Adveco AD Wall-Mounted Water Heaters For Commercial Properties

  • A range of three compact commercial semi-instantaneous gas condensing water heaters
  • Perfect for applications requiring direct contact with soft and softened water
  • Compact and smart for no-nonsense installation and maintenance

Commercial hot water specialist Adveco, announces the Adveco AD range of high-efficiency condensing gas-fired wall-mounted water heaters. Designed to provide a compact, high capacity and reliable method for delivering instantaneous hot water to a building, the new range consists of three models, the AD16 (27kW rated heat output), AD22 (33 kW) and AD37 (61 kW).

The AD is a range of ‘A’ class energy-efficient wall-mounted water heaters, with a net efficiency of up to 107% for the production of domestic hot water (DHW). With an efficient pre-mix burner and minimal NOₓ and CO emissions, the AD range is an eco-friendly way to serve a DHW system. Featuring a high 1:8 modulation ratio, wall-mounted ADs ensure maximum efficiency even during periods of low demand.

The wall-mounted water heater features a single high-quality patented heat exchanger constructed from a continuous, non-welded run of  AISI 316Ti titanium-stabi­lised stainless steel, providing exceptional construction strength and corrosion resistance. The brand-exclusive three-pass design features large bore, circular tube cross-sections that reduce the collection of debris.

Bill Sinclair, technical director, Adveco said, “For property renovation where space is at a premium or when existing gas appliances need modernising, the AD wall-mounted water heaters range delivers highly efficient operation in a compact form factor. The titanium-stabilised stainless-steel construction of the AD’s heat exchangers is also the perfect response to counter the concerns of corrosion in soft or softened water applications.”

Also included is an inbuilt controller with an LCD display that ensures full temperature control and a maintenance self-check of primary components and functions.

Additional Information

  • Compact wall-hung arrangement
  • High-efficiency pre-mix burner provides a large modulation range
  • Ultra-low NOₓ emissions at 16-29 mg/kWh
  • Available using natural gas or LPG
  • Supports standard concentric or parallel flue systems using an adaptor for low-cost 80/125 mm diameter PP available on request
  • Integrated run/fault signal for connection to BMS

Extra Gains For Net Zero Restaurants

Commercial hot water specialist Adveco is working in partnership with a global restaurant brand to support the rollout of net zero restaurants demonstrating low emission innovations throughout its chain of UK drive-through and high street franchises.

Through its programme of live metering, Adveco demonstrated that servicing domestic hot water (DHW) water demands of between 1200-1500 litres per day could equate to as much as 20% of total energy usage within the organisation’s target net zero restaurants. A recent refurbishment of a restaurant in the King’s Cross area of London provided an opportunity to address the emissions generated by this provision of hot water for the restaurant. In addition, working within existing building limits means applications need to maximise often limited plant room space. This was especially true of this central London location which also faced problems with limescale due to the hardness of the water supply.

Working to an all-electric specification, Adveco designed an application that would harness a 9kW FPi32 air source heat pump (ASHP) for preheat and supplying additional top-up heat with an ARDENT P 12kW electric boiler. These would supply thermal energy to a mains water-fed compact SST500 stainless steel twin-coil indirect cylinder.

By combining ASHP and an electric boiler Adveco can address many of the complexities associated with integrating ASHPs into existing buildings. This combination enables systems to be sized down, by as much as half in terms of ASHP requirements delivering immediate capital savings as electric boilers are far less expensive compared to an equivalent heat pump. You also immediately reduce the physical size of the system, embodied carbon and demand from the electric supply. Additionally, the system retains redundancy should there ever be a failure.

Balancing a hybrid electric system is key to ensuring efficient operation. Adveco supplied the controls to assure the water heating remains consistent, optimising the ASHP preheat and top-up from the boiler to reduce energy demands and the building’s emissions.

