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INdustrial Thermal Energy Reuse Enabled by Sorption heaTpumps

Project description

Efficient heat pumps for large-scale heating and cooling

To boost the energy efficiency of buildings, the EU has created a legislative framework that includes the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive. Heat pumps are one of the most promising technologies when it comes to reducing building energy consumption and complying with this new set of directives. Despite their potential, heat pumps have not yet been deployed at scale and have only served as auxiliary units. The EU-funded INTEREST project will study hybrid heat pumps – systems that combine adsorption and compression. In particular, it will screen potential thermo-chemical sorbents with high energy density and model hybrid heat pump operation. Finally, it will test a pair of resorption reactors that can operate over 1 000 cycles without losing reactivity. These will be integrated with compression heat pumps.


This work will further strengthen R&D skills of the applicant, especially considering the development of efficient sorption heat pump systems, extend his technical and nontechnical network, increase his knowledge regarding market demands and strategies and provide new career perspectives.
The project aims at accelerating development and application of hybrid resorption heat pump for more energy efficient use of heat.
A recast of European Performance of Buildings Directive indicated that higher energy efficiency is required for heating and cooling in building and industrial sector. Heat pumps can provide such efficient use, among which sorption heat pump could be a promising candidate. Due to various sorption working pairs, the heat with a wide temperature range could be recovered which almost saves 50% energy through desorption and sorption process compared to direct heating systems. So far, this technology has not been commercially realized in large-scale application or served as an auxiliary application.
The project objectives are elaborated as follows:
1. Screen potential thermo-chemical sorbents with higher energy density through comprehensive review, develop and test the promising composite materials.
2. Develop a transient model for hybrid resorption heat pumps.
3. Design, construct and test a pair of resorption reactors that can operate over 1000+ cycles without noticeable loss of reactivity, and to be integrated with compressor for completing resorption system.
4. Conduct techno-economic analysis of hybrid heat pump for real industrial application.
This proposal combines the applicant’s expertise concerning heat/mass transfer and reaction kinetics of sorbents with thermal engineering skills & experience of Dr. Carlos Infante Ferreira at TUDelft to achieve the high energy efficient sorption heat pump. These synergies will deliver a successful project as measured by well-defined deliverables, both in terms of hardware development and disseminated knowledge.


Net EU contribution
€ 187 572,48
Stevinweg 1
2628 CN Delft

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West-Nederland Zuid-Holland Delft en Westland
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Other funding
€ 0,00