24 June 2014

Heat pumps connected to the smart grid What is the potential, and why do we need it.


This paper describes the role that heat pumps can fulfill in and peak shaving and managing the load of electricity grids generated by renewable energy sources. Much R&D is already
being performed, but there is much more to explore in this field. This paper tries to give an overview of these developments. The current developments in smart grid projects are discussed, after which we investigate
the combination of thermal grids and electricity grids, where heat pumps are the linkage between those two. After that we elaborate on why and how heat pumps can be connected to a smart grid and the potential it can bring to flexibility of the electricity grid.
Consequently we follow with an insight in Annex 42 from the Heat Pump Program of the International Energy Agency (IEA), which is specifically organized around this topic and
currently running. That insight will also give an overview of projects that have to do with the subject. Finally this paper will provide some guidance of what should be developed to connect heat pumps into smart grids successfully and make the most use of its possibilities. There is no doubt this paper will be non-comprehensive and partially or sometimes even
incomplete, therefore all readers are encouraged to send in remarks, important projects we oversaw, or scientific developments in this field. Since we as the Operating Agent of Annex 42 are the authors of this paper, and will process al valuable input into the discussions with the participating countries; South Korea, The Netherlands, France, Denmark, The United Kingdom, United States of America, Germany, Austria and Switzerland.