The other advantage of incorporating the ARDENT electric boiler was that it heats water using immersion heaters located in a small tank within the boiler housing rather than directly installed into the hot water tank. This creates a sealed ‘primary’ loop to the indirect coil in the SST500 cylinder. The electric boiler heats the same water continuously so there is only a small, finite amount of scale in the system which will not damage the elements. The heat exchanger in the cylinder is a large coil operating at a relatively low (80°C) temperature eliminating the common problems of destructive limescale build-up seen in direct immersion electric heating.

The electric boiler operates at the same efficiency as an electric immersion heater (100%) and so the only overall difference in system efficiency is the minimal pump electrical consumption and a negligible amount of heat loss in the pipework

Although the system takes up a little more space than an all-in-one electric cylinder, it has more versatility. It requires less clearance for the cylinder, so it was compact enough to fit into the extremely limited space allowed for plant in the restaurant. With the cylinder forming significantly less scale, the restaurant has gained from vastly improved reliability while reducing maintenance demands, for both operational and maintenance savings on top of crucial emission reductions.

Visit the Adveco restaurant resource for more guidance on delivering low carbon and renewables to help achieve net zero restaurants by 2050, or read our free handbook. 

Why The Move To Big Sustainability Starts With Water Heating

This September Adveco is supporting the Southern Sustainability Partnership at The Big Sustainability Expo taking place in Southampton on the 22nd. The Expo is dedicated to environmental management, corporate sustainability and the drive to net zero.

The Expo has a broad remit across corporate sustainability from energy procurement to green office supplies. Here at Adveco, our specialisation in domestic hot water applications (DHW) for commercial projects places us right in the centre of the sustainability mix, helping address carbon reduction and air quality through improved energy management and reduction, and leading the charge in innovating application designs that leverage renewable solar and air-source heat pumps as part of wider electrical and mechanical projects. Whether embracing new low-carbon building projects or supporting organisations with legacy buildings and infrastructure that want to introduce greater sustainability, we are positioned to support these goals. A very large proportion of our work, as a result, is bespoke and, as an independent company, we are able to recommend the best possible choice of appliances for optimal provision of often business-critical hot water services.

For more than 50 years Adveco has been the trusted, award-winning specialist when it comes to creating hot water systems for the building services industry. We are committed to partnering with our commercial and public sector customers, providing invaluable support from a single entity for the design, supply and then service of our applications, providing consistency from inception and on through the operational life. This is especially valuable as it places focus on reducing carbon and controlling costs not only in terms of capital investment but also for operational expenditure. It also means we can advise and adjust to adapt to new technologies as they become available and can be shown to have a practical advantage in striving for net zero by 2050.

Today, our applications are primarily built around air source heat pumps, solar thermal, direct electric and gas-fired water heaters and boilers. A wide range of thermal storage vessels and ancillaries support bespoke and hybrid system designs for new build and refurbishment projects. We can also bring all this technology together into either bespoke or pre-sized prefabricated hot water plant rooms. These are constructed off-site at our facilities and delivered ready for immediate installation, minimising the onsite requirements for plumbing and electrical connections. A plant room can now be delivered, installed and operational in a matter of days and often makes use of unused and wasted space, from rooftops to waste ground.

Looking forward, especially for those businesses already on gas, there is a strong potential for hydrogen blend and truly green hydrogen-based systems that hold the potential to take us to net zero faster and with less physical alteration to existing buildings, which translates to lower cost implementation and a ready familiarity for operating and maintaining services. Most modern gas appliances will already be capable of accepting the intended 20% hydrogen/natural gas blend currently being tested for the grid, whilst 100% hydrogen blend will form the second generation approach as services roll out nationally through the late 2030s and 2040s.

