Noting compatibility with leading heat pumps from Vaillant, Daikin, Kensa and Samsung, is Sunamp, a thermal storage company based in Scotland. Last month, Sunamp announced the rollout of its 4th generation compact thermal batteries for what the company describes as “instant, fast flowing hot water in homes.”
Thermino e replaces direct cylinders that are primarily electrically heated, and Thermino i replaces indirect hot water tanks with a backup immersion heater. Models optimized for solar photovoltaics (PV) self-consumption with combi boilers, system boilers, and heat pumps are available.
Sunamp designs and manufactures compact heat batteries based on its patented Plentigrade® high-performance thermal storage technology platform. The new Thermino range contains a new and improved Plentigrade P58 phase change material (PCM) formulation with greater energy density to deliver even more hot water from thermal batteries that are up to four times smaller than equivalent hot water cylinders.
“The new Thermino range is super-compact, easy to install and has a key role to play in the electrification of heat,” said Andrew Bissell, CEO at Sunamp. “To tackle climate change, we need to change how we heat our buildings and move away from burning fossil fuels. Thermino is the perfect partner and an enabler for renewable energy systems, especially where space in the home is at a premium, and on a fully installed basis beats the cost base of the hot water cylinders it displaces. Despite challenges with global supply chain, due to intensive innovation the Thermino range is the same size and the same price as our third-generation product, with improved performance giving up to 12% more hot water capacity.”
The company claims Thermino thermal storage is easy to install, requires no mandatory routine maintenance, helps to overcome the intermittency issues of renewable energy, and lowers carbon emissions. Thermino heat batteries charge by air source heat pumps, ground source heat pumps, photovoltaics (PV), grid electricity, and boilers. The products have been further optimized for use with heat pumps, including significantly reduced pressure drops (up to 70 percent lower).
“Our analysis based on today’s fuel costs have shown that householders can expect to save as much as 1000kWh per year, equivalent to cutting electricity bills by £250 a year at today’s prices by using a Thermino e instead of traditional direct hot water cylinder,” Bissell also explained. “Most importantly, Thermino massively expands the range of households which can have a heat pump installed as it overcomes the problem of where to fit the hot water tank. A Thermino will fit in a much smaller space.”
Sunamp is active in 17 countries worldwide and has sold over 15,000 heat batteries into the European residential market, counting some of the UK’s leading housing associations among its customers.
As a further mark of the company’s sustainability credentials, Sunamp is the only heat battery manufacturer in the world to be awarded A Grade RAL certification, the independent quality mark, and the only global standard for phase change material (PCM) and PCM products. The award confirms performance with no noticeable degradation to 10,000 cycles – the equivalent of over 13 years of daily use at two cycles per day of hot water application. Sunamp’s testing has confirmed performance to over 40,000 cycles, equivalent to 55 years of everyday use.
According to the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), “Heat pump water heaters (HPWH) are a game-changing technology that can eliminate climate and air pollution from water heating in buildings. And if that isn’t enough, HPWHs have a less well-known added benefit: they can double as clean-energy batteries by essentially storing emissions-free solar energy to use during times when the sun isn’t shining.”
The California Public Utilities Commission confirmed in a report that “heat pump water heaters can provide effective, local energy storage to balance the grid. California has ambitious goals to deploy energy storage to harness plentiful but variable solar energy, and electric heat pump water heaters can help.”
“Currently, California’s residential and commercial buildings consume more gas than—and produce seven times as much air pollution as—power plants in the state,” the NRDC article continued. “Eliminating gas use in buildings is critical to meeting clean air and climate goals. Switching from gas-fired furnaces and water heaters to efficient electric heat pump technology—already the lowest-cost path to zero-emissions buildings—is only more attractive when one considers HPWH energy storage benefits.”