Ener-G teams up boreholes with absorption heat pumps

Ener-G, absorption heat pump, ground source, space heating, renewable energy
These four gas-fired absorption at The Open University draw heat from boreholes to supply low-carbon heating for a new 2000 m2 development.

A closed-loop ground-source gas-fired absorption heat-pump system is providing low-carbon heat to The Open University in Milton Keynes. The heat pumps were supplied by Ener-G, which claims this is the largest such installation in the UK, with a total heat output of 140 kW to serve the 2000 m2 Building 12 new-build development that forms part of the Walton Hall campus. The building is targeting a BREEAM ‘Outstanding’ rating.

Other features of this building include natural ventilation, night-time cooling, solar chimneys, automatic lighting controls, a green roof, solar water heating and solar PV panels.

Ener-G drilled 13 boreholes, each 100 m deep, to install a ground-loop system serving four gas-fired absorption heat pumps. They are expected to reduce CO2 emissions by about 45% compared to using condensing boilers.

Alan Burrell, director of estates at The Open University, said, ‘Sustainability and carbon reduction are at the core of our development principles, and the heat pumps are working very effectively to deliver a plentiful source of low-carbon heat. They contribute an important element to the university’s carbon-reduction strategy.

Paul Burley, managing director of Ener-G Sustainable Technologies, said, ‘We are delighted to deliver a project of this size. It demonstrates the effectiveness of the technology in supplying reliable and affordable low-carbon heat. The education sector is championing the uptake of heat pumps in the UK, providing an important showcase for this fast-growing sector.

Among the financial advantages of using gas-fired absorption heat pumps are a reduction in energy consumption of up to half and exemption from the Climate Change Levy. Legislative benefits include cost savings relating to the CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme and improved EPCs and DECs.

Ener-G worked in partnership with M&E contractor Rushmoor Mechanical Services on this project.

For more information on this story, click here: Nov 2011, 108
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