True sustainability for much of the UK’s commercial real estate will therefore be a longer-term project, but that doesn’t mean we can sit on our laurels. Every business can begin to make changes now that will have a more profound impact as we move closer to the 2050 deadline, small changes quickly aggregate into major shifts in the way you and your staff think and operate. Much focus has been placed on space heating, but, if this past summer heat wave is not an aberration but a symptom of global warming as most claim, then focus will inevitably shift from heating to cooling and indoor air quality (IAQ). Water heating however remains the exception that makes year-round demands on business no matter the weather conditions. For many, it is a necessity for day-to-day operations. Hot water provision is a major source of energy demand for some businesses, as much as 30% of the total energy usage, so if you are trying to decide where to begin investing efforts toward greater sustainability, water heating is going to be a good starting point. Addressing how hot water is generated to meet demands is a really sensible place to begin tackling sustainability issues, reducing energy usage and emissions in a practical, real-world manner right now and setting the agenda for positive investment in sustainability.

That all pays dividends, it is better for the environment, for staff and customers, and it’s good for business to be seen to be making a real investment in the future. Plus, you gain more modern, efficient and potentially more cost-effective building services which all help with the bottom line.

Come and speak to us on stand 99 in the Kingsland Suite at The Big Sustainability Expo about your hot water requirements. If you haven’t registered to attend you can do so for free here.

Building Sustainability Into Commercial DHW

For more than fifty years, Adveco has been a leading innovator providing domestic hot water (DHW) applications for commercial-scale projects across the UK. Today its focus is shifting to encompass a blend of traditional and new, more renewable technologies in the form of solar thermal and especially heat pumps building sustainability into commercial DHW systems.

With a predicted one-third rise in non-domestic floor space by 2050, much of the current focus resides on new builds, but this still leaves more than 1.6 million pre-existing non-domestic buildings in England and Wales, generating almost one-fifth of the UK’s carbon emissions, needing expert, practical support.

Air source heat pumps (ASHP) have become the poster child technology for the government’s net zero strategy and therefore a core tool for building sustainability into commercial DHW systems.  The advantage of ASHPs is that, with performance greater than 100%, they can extract additional energy from outside of the building’s metered systems delivering significant carbon savings. For a commercial DHW system, it is recommended that a working water temperature from the ASHP, such as Adveco’s FPi32 or L70, must be at least 55°C. This is certainly attainable from current generation ASHPs when deployed in a hybrid approach. This uses the ASHP as preheat and combines it with either gas-fired or more preferably an electric top-up to achieve the required hot water temperature. This is where the additional system complexity and cost can creep in. But by correctly balancing a system through a mix of physical spacing in the vessel and system monitoring with dedicated controls, as developed for the Adveco FUSION, the system no longer fights itself, working seamlessly to deliver the highest operational efficiencies

In line with the European Commission’s proposal for a tightening of F-Gas regulations, development work continues at pace to support the introduction of R290, or propane as it is more commonly known. This refrigerant offers a coefficient of performance (COP) that enables working flow temperatures from an ASHP of up to 75°C and potentially much higher. This means future commercial systems can be less complex, without the need for additional electric immersion for high-temperature top-up and flushing for legionella protection. That said, immersions remain perfectly suitable for low-demand backup applications in boiler-fed indirect cylinders, ensuring business-critical DHW demands are met.

What we have seen more recently though is a shift in use, where immersions are used ‘directly’ in high-demand commercial applications as the primary heat source. An electric immersion heater has a high heat intensity compared to gas or indirect and, when coupled with high operating temperatures and hard water will increase the rate of scale formation which, over time, will cause the element to rupture.

In response, protecting a system from limescale is often only addressed by a vigorous cleaning regime. This method has a cost and downtime associated with it that is not acceptable for many commercial buildings.  For this reason, minimisation of scale formation with a water softener or a scale inhibitor may be adopted, but for many sites neither provides a satisfactory response because of space, maintenance, downtime, or cost.  A better option for these sites would be to replace the immersion heaters with a low-scale forming hot water system.

