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Integrated home heating – the importance of protocols and APIs

Delta-ee recently completed a consultancy piece for the Energy Systems Catapult looking at the integrated home energy landscape as it relates to heat pumps. In our work, we covered many aspects related to the integrated home heating market as well as the heat pump market supply chain. Here I discuss where we see this space is going.

Currently, many connected home devices and heating systems are siloed in their operation and are not fully interoperable. It often requires effort to integrate different parts of the system by homeowners or professionals. This is likely to change in the future.

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Reflecting on our predictions for gas heating trends at ISH 2019

Image from: https://ish.messefrankfurt.com/frankfurt/en.html

ISH 2019 was simply massive: 20,000 steps per day. But the long walk from the fair entrance to and around the main heating exhibits in the new hall 12 was well worth the exertion.

Having had the time to reflect on the week’s announcements, introductions and unveilings – how accurate were our predictions for the showings of companies involved in high-efficiency gas heating?

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UK heat pump market likely to double by 2025

With the Chancellor’s recent announcement that fossil fuel heating could be banned in all new homes built after 2025, there will no doubt be significant opportunity for low carbon heating into the future. However, while we wait with anticipation for building regulations to be updated, there is still strong potential for growth in UK heat pump market.

Delta-ee recently reviewed the opportunities and barriers for heat pumps to assess how the market is likely to develop over the next few years. Despite the uncertainties surrounding future support for heat pumps after the Renewable Heat Incentive ends in 2021, and the potential negative impacts of Brexit on the heating market (however that might eventually pan out!), our central forecast foresees the UK heat pump market doubling in size by 2025.

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Addressing the rural challenge - electrifying off-gas grid heating

Towards the end of 2018, my colleagues and I finished working on a project for the UK Department for Business Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) looking into the ‘Technical Feasibility of Electric Heating in Rural Off-Gas Grid Dwellings’. This was an important project examining the often forgotten off-gas grid sector. The results from this work helped inform BEIS’ response to the call for evidence on the future framework for heat in buildings.

Why off-gas grid homes?

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Decarbonised Heating and Cooling: Don’t forget the customer

Image from Decarb Heat

Slowly, but very surely, the EU is getting us used to the idea of a fully decarbonised heating and cooling sector across Europe. It’s a bold and necessary objective which has profound implications for companies right across the energy sector. 

But is the European Commission going about it the right way?  

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What do installers think of digital sales platforms for heating systems and home services?

That’s the question Delta-ee’s upcoming installer research is aiming to answer. The heating system installation market in the UK is currently dominated by small independent local tradespeople. These businesses do both technical work and sales. However, a growing number of digital platforms are emerging where sales are facilitated by a third party. These digital platforms certainly have the potential to significantly disrupt existing sales channels, but getting installers on board will be crucial to their success.

We’ve seen lots of activity in the market for booking home services online since British Gas launched its Local Heroes platform in mid-2017. Heatable came on the scene shortly thereafter, marketing itself to installers as “your digital salesman”. Smart thermostat manufacturer Tado has since begun offering boiler repair services through its partnership with HomeServe, and both John Lewis Home Solutions and Amazon Home Services have now launched in the UK. Hoppy, born out of EDF Energy’s innovation accelerator, recently unveiled its complete home management site with a number of services to help users simplify running their homes – including a tradesperson booking portal.

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