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Could large heat pumps revolutionize how we warm our homes?

By District Energy posted 01-30-2024 18:32




Mannheim still generates most of its electricity and heat from coal, which is particularly harmful to the climate. Long term though, the city is planning to shift to a mix of geothermal energy and heat from both waste incineration and the river. The river heat pump started operating here in 2023 and is, according to MVV, currently the largest in Germany.

The Mannheim river heat pump essentially works like a conventional heat pump that uses heat from the air or the ground. In this case, it's just much bigger and the source is the river.

The river heat pump has a share of just 3% in the district heating network, but Hack said it's only the beginning.

"We want 50,000 households to be supplied with heat from river water," he explained. 

Two additional machines are already being planned. Water heat pumps have also been commissioned or are planned in Berlin, Hamburg, Stuttgart and Rosenheim, in Bavaria.

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