The new Adveco ARDENT electric boiler range provides a proven and cost-effective answer. Electric boilers still utilise immersion heaters located in a small tank heat exchanger within the boiler housing. This electric boiler supplies a sealed ‘primary’ loop to an indirect coil in the cylinder. The electric boiler heats the same water continuously so there is only a finite amount of scale in the system which will not damage the elements. The heat exchanger in the cylinder is a large coil operating at relatively low temperatures. Adveco’s extensive experience with indirect coil use in the UK has shown that scale is not a significant problem in these systems. The electric boiler operates at the same efficiency as an electric immersion heater (100%) so the only overall difference in system efficiency is the minimal pump electrical consumption and a small amount of heat loss in the pipework.

An electric boiler hot water system will take up a little more space than an all-in-one electric cylinder, but it has more versatility and requires less clearance for the cylinder. Similarly priced to an immersion heater, an electric boiler-based system will cost slightly more due to the small amount of additional installation work. But with virtually no maintenance and the cylinder forming significantly less scale, vastly improving reliability, the operational and maintenance savings will offset these additional capital costs. The electric boiler additionally offers a level of redundancy that is not achieved with a single immersion heater.

As the limitation on new gas grid connections for heating systems becomes effective this year, it will become critical for system longevity to recognise the new challenges electric-only presents over more familiar gas-based applications. If a business already uses gas, then it can still upgrade to new gas appliances until 2035, with 100% hydrogen-ready options extending that window well into the 2040s based on current appliance lifespan.

Adveco continues to support the refurbishment of existing buildings, recently extending its ranges of direct-fired condensing water heaters – the AD and the ADplus. Both ranges provide a compact, floor-standing design that is easy to introduce into an existing plant room to provide high-demand semi-instantaneous and instantaneous hot water applications.  Improved combustion efficiency means the burner requires less gas, delivering up to 30% savings in fuel consumption, making it more cost-effective, while reducing emissions.  For smaller on-demand needs, ADplus heats only what is necessary, with no ignition for smaller withdrawals providing considerable additional energy savings. Both AD and ADplus as a result exhibit ultra-low NOX (Class 6 appliance at 27 mg/kWh) and CO emissions (19ppm). With the government already committed to enabling the blending of hydrogen in the gas grid, it is also worth noting that these latest generation direct-fired condensing water heaters will already support the initial 20% hydrogen/natural gas blend.

Together, these technologies offer actual development arcs right now for existing commercial properties that are currently on gas, or new builds seeking to embrace low or no emission choices building sustainability into commercial DHW systems for more environmentally friendly operations that will help organisations achieve net zero by 2050.

Adveco ARDENT Electric Boilers For Commercial Hot Water

  • A range of compact wall-mounted and floor-standing electric boilers from 12 – 100 kW
  • Provides high-temperature top-up for heat pumps systems
  • Counters limescale production in hard water areas as part of an indirect DHW system

Commercial hot water specialist Adveco, announces the range of commercial ARDENT electric boilers. Encompassing wall-hung and floor-standing variants with heat outputs from 12 to 100 kW, ARDENT provides an easy-to-integrate, high capacity, reliable, and compact response for electric hot water and central heating demands in commercial buildings.

“Designed to serve an indirect water heater or heating system, multiple electric heating elements immersed into ARDENT’s integrated water storage tank provide a rapid and reliable source of thermal energy for those seeking to avoid a reliance on gas energy supplies,” said Bill Sinclair, technical director, Adveco. “ARDENT can be combined with heat pump systems to provide a high-temperature energy source during the coldest months, or, as part of an indirect hot water system, can help eliminate damaging scale build-up commonly seen on direct electrical immersion heaters.”

The front-mounted controller with an LCD display provides intuitive control. With stepped power control and integrated overheat protection, ARDENT reduces start-up current and provides optimum heating output. ARDENT economically adjusts the heating load when approaching the set point temperature and range rating to tailor the boiler power to suit the application and reduce wear on the heating elements.

The compact wall-hung ARDENT is available in two ranges, ADRENT Standard and ARDENT Plus, offering outputs from 12 to 36 kW with multiple heating elements that provide built-in redundancy.

