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From waste heat to a resource

From waste heat to a resource

The overall objective of HeatUp is to upgrade waste heat back to high-temperature levels by the use of heat pumps in order to re-utilize the surplus energy.

Many industrial processes require high-temperature heat in the form of e.g. steam or hot water, which is extremely energy-demanding to produce, especially when using primary energy sources. At the same time vast amounts of waste heat are present in the form of low-temperature heat. The potential of industrial waste heat in Europe is estimated to be 750 TWh, corresponding to 23% of the total heat demand in the EU in 2010. In Norway, industrial waste heat amounts to about 20 TWh (as thermal energy), which corresponds to 15% of the total electricity demand in Norway in 2013.

Industrial heat is normally characterized as "waste" because of its temperature level, which is lower than the temperature demand of existing processes. Nevertheless, waste heat contains significant amounts of potential energy. By upgrading this heat back to high-temperature levels with a heat pump, it can be re-utilized by the industry or other consumers and processes.

Industrial heat pumps operate based on the same principle as residential heat pumps and they are currently limited to a high-temperature level of 80°C. HeatUp will push this temperature level up to 200°C while re-using waste heat at 30-40°C. For this purpose, it is necessary to find and investigate suitable working fluids. The project will focus on the application on natural working fluids (like ammonia, butane or water) since they have a GWP (Global Warming Potential) close or equal to zero.

HeatUp closely collaborates with its industrial partners in order to identify the potential of the technology and implement high-temperature heat pumps in today's production. Hereby the dependency on primary energy sources like oil, gas and also electricity is reduced and HeatUp contributes actively to the implementation of Norway's national R&D strategy, Energi 21, as well as achieving industrial energy policy objectives.

The industrial consortium of HeatUp:

  • Statoil ASA (Oil and Gas)
  • Statkraft Varme AS (District Heating)
  • Hydro Aluminum (Metal)
  • Vedde AS, member of TipleNine Group (Aquacultrue/Feed)
  • Tine SA (Food)
  • Mars GmbH (Petfood)

Supply industry:

  • Cadio AS
  • Hybrid Energy AS
  • EPCON Evaporation Technology AS

See the HeatUp webpage



Published 24 August 2015
Research Scientist
410 63 418

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