Performance analysis for the UK's first 5th generation heat network – The BEN case study at LSBU

Journal article


Gillich, A., Godefroy, J., Ford, A., Hewitt, M. and L'Hostis, J. (2021). Performance analysis for the UK's first 5th generation heat network – The BEN case study at LSBU. Energy. 243 (122843). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.energy.2021.122843
AuthorsGillich, A., Godefroy, J., Ford, A., Hewitt, M. and L'Hostis, J.
Abstract

The decarbonisation of heat requires a transition from gas boilers to low-carbon heating systems such as heat pumps. Efficiency gains can be achieved by linking heating systems through ambient loops called Fifth Generation District Heating and Cooling (5GDHC) networks. The UK needs working demonstrators to understand both the technical and practical challenges in the heat transition. The Balanced Energy Network (BEN) links two buildings on LSBU's campus and is the UK's first 5GDHC system at scale and among the first in the world to be retrofit in parallel to an incumbent gas system and include an active demand side response control system to toggle between energy vectors in way that minimises cost and carbon emissions. This paper presents performance data from its first year of operation in baseline mode, as it was commissioned and optimised. High temperature heat pumps were retrofit to an existing gas boiler circuit and match the 79 °C output temperature of the gas boiler system. No fabric upgrades were required and no pipes, ducts or heat emitters were resized, however the system maintained performance to reduce overall building carbon emissions by 13% and gas use by 40% across both buildings compared to the pervious heating season while the system was in use.

Year2021
JournalEnergy
Journal citation243 (122843)
PublisherElsevier
ISSN0360-5442
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1016/j.energy.2021.122843
Web address (URL)https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0360544221030929
Publication dates
Print15 Mar 2022
Online21 Dec 2021
Publication process dates
Accepted06 Dec 2021
Deposited26 Jan 2022
Accepted author manuscript
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File Access Level
Open
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