The ARDENT Standard 24 kW and 36 kW models feature one to three heating elements with thermostat input and output control to an external pump.

The ARDENT Plus 9 kW, 12kW and 24 kW models feature six to nine heating elements a front-mounted controller with LCD display, and as well as an integrated expansion vessel, relief valve, and circulation pump. Additional controls for a 3-port valve and fault output are also included.

For larger-scale applications, ARDENT electric boilers are also available as a floor-standing appliances with 60 kW, 80 kW and 100 kW heat outputs. Stepped element control is included, as well as an automatic air relief valve, safety valve, and temperature and pressure sensors. The integral controller boasts an LCD display and fault output.

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Additional Information

  • Wall-mounted ARDENT S & P has a protective IP40-rated outer shell. ARDENT floor standing models are rated IP20.

Adveco AD named Finalist in the H&V News Awards 2022

Commercial hot water specialist Adveco announces that the AD water heater range has been selected as a finalist in the commercial heating category of the H&V  News Awards 2022.

Securing its nomination through innovation, effectiveness and environmental impact, the Adveco AD offers a range of commercial semi-instantaneous gas condensing water heaters composed of four models, from 70 to 280 kW supplying up to 5088 l/h of DHW recovery Δt 50°C.

“We are honoured to once again be selected as a finalist in the H&V News Awards 2022,” said Greg Brushett, UK sales manager, Adveco. “The AD with its patented powerful, space-saving design has been our response to the increase in the daily demands for year-round hot water within the commercial sector.”

Conceived for high-demand semi-instantaneous hot water applications, to utilise the AD to its full potential, Adveco recommends combining the AD with a 200 – 2500 litres capacity buffer storage tank (such as Adveco’s SSB-D). Such a system, with optimised DHW direct heating, will guarantee consistent DHW with stable temperature even when making small withdrawals, as well as providing higher availability of DHW during peak period withdrawals.

AD’s exceptional operational responsiveness and highly effective performance can also be deployed in order to supply peak demands and redundancy for commercial buildings with an existing gas connection and large-scale ASHP to water systems.

“Equally applicable to both new projects or renovation work where a lack of space would traditionally stall or quickly drive up costs of a project.  The AD provides a tough all-around choice, even in corrosive soft water areas where other commercial water heaters will struggle,” adds Greg. “And with ultra-low emissions as a result of highly efficient combustion, these capabilities make the AD stand out in the marketplace and worthy of its finalist status.”

The winners will be announced at the Heating & Ventilation News Awards on Thursday 24th November 2022. Good luck to all the finalists.

Adveco FUSION & AD Selected as Finalists in 2022 HVR Awards

  • Adveco AD Water Heater range is named a finalist in the  Commercial Heating Product of the Year category
  • Adveco FUSION named a finalist in the Heat Pump Product of the Year category

Hot water specialist Adveco is proud to announce it has been named a finalist in the 2022 HVR Awards. Adveco’s FUSION hybrid hot water system has been named a finalist in the Heat Pump Product of the Year category. Adveco’s AD Water Heater range has been selected for the HVR 2021 Commercial Heating Product of the Year category.

The Heating & Ventilation Review (HVR) Awards champion innovation, excellence and achievement across the heating and ventilation industry.

Greg Brushett, sales manager UK, Adveco, said, “We are extremely pleased to be once again named finalist in the 2022 HVR Awards, illustrating our continuous innovation of products designed to support the provision of commercial hot water.  Both of these products are perfect examples of Adveco leading the charge for low emission and more cost-effective responses to the delivery of business-critical hot water demands. Whether working on a new building or refurbishing legacy building stock,  for any organisation struggling to understand how it can better support the call to meet net zero by 2050 Adveco leads the way with practical answers today.”

