Having seen record demand for heat pumps as a result of its ‘multi-technology strategy’, Vaillant Industrial UK
is to extend its UK manufacturing facility in Belper, Derbyshire, to manufacture heat pumps alongside its UK range of high-efficiency boilers from 2022.
The company is one of only a few heating appliance manufacturers to produce both gas boilers and heat pumps in the UK, having invested in significant R&D into heat pumps over the last decade. A heat pump is a device that transfers heat from a source (such as the heat of the soil in the garden) to another location (like the hot water system of a house).
Vaillant believes that no one technology will address the ‘decarbonisation challenge’, and that a combination of hydrogen gas boilers, heat pumps and hybrid systems — along with controls and internet connected solutions — will be key to meeting the Government’s targets.
The company currently manufactures around half a million natural gas and liquified petroleum gas (LPG) appliances for the UK market at its Belper plant. From 2022, the capacity will be increased to include the company’s AroTherm-plus air-to-water heat pump. It uses the natural refrigerant R290 and can achieve flow temperatures of up to 75°C.
Vaillant says this diversification in the market brings new opportunities as well as challenges for installers and consumers and believes there must be an urgent increase of support for installers in the industry to expand their skills to accommodate heat pumps if the Government’s target of 600,000 heat pumps sold per annum by 2028 is to be met.
Klaus Jesse, the managing director for Vaillant Group UK and Ireland, said: “As a leading heating manufacturer, we take our responsibility to support the decarbonisation challenge very seriously. Having been at the forefront of research and development of high-efficiency gas appliances as well as heat pumps, Vaillant is also investing heavily in future hydrogen and ‘green gas’ technology.
“There will not be one technology that singularly addresses the climate challenge, and it is important that both the Government and the heating industry recognise and educate the market on the benefits of each technology, based on the needs of the customer and the property.”
Business secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said: “With home heating contributing around a third of all UK emissions, we need to support people to replace their appliances with lower-carbon more-efficient technologies, such as heat pumps. Doing so will not only help the UK eliminate its contribution to climate change, but ensure our homes are warmer, more energy efficient and cheaper to run.”