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Water Source Heat Pumps Help River Community Save Energy

By David Holmes on July 2, 2009

Earlier this year, The Hermitage Project, a river boat community charity based on the Thames, teamed up with a leading environmentally friendly energy supplier to provide ‘green’ heat for its community.

ISO Energy, which offers a range of sustainable energy systems, employed the use of a special German engineered heat pump that extracts heat directly from the Thames. Other than the pump itself, which is powered by any standard electricity source including solar panels, the energy that is produced for The Hermitage Project is completely renewable. Furthermore, it does not cost a penny!

The system works by using looped piping that is connected to a ground source heat pump (or in this case water source). Heat is extracted from the ambient water temperature, which in this case is sourced from the Thames, and then compressed in order to produce heating. In order to provide underfloor heating, the heat is compressed up to ten times, whilst, in order to produce hot water, the heat must be compressed up to twenty times. Thus, other than the pump itself, there is no further cost to either The Hermitage Project or the environment.

ISO Energy claims that this revolutionary method of generating renewable energy is the way forward for future communities. This technology can be employed in existing riverside communities with the effect of significantly reducing energy prices. Furthermore, the carbon emissions associated with this form of energy supply are virtually zero. It has been estimated that The Hermitage Project will now be able to reduce its carbon footprint by up to five tonnes each year whilst reducing its central heating costs by a massive 80%. If this water source heating system can be replicated worldwide, the savings for the environment will be considerable.