Adveco’s FUSION FPH-S hybrid hot water system provides a range of low carbon, all-electric ASHP-based packaged hybrid hot water applications. The complexity and typical requirements of bespoke hybrid systems for commercial applications can make the integration of heat pumps in DHW systems more expensive and complex to install compared to traditional gas-fired alternatives. FUSION removes this complexity with its pre-sized options which harness Adveco’s FPi32 Air Source Heat Pumps with a compact, high-pressure ATSH calorifier with electric immersion. With dedicated controls and metering, FUSION provides a complete, low-carbon hot water system for a wide range of commercial end uses.

The Adveco FPi32 provides the system with a compact monobloc-designed air-to-water heat pump providing preheated hot water at a working temperature of 50°C. The FPi32 range leverages R32 refrigerant to enhance year-round efficiency (COP as high as 5.23) while reducing the global warming potential (GWP), thereby lowing environmental impact. For a project that has to drive sustainability within the building but also meet pressure requirements greater than six bar, then the FUSION is by far the most efficient and cost-effective choice.

The Adveco AD offers a range of compact commercial semi-instantaneous gas condensing water heaters composed of four models, from 70 to 280 kW. Conceived for high-demand semi-instantaneous hot water applications, Adveco AD’s patented space-saving design makes it equally applicable to both new projects or renovation work where a lack of space would traditionally stall or quickly drive up costs of a project. The perfect all-rounder, especially in soft and softened commercial hot water applications, exceptional operational responsiveness and highly effective performance means AD can also be deployed in order to supply peak demands and redundancy for commercial buildings with an existing gas connection and large-scale ASHP to water systems.

The HVR Awards will be announced on September 29th 2022.


AdvecoAdveco is committed to helping companies become net zero through efficient commercial heating and hot water systems.

Discuss carbon reduction in your next project by calling 01252 551 540 or visit the contact page.

Public Sector Funding for Decarbonisation

The government has launched its latest phase of public sector funding for decarbonisation, dedicating up to £635m for building upgrades to improve energy efficiency and install a range of clean technologies through schools, hospitals, and other public buildings.

Forming part of a wider £2.5bn programme, Phase 3 of the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme is providing £1.425 billion of grant funding over the financial years 2022-2023 to 2024-2025. The funding aims to support the government’s goal of reducing emissions from public sector buildings by 75 per cent by 2037, compared to 2017 levels, as set out in the Net Zero and Heat and Buildings strategies.

As the government looks to tackle soaring energy costs, it is intended that the funding will support a wider reduction in energy bills, to the tune of up to £650m a year over the next 15 years. As we have outlined, reducing emissions and energy costs do not necessarily go hand in hand, especially if working with heat pumps to supply hot water.

According to The Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) 734 grants had been awarded to public sector organisations across England to date, with phase one of the scheme supporting up to 30,000 jobs in the clean heating and energy efficiency sectors.

Applications for public sector funding for decarbonisation open from September and the government has issued guidance on how public bodies can apply for the latest wave of funding to be delivered on behalf of the government by Salix Finance, which also provides financing packages to help public sector bodies undertake energy-saving projects.

Salix Finance chief executive, Annie Shepperd, has urged public sector organisations across the country to move quickly to curb their energy use ahead of the significant increases in energy costs that are widely expected this winter.

“There is no time like the present to push forward with the decarbonisation agenda as our country must meet its ambitious targets to reduce our carbon footprint and reduce our consumption of very costly energy,” she said. “This vital work is driving down our carbon footprint and making these buildings better places for people to work in and for the public to use.”

Business and Energy Minister Lord Callanan said, “By helping even more public sector bodies ditch costly fossil fuels, we are taking an important step towards a more sustainable future while driving economic growth across the country and continuing to support tens of thousands of jobs.”  He also claimed that the scheme was already delivering upgrades to “hundreds of public buildings across England, making them cheaper to run and saving taxpayers millions of pounds each year”.

While such claims relating to public sector funding for decarbonisation should be appropriate to new build structures, upgrading existing buildings is a far more complex activity than these statements suggest. The focus on decarbonisation to address climate change is the only clear guaranteed deliverable at this time with the technology being promoted, which is predominantly heat pumps. Further work needs to be done by the government to push other technology opportunities, such as solar systems and especially solar thermal for water heating which has become an increasingly cost-effective and proven approach and hydrogen blend in the grid if cost savings are to be factored into the argument for embracing green initiatives at a commercial grade.


