05 July 2011

Economical heating and cooling systems for low energy houses

Introduction to IEA HPP Annex 32
Since the mid of the nineties low energy buildings with a significantly reduced energy consumption
down to ultra-low energy standard (typical space heating energy need of 15
kWh/(m2a)) or even net zero energy consumption (on an annual basis by an integration of
on-site renewable energy systems) have been realised.
These building concepts recently show strong market growth in different European countries.
Many governments address the spread of low energy buildings as a major strategy to reach
climate protection targets according to the Kyoto protocol. Heat pump markets are growing
in many countries as well.
Low energy buildings have significantly different load characteristics compared to conventional
existing buildings. This requires adapted system solutions to entirely use energyefficiency
potentials for the remaining energy needs.
Integrated heat pump solutions have favourable features for the use in low energy houses.
The main advantages are the potential for internal heat recovery and simultaneous operation
to cover different building needs at the same time as well as installation space and cost
benefits. This leads to a significantly improved system performance in an adequate capacity
range to reduce primary energy consumption and cut CO2-emissions and costs.
However, in many countries, no adequate system solutions are available on the market or
energy performance of available and newly-introduced low energy house technology is not
yet approved by field experience. Therefore, system development and field approval of functionality
and real-world operational performance of the systems are needed. These are the
main working areas of IEA HPP Annex 32.
Main objectives of IEA HPP Annex 32
The main objectives of the IEA HPP Annex 32 are the further development and field monitoring
of integrated heat pump systems for the use in low energy buildings, leading to the following
• To characterise the state-of-the-art in the different participating countries
• To assess and compare the energy performance of different system solutions for the
residential low energy house sector
• To develop and lab-test new system solutions of integrated heat pumps in the lowenergy-
house capacity range including the use of natural refrigerants
• To accomplished field tests of new developments and marketable systems and to document
best-practice examples
• To disseminate the results
Results of the IEA HPP Annex 32
The results of IEA HPP Annex 32 comprise:
• Overview of market system solutions of integrated heat pumps for low energy houses
• Design recommendations of the standard system solutions
• New system developments as prototypes including lab-test and simulation results
• Documentation of field monitoring results of new and marketable systems
• Dissemination of results by a website, workshop presentation and reports