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Maija K. Mattinen, Ari Nissinen, Sampsa Hyysalo, and Jouni K. Juntunen

Energy Use and Greenhouse Gas Emissions of Air-Source Heat Pump and Innovative Ground-Source Air Heat Pump in Cold Climate

Available here: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/jiec.12166/abstract

ABSTRACT

This article compares climate impacts of two heat-pump systems for domestic heating, that is, energy consumption for space heating of a residential building. Using a life cycle approach, the study compared the energy use and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of direct electric heating, a conventional air-source heat pump, and a novel ground-source air heat pump innovated by a citizen user, to assess whether such user innovation holds benefit. The energy use of the heat pumps was modeled at six temperature intervals based on duration curves of outdoor temperature. Additionally, two heat pump end-of-life scenarios were analyzed. Probabilistic uncertainty analysis was applied using a Monte Carlo simulation. The results indicated that, in ideal conditions, that is, assuming perfect air mixing, the conventional air-source heat pump’s emissions were over 40% lower and the ground-air heat pump’s emissions over 70% lower than in the case of direct electric heating. Although proper handling of the refrigerant is important, total leakage from the retirement of the heat-pump appliance would increase GHG emissions by just 10%. According to the sensitivity analysis, the most influential input parameters are the emission factor related to electricity and the amount of electricity used for heating.

Keywords: carbon footprint, greenhouse gas emissions, heat pump, industrial ecology, refrigerant, sensitivity analysis

Mattinen, M., Nissinen, A., Hyysalo, S., Juntunen J.K. (2014), Energy Use and Greenhouse Gas Emissions of Air-Source Heat Pump and Innovative Ground-Source Air Heat Pump in Cold Climate, Journal of Industrial Ecology. doi: 10.1111/jiec.12166