AdvecoAdveco is committed to helping companies become net zero through efficient commercial heating and hot water systems.

Discuss carbon reduction in your next project by calling 01252 551 540 or visit the contact page.

Heat Pumps – The Cost Of Reducing Emissions

With the government strongly advocating the use of heat pumps as a method of delivering net zero targets for commercial properties, we have noticed the trend for broad statements implying that while cutting emissions, heat pumps also reduce the energy costs for a building. It’s just not that simple argues Adveco’s UK sales manager Greg Brushett. So what is the cost of reducing emissions?

We strongly support the advantages of heat pumps as part of an all-electric or hybrid domestic hot water (DHW) system to achieve carbon savings. With DHW equating to as much as 20% of the total energy demand for domestic buildings and anywhere from 10-70% for commercial properties, it is important to clarify how heat pumps are being employed in a building’s system.

With a gas-fired system, you can achieve a safe DHW storage temperature without a significant impact on the overall efficiency but with a heat pump you need to either force the compressor to work very hard, which will reduce the Coefficient of Performance (COP) or, in a lot of cases, use the heat pump to partially heat the hot water and then use an immersion heater  – which has a COP of just 1.0 and therefore higher energy costs – to do the remaining work. If you are willing to accept this extra cost, working flow temperatures of 50- 55°C from the heat pump to an electric or hybrid DHW system are more than achievable year-round in the UK, and emissions will be dramatically reduced.

However, broad statements such as “heat pumps reduce costs” or “gas boilers remain more economic to run than heat pumps” are inherently misleading.

A heat pump can supply a properly insulated building’s heating system completely, and if designed well enough, can achieve a COP of 3.0, or slightly more, giving a similar yearly cost (within 10%) to that of a gas-fired heating system This would also be more attainable with the recent change in gas and electricity prices.

The same is not true of a hot water system. Following initial modelling and analysing reports from live systems a hot water hybrid system that achieves 50°C with an overall COP of 2.76 and uses an immersion heater to top up to 60°C has an overall efficiency of 2.4 based on the weighted average. Using these results, the running costs of the system are seen to be significantly higher than a gas system. However, the argument does demonstrate that incorporating heat pumps into an electric-only DHW system shows considerable savings over a COP of 1.0. Partnering this with other technologies such as solar thermal will only increase the benefits.

Benefits or efficiency?

Making the right choice between heat pump or gas depends on what an organisation is intending – whether seeking active emission reduction now, or, if already on gas, securing cost-saving operation until sustainable technology further matures, and costs fall.

Heat pumps can give incredible carbon emission savings for existing buildings, but as a way to reduce energy costs, replacing a gas-fired boiler/water heater with a heat pump doesn’t always add up. Commercial properties have unique demands, especially for DHW, making better application design and installation all the more important when it comes to specifying the right technology. Be wary of claims being made regarding the application of heat pumps, especially for the provision of DHW when it comes to calculating the cost of reducing emissions.

The Path to Decarbonising UK Cities

At the time of publication of the 1.5°C Plan, the UK’s ambition was to achieve an 80% reduction in emissions by 2050. Since then, both national and local climate ambition has increased in terms of decarbonising UK cities to lead reduction.

At a national level, the UK has committed to reach a 68% reduction in emissions by 2030 (relative to 1990 levels) and to reach net zero emissions by 2050. For London, the quoted aim is to commit to moving that net zero target from 2050 to 2030.

Successfully decarbonising UK cities before 2050 could follow several potential pathways, with London defining likely routes to achieving net zero early.

