A new publication from heat transfer specialists, Alfa Laval, sets out to de-mystify the topic of District Heating (DH) by explaining the terminology, examining the history and setting out the prospects for its increased use in the UK.
Running to a compact 26 pages, the Alfa Laval Guide to District Heating reveals the surprising fact that the concept is not as cutting edge as we, perhaps, have been led to believe. In fact, the ancient Romans were using a very rudimentary form of DH 2000 years ago to heat their homes and public buildings. In other parts of the world, notably Russia and Scandinavia, DH is the norm rather than the exception. However, while Scandinavian cities such as Copenhagen have developed the technology to such a degree that more than 90% of homes are heated via DH networks, in the UK only about 1% of homes are connected to a suitable network.
The UK Government’s stated aim is to increase this ratio to 14% - or 8 million homes – in the future. The Guide spells out salient facts regarding UK energy usage and emissions against a background of dwindling fuel availability, rocketing energy prices and increasingly stringent legislation to curb carbon emissions.