A resident of the Cornish village of Stithians has had their ground source heat pump (GSHP) connected to an ambient heat network under the street, in what is said be a “world first” in-road retrofit of its kind.
Retrospectively installed in a public highway, the shared ground array will draw energy from below the street, creating an in-road GSHP network.
The GSHP network in Collins Parc, Stithians, consists of 42 boreholes, drilled to an average depth of 106m and its infrastructure has been designed to accommodate future connections.
There will be no need for a central plant and consumers can still change their energy provider at will.
The retrofit forms part of the Heat the Streets project run by Kensa Utilities, part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
“It’s fantastic to have the first heat pump up and running on this landmark project which provides a blueprint for the decarbonisation of heating in the UK. Our model replicates the gas network with a pipe in the ground, a flat rate standing charge to consumers and a little white box in the house,” said Wouter Thijssen, managing director of Kensa Utilities.
“We believe Stithians is the first UK town to convert to the 21st-century equivalent: networked heat pumps. Residents will have access to a network that will provide cheaper and cleaner heat for 100 years to come.”