Industrial renewable heating system based on 780 kW heat pump

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Israeli solar thermal specialist Tigi Solar announced it has been selected by the food industry enterprise Of Galil Ltd to install the country’s first-of-its-kind renewable heating system based on an industrial heat pump.

The heating system will be mainly used for washing and cleaning the production lines and floors twice a day. The feed water is tap water and the hot water is stored in two tanks of 70 m3 each.

“The client is currently using steam to heat the feed water for this application,” a spokesperson from Tigi Solar told pv magazine. “The steam generator is fed by Mazut, which is a low-quality heavy fuel oil. It will now be dismantled and help the client reduce operating costs and maintenance efforts.”

The industrial heat pump used for the project has an output of 780 kW and a coefficient of performance (COP) of 4.6. It measures 1.7 m² x 5.3 m² and has a weight of 6.6 tons. It uses existing ammonia chiller waste heat as the heat source, thereby improving the performance of the existing chiller, and can reportedly provide a hot water temperature of 65 C.

The heat from the heat source is transferred to the heat pump by a closed loop with an intermediate heat exchanger that allows control of the inlet temperature to the heat pump's cold side at about 17 C. A 5 m3 buffer tank helps to flatten occasional spikes and smooth the operation.

The tap water is also heated by a closed loop with an intermediate heat exchanger, to avoid scaling of the heat pump’s heat exchanger with Calcium carbonate deposition. There is also a redundant heat exchanger to allow periodical cleaning of the heat exchanger without stopping the normal operation.

“The heat pump is sized to heat the tap water from 15 C to 65 C at a flow rate of 14 m3/h,” the spokesperson said, adding that the company is also implementing machine learning for optimization of the generation cost based on energy usage patterns, varying cost of electricity, and use of thermal storage.

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