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How a Heat Pump Works

 
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JohnB



Joined: 22 May 2006
Posts: 6457
Location: Beautiful sunny West Wales!

PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 1:20 pm    Post subject: How a Heat Pump Works Reply with quote

This is a nice simple explanation of how a ground source heat pump works, with easy to follow pictures. I think it makes it clearer than anything else I've seen
http://periodproperty.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=13535

I can't guarantee that all the following discussion will stay on topic though!
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John

Eco-Hamlets UK - Small sustainable neighbourhoods
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adam2
Site Admin


Joined: 02 Jul 2007
Posts: 6208
Location: North Somerset

PostPosted: Fri Apr 26, 2013 10:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes a good explanation.
The basic principle is really quite simple, though the practical application tends to be more complex.
In the absence of mains gas, heat pumps are worth considering.
In the rare case of small scale hydroelectric power being available, then a heat pump is very worthwhile since heat may be extracted from the same water that works the turbine, without any significant extra civil works.

Whilst in theory a heat pump worked from wind generated electricity may sound attractive, a larger wind turbine and direct resistance heating is often a better bet.
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BritDownUnder



Joined: 21 Sep 2011
Posts: 238
Location: Hunter Valley, NSW, Australia

PostPosted: Fri Apr 26, 2013 1:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have some small reverse cycle air conditioners here in Australia. They can either heat the air or cool it (and even dehumidify) with the opposite happening at the outside heat exchanger (mine uses air but I understand there are also ground source).

I dont use mains gas (just another standing charge to pay) and try to use it only when the solar panels are generating sufficient power to cover the use. I believe it uses about 550 Watts on full belt and can heat the room nicely. I think it is around a COP of 4 so actually generates about 2000 Watts of heat.

You would be surprised about the temperature range possible here. I have recorded -2C on a winters nights and seen a frost once or twice and we have had 47C in high summer. The heat exchanger is under the house so the air temperature is somewhat moderated. i understand that an air source heat pump is fairly useless at temperatures much below freezing as my second air con which is on the roof is much less effficient, barely heats at all on a cold day. Presumably the air on the roof is much colder not having come from under the house.

On dark winter evenings I light the woodburner. Best to have a few strings to one's bow.
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