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Think about heat pumps and it might be electrically driven heat pumps that you think of first. Heat pumps can, however, be driven by heat itself rather than an electrical compressor. That’s where thermally driven heat pumps (TDHPs) come in.
And while boilers are efficient, thermally driven heat pumps are a step above, capturing the low-grade heat from the surrounding air and combining this with the efficient combustion of gaseous fuels. So, what part do thermally driven heat pumps have to play in the future of the energy transition?
The Netherlands has set some of the most ambitious targets in Europe to phase out natural gas in heating (and elsewhere), aiming to be “natural gas free” by 2050. This is no small ask in a country where, today, almost 90% of the >7million homes use natural gas - usually via an individual boiler (or “CV-ketel”) as their main source of heating and hot water.
Since the gas free target was set, heat pump sales have grown rapidly, increasing numbers of new homes are being built without a gas connection, and the government subsidy supporting renewable heating installations – the ISDE – proved so popular, it had to be closed to new applications part-way through 2019.
Last week experts from Delta-ee’s Gas Heating Service contributed to discussions at key natural gas and fuel cell industry events - 1,000s of miles apart - in the US and Japan. It was a great opportunity to share Delta-ee’s latest research on two continents outside of Europe and sparked some interesting discussion with fellow delegates.
European perspective on decarbonisation and CHP
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