Two scenarios, high electrification, and high hydrogen are closest to current UK-wide targets, with a target 68% reduction in emissions by 2030 relative to 1990 levels. High electrification favours electrification of heat and transport, whilst high hydrogen assumes that hydrogen is available at scale in the long term. With a commitment to a more ambitious retrofit programme, these scenarios represent the maximum level of residual emissions considered to be still compatible with a 2030 Net Zero target.

High electrification and high hydrogen slightly exceed national targets, with high electrification modelled to decarbonise faster (27% residual emissions in 2030) due to the reliance of high hydrogen converting the gas grid which happens after 2030 (30% residual emissions in 2030). The high hydrogen scenario is the most optimistic about the role that hydrogen will play in that it assumes there will be a conversion of the existing gas grid to hydrogen in the post-2030 period. Conversion in that scenario begins in the early-to-mid-2030s, with completion by 2045, and total demand reaching 26 TWh/year in 2050 (compared to the current demand of close to 60 TWh/year natural gas). Both scenarios only reach 10% emissions in the early 2040s.

Accelerating the process of decarbonising UK cities successfully requires local authorities, the private sector and public bodies to all engage in a proactive role in driving the transition to net zero. These scenarios are therefore further refined under ‘no constraints’ or ‘accelerated green’ delivery.

With no constraint over the short timeframe from costs or local influence to implement challenging policies, such as early scrappage of boilers and vehicles, a significantly accelerated decarbonisation pathway is opened to meet the minimum achievable residual emissions by 2030. Due to the pace of decarbonisation required, technology options will necessarily be limited to those that are currently available or will certainly be available by the late 2020s, with a high reliance on widespread electrification. Modelling shows that 14% residual emissions (relative to 1990 levels) are achieved by 2030, falling to 10% shortly after, in 2033 when there are no constraints. This is considered the maximum level of emissions reduction possible by 2030 (minimum residual emissions) and relies on the deployment of very ambitious levels of behaviour change toward electrification of heat and transport, supported by significant supportive policy at the national and regional levels.

The accelerated green scenario represents an intermediate option which aims to reach the lowest possible residual emissions by 2030 without boiler and vehicle scrappage. The city would decarbonise as rapidly as possible while leaving long-term technology options open. This would mean allowing some heating systems to remain connected to a blended (hydrogen and biomethane) gas grid and a moderate share of pure hydrogen in selected applications.

Without requiring widescale scrappage, the accelerated green approach reaches 22% residual emissions by 2030 and achieves 10% residual emissions in the late 2030s, four years later than the unconstrained approach.

In all scenarios, most remaining emissions in 2030 come from Buildings (40-50%, depending on the scenario) and Transport (38-40%).  Under the published 1.5°C Plan all four scenarios decarbonised less rapidly, such that around 40% of emissions would still remain in 2030.

All scenarios assume varying degrees of hydrogen use. The current technological immaturity of hydrogen production and the need to deploy the Hydrogen that is available to strategically important sectors represents a significant risk factor in the high hydrogen scenario, both in terms of the uncertainty of availability, emissions intensity, and future costs. In all scenarios hydrogen therefore only plays a small but strategic role in meeting the net zero by 2030 target.

Without constraints, early action on decarbonising UK cities ultimately offers the lowest cost pathway by 2060 with the added benefit of lower ongoing fuel costs than in other scenarios. But without the full support of all key players, expectations are likely to fall in favour of the lowest cost and least disruptive scenario presented.

Without carbon costs, high hydrogen is the lowest cost scenario, largely due to lower technology costs associated with gas boilers (H2 or biomethane) compared to heat pumps. Despite the lower CAPEX costs in the high hydrogen scenario, the perceived higher fuel costs expected to heat a building using a hydrogen boiler over a heat pump, mean that the cumulative costs for high hydrogen will eventually increase above the other scenarios. But familiar boiler/water heater technology, less installation disruption and the potential for future capping of costs on green hydrogen continue to drive the positive outlook for the technology as a means of achieving early success in decarbonising UK cities.

 

Source: Element Energy Report, 2022 – Analysis of a Net Zero 2030 Target for Greater London