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Innovative technology and design consultancy Cambridge Design Partnership today announced it has joined forces with Heatrae Sadia, the UK’s largest manufacturer of electric water heating products, to develop a unique low carbon system which intelligently stores heat energy.

Four million homes in the UK are not connected to mains gas, with many relying on expensive, higher carbon alternatives. While these households would benefit from fuel savings and reduced carbon emissions by switching to low carbon heat technologies such as heat pumps, increased electricity demand will put a significant strain on the national grid.

Last year, the UK’s Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) launched the Advanced Heat Competition. This was a UK initiative for manufacturers to develop system solutions which enable efficient storage of energy for use at peak times. Cambridge Design Partnership and Heatrae Sadia successfully proposed a unique system concept, which they are now developing, backed by funding from DECC.

On a global scale, energy efficiency and carbon reduction have become pressing concerns and are generating increased focus on new technologies to deliver solutions. While many reduced carbon technologies already exist such as heat pumps, wind power, solar PV and solar thermal, there has been less focus on how to link these disparate technologies together into an efficient system that delivers real user benefits.

Cambridge Design Partnership and Heatrae Sadia are developing a solution that integrates these new technologies effectively, to provide a system that provides an efficient method of delivering heat when it is required. The project will explore new methods of storing heat, in a product that is compact, scaleable and easy to install – as well as delivering direct cost benefits to the households.

Field trials of the systems are expected by the end of March 2014, demonstrating the efficacy of the concept in real user scenarios.

James Baker, Partner and Senior Engineer at Cambridge Design Partnership commented, “We are delighted to have teamed up with Heatrae Sadia to develop an innovative system that delivers real benefits. We had a timely vision of how we could integrate technology with market need and produce a novel new concept for the industry. The system will pull together many of the low carbon technologies that are becoming popular, and enable better efficiencies through integration at system level”.

Alan Clarke, Technical Support Manager at Heatrae Sadia said “As the UK’s largest manufacturer of electric water heating products we felt we had the necessary experience and expertise to successfully meet the brief set by DECC. Working alongside Cambridge Design Partnership, we have developed an original concept in thermal storage, which can be installed in new build and easily retrofit”.

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