Sustainable Technologies

At Eu-Eco technologies our goal is to work closely with the client to procure install and maintain all of your renewables. We believe in honesty and we will only engage with the correct technologies for your needs.

Our aim is to build a lasting partnership ultimately leading to your engagement with Eu-Eco technologies costing you nothing!!! Yes your cost, ultimately, will be nothing as the service we provide and the technologies we install WILL completely pay back your investment.

Your quest for sustainability and the building of your carbon plan (your low carbon future) will undoubtedly mean at some point you may need to turn to other sustainable technologies and incorporate them into the design and operation of your building to maximise your investment.

We at Eu-Eco will guide you through that process providing honest, factual and achievable savings and reductions in your carbon footprint.
We will advise you of the pros and cons of each technology in your working environment. With that in mind the following is a list of technologies we can install in tandem with Prometheus.

Ground Source Heat Pumps

Ground source heat pumps work by extracting solar temperatures from the soil. The ground will hold a near constant temperature of between 10 and 16 degrees C; this is dependent upon latitude, in the top three metres of soil/ sub soil. At a depth greater than 15 Metres a constant 10 degrees is generally maintained. If you think of a ground source heat pump as a sort of refrigerator in that surplus heat is extracted and expelled the same principle works in a Ground source heat pump. Typically they can produce about 4 kW for every 1kW of power consumed and this is sometimes expressed as 300 – 400% efficient or a coefficient performance of 3-4.

Advantages

  • Units can be dual purpose heating in winter and cooling in summer but generally this is not used in the UK
  • Geothermal heat pumps although more expensive in terms of initial capital outlay can offer the greatest savings long term
  • They are mostly low maintenance but don’t get caught out with the long terms costs.
  • Highly reliable type of heating even though the technology is relatively new.
  • They pose the best solution for highly insulated buildings where thermal load is not great. They work well with under floor heating.

Disadvantages

  • Initial installation cost is very prohibitive but can be more economical in a new build where boreholes can be incorporated into the building footprint. This usually makes retro fitting an existing building extremely uneconomic.
  • Controls for the systems are not always user friendly particularly when the system is linked into your BMS system.
  • Heat pumps run for longer hours than traditional boiler systems
  • As mentioned don’t get caught out with the long term costs
  • When laying plastic pipework in the ground be careful that you remember exactly where they are so that if you dig up areas in the future you do not accidentally dig up your pipework

Photovoltaic Panels

Photovoltaic or PV has been around for a number of years but have always proved to be inefficient and therefore payback periods used to be phenomenal. This always made the rational for purchase and installation one only for the altruist however today’s modern panels tied in with possible feed in tariffs back from the government have made payback periods as low as 9 years.

Advantages

  • No moving parts or maintenance is required to the panels however the inverters will need to be maintained and will probably have a life span of between 5 to 10 years.
  • Solar power is produced without any emissions of greenhouse gases and is therefore considered a high yield carbon reduction system.
  • Little space is needed especially in the plant room.
  • It is a reliable technology if somewhat inefficient.
  • They are silent in operation.
  • Solar energy is available to all and will work in most environments as long as a clear south facing aspect is available.
  • Some companies will enter into agreements to supply the capital cost for installation providing they get the feed in tariff and you buy the electricity at a reduced rate.
  • They are perfect for very remote applications where standard infrastructure for electricity is poor.

Disadvantages

  • Initial cost of installation and purchase of panels is high compared to other technologies.
  • Efficiencies of the panels (10% to 20%) are still quite low, but improving.
  • The production is dependent upon the quality and quantity of light available.
  • The electricity is only generated during daylight hours so much less electricity is produced during the winter when peak demand is.
  • Not suitable for all organisations and is generally dependent upon the building having a south facing aspect.
  • In the UK the peak demand for electricity does not match the peak production i.e. we produce less in winter when we need more production because of the short days.

Solar Thermal Panels

Solar thermal panels are used to heat or preheat water to a point where it can be used for domestic hand wash or boosted for wider applications. Often confused with PV solar thermal is completely different to PV in that unlike PV there is no generation of electricity. Solar Thermal systems in this country are generally “active” (requiring pumps and cylinders) and Indirect or closed loop systems use a heat exchanger that separates the potable water from the fluid, known as the “heat-transfer fluid” (HTF), this circulates through the collectors. The two most common HTFs are water and an antifreeze/water mix that typically uses non-toxic propylene glycol systems. The better systems are designed to “drain back” when the pump stops working this protects the system from frost and prevents excessive degradation of the glycol.

