Articles

What is District Heating?

What is District Heating?

District Heating has been identified as one of the key technologies that will enable the UK to decarbonise its heating supplies. The Association for Decentralised Energy ADE) has produced the following illustrations that explain the very basic concept of 'What is District Heating?'  

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Call for Industry-Wide District Heating Quality Standards

Call for Industry-Wide District Heating Quality Standards

Mark Whettall, managing director of CPV Ltd - one of the UK’s oldest manufacturers of district heating pipe systems, highlights the bright future for district heating as a technology that will help decarbonise the UK’s space heating and hot water supplies, but tempers this with a warning that the industry must not repeat the same mistakes made during the last boom of the 1970s.

The simple concept of district heating, district energy or even community heating – call it what you will - is going through a renaissance in the UK. With the ability to deliver efficient and affordable heating and hot water to homes and businesses from a variety of sources – including those from low-carbon, renewable generation technologies, it will not only help our country reach its legally-binding targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but will also go a long way towards alleviating fuel poverty for the most vulnerable members of society.

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District Heating - Delivering Low-Carbon Energy

District Heating - Delivering Low-Carbon Energy

Mark Whettall, managing director, CPV Ltd

Although it’s been around for many decades in the UK, if you were to ask the average person in the street what district heating is, the likelihood is that they won’t have a clue. This will hopefully change in the coming years as the technology looks set to play an ever-increasing role in helping decarbonise our nation’s heating and hot water supplies.

It’s a simple concept. Use a pair of highly-efficient, buried pre-insulated pipes to deliver hot water from a centralised energy source to multiple consumers. The exact definition of what constitutes a district heating system is still up for debate – but if there’s more than one consumer sharing the same heat source, then it’s district heating.

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Taking the Stress out of District Heating

Taking the Stress out of District Heating

Mark Whettall, managing director, CPV Ltd discusses the issues behind the use of stress analysis techniques in the UK.

Spurred-on by ever-increasing carbon targets for the built environment, more and more developers are turning to district heating as a means of delivering low-carbon heating and hot water to consumers. So with the technology finally looking like it’s going to enter the mainstream, it’s important that the expanding sector does not repeat the same mistakes that were made when local authorities first adopted the technology during the 1970s and 80s.

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Steel or Polymer Pipes for district heating?

Steel or Polymer Pipes for district heating?

In this article, Mark Whettall, managing director of CPV Ltd, a UK-based district heating pipe manufacturer explores the choices behind selecting pre-insulated pipe systems.

When planning a district heating (DH) network of any size, the choice of pre-insulated pipe system is important. In the late 1960s, when the first of the modern era of bonded-pre-insulated pipe systems started to appear, steel – encased in rigid, bonded polyurethane foam and an outer casing of HDPE was the order of the day. The latter half of the twentieth century saw a rapid development in thermoplastic technologies and manufacturers soon latched onto the idea of using a service pipe that would not corrode, that could be supplied on rolls and would offer flexibility unheard of in the traditional steel systems. Now, after around a quarter of a century, both systems are still going strong, but the young upstart has been gaining a lot of ground over its rival.

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Decarbonising the UK’s Heat Supplies with District Heating

Decarbonising the UK’s Heat Supplies with District Heating

A fiendishly simple concept, district heating (DH) has been in the UK for many decades - however, it’s only relatively recently that it has gained prominence as a means by which the UK can tackle its sizable carbon emissions from heating and hot water production.

On its own, all DH will do is deliver heat energy to multiple consumers in the form of hot water, via a highly-efficient, buried pre-insulated pipe network – offering an economy of scale that both increases efficiency and lowers energy costs. Couple this to a low- or zero-carbon heat source such as combined heat and power (CHP) system or a biomass boiler and things really do start to get interesting – particularly in terms of the carbon reductions achievable.

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Squandering Biomass Heat Energy Must Stop

Squandering Biomass Heat Energy Must Stop

In this article, Mark Whettall - managing director of CPV Ltd, a UK manufacturer of district heating pipe systems - questions the way in which the Renewables Obligation is encouraging conventional power stations to squander biomass – when it would be better employed in removing carbon from the country’s heating and hot water supplies.

DECC has finally announced its strategy for decarbonising heating and hot water supplies with the publishing of its report The Future of Heating: Meeting the Challenge. With this, district heating has finally gained its due recognition as a technology that can enable the efficient delivery of low-carbon heating and hot water supplies to consumers – regardless of whether they are domestic, commercial or industrial.

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