting Academic

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Dr Fleur Loveridge is Visiting Academic within Engineering and Physical Sciences at the University of Southampton.  She is based at the University of Leeds.


Fleur's research area "Foundations as an energy source" research area aims to fill significant gaps in our understanding of the behaviour of foundation piles and other ground heat exchangers. This topic is of key importance as use of ground heat exchangers in combination with ground source heat pump systems can contribute to reduction in energy demand and CO2 emissions for new buildings.

Fleur spent nine years working as a consultant in geotechnical engineering, mainly at Mott MacDonald and before then Babtie Group. Her work included investigation, design and construction supervision for a variety of large and small infrastructure projects and applied research and development projects covering various aspects of engineering geology and geotechnical engineering. These projects included the Panama Canal Third Set of Locks Project, A3 Hindhead Improvements, Network Rail Seasonal Preparedness Study, M1 Dundalk Western Bypass and High Speed 1 Ashford Tunnels.

Fleur is a Chartered Engineer and a Chartered Geologists. She is Honorary Publicity Officer for the British Geotechnical Association and is currently a member of the Editorial Advisory Panel for Geotechnique. She was a contributing author to the Ground Source Heat Pump Association Thermal Pile Standard and is a member of the new International Society for Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering Technical Committee on Energy Geotechnics.


Research interests

The use of ground energy systems or ground source heat pump systems has the potential to reduce building energy demand significantly. All such systems operate using some form of ground heat exchanger. Dr Loveridge's current work focusses on better understanding ground heat exchangers, with the aim that less conservative design will lead to greater uptake of the technology and ultimately to significant energy savings. She leads the research area "Foundations as an energy source" which considers the analysis of foundations piles and other ground heat exchangers. 

Current work includes instrumentation of operational pile and borehole heat exchangers.  This is essential to allow validation of new design methods as a lack of high quality field datasets has inhibited design development. Initial data from site monitoring is confirming the importance of the pile concrete in controlling large diameter pile behaviour. 

Dr Loveridge also maintains an interest in slope stability and soil reinforcement, especially the problems related to interactions of slopes with vegetation and climate. She played a leading role in Network Rail's Seasonal Preparedness Project, which demonstrated the influence of permeability in controlling interactions between climate and embankment stability. The project also improved our understanding of how different types of vegetation can bring stability and yet cause damaging deformations. These interactions are important as site surveys rarely quantify either of these factors, yet they are amongst the most important for controlling embankment and cutting behaviour.

Research project

Embankments and cut slopes
A pile heat exchanger
Installation of a test pile
Plant roots affect soil behaviour

Research group

Infrastructure Group

Research project(s)

Foundations as an energy source

How to access the heat beneath our feet by using building foundations to harvest thermal energy.

Dr Fleur Loveridge
Faculty of Engineering,
University of Leeds,
Leeds LS2 9JT


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