Advantages

  • Solar energy is available to all and free if you factor out the initial cost.
  • A properly designed system can save you as much as 60% to 70% of your hot water energy bills.
  • Most systems can be made to pay back within ten years with RHI’s.
  • Sometimes grants are available to cover the cost of the installation and certainly if not a grant then an interest free loan. A good source is “Salix” funding.
  • Hot water available all year round although in winter this may need to be boosted more than in summer.
  • Solar energy has a positive effect on the environment and is safe to use.
  • Relatively low maintenance.
  • Pumped systems can have the advantage of minimising heat losses on the system.
  • Can massively cut your carbon footprint.

Disadvantages

  • The initial cost may be high but there is a good return after investment payback periods.
  • Requires space with the correct orientation towards the sun.
  • Its performance is dependent upon the weather; on cloudy days the performance is not likely to be high.
  • It is not suitable for all properties and generally a southern facing aspect is required.
  • An auxiliary heat source is required for the system when it cannot perform due to weather conditions.
  • Can adversely affect the appearance of the building.
  • If the system is not pumped there could be a danger of the system freezing in winter.

Air Source Heat Pumps

Air source heat pumps are very similar to ground source heat pumps in principle but are generally marginally less efficient in their use Instead of drawing heat from ambient soil temperatures Air source heat pumps draw heat from the external air.
There are two main types of system:

  • An air-to-water system which distributes heat via your wet central heating system. Heat pumps in these systems work much more efficiently at a lower temperature than a standard boiler system would. This means they are more suitable for under floor heating systems or larger radiators, which give out heat at lower temperatures over longer periods of time.
  • An air-to-air system: This produces warmed air which is circulated by fans to heat your home or workplace. They are unlikely to provide you with hot water as well.

Advantages

More or less the same as Ground source heat pumps:

  • Able to claim UK governments RHI (Renewable Heat Incentive)
  • They do not require much maintenance especially the smaller more domestic systems.
  • Easier to install than their big brother the ground source heat pump.

Disadvantages

  • Some of the earlier systems were prone to the external units freezing up on regular occasions.
  • They work best in well insulated homes where thermal gain can be quicker from the relatively low loads produced.
  • It is a better solution for replacing existing electrical heating systems rather than gas or coal fired.
  • Cost of retrofitting can be higher and is much more efficient when considered as part of a new build.
  • If you are using the system to provide hot water as well you could find this system less economic than traditional boilers.

Wind Generation

Wind generating in most circumstances is far more difficult to work in an urban environment. Mostly speaking areas which benefit from wind generation are on exposed sites where the wind is of a sufficient volume and consistent in its strength
to merit the investment of a wind turbine. Small scale turbines do work but in terms of generation hardly ever merit the financial outlay needed.
The location of your wind turbines is generally calculated by specialists taking into account prevailing winds and consistency of those winds. To be effective they need to be at least 30 feet from the ground and at least 300 feet away from obstructions in any direction.
Generally wind only works on a large scale with industrial sized turbines.
Spin speed: Most turbines will turn at around 3 to 5 mph but generally will not generate at this speed. As the revolutions and wind speed increases the unit will start to generate this will generally happen at somewhere between 8 to 12 mph.
Many people who live in the vicinity of large scale turbines often complain of the noise of the turbines which could be quite incessant.

Advantages

  • Proven technology which in the right situation works perfectly well.
  • Can qualify for the UK governments Feed in Tariff for micro generation it is also eligible under the governments “Green Deal”.
  • Can cut your carbon footprint.
  • Spare or unused generation of electricity can be exported back onto the grid.

Disadvantages

  • Can look unsightly.
  • Takes up quite a large space.
  • Does not work effectively in built up areas.
  • If not installed properly can set up vibrations in the structure of the property.
  • Is not a consistent form of power as the wind does not blow all of the time.

Remember

Prometheus can work in tandem with one or more of the above technologies to improve the stability of your eco platform. We can advise you of the best way forward.