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What can I choose in the calculator?

The calculator lets you choose the share of total centralised heat demand covered by Centralised Heat Pumps in Switzerland in the selected year (2035 or 2050).

Centralised Heat Pump



  • Impact
  • Definition
  • Constraints
  • Assumptions

IMPACT – What are the impacts of Centralised Heat Pumps?

In Switzerland, increasing the share of Centralised Heat Pumps will have the following impacts:

Energy system

image Reduce final energy demand.

image Increase total electricity consumption.

image Reduce total heating oil and natural gas consumption.

image Likely to raise pressure on the grid by increasing peak electricity demand.

image Likely to increase energy independence by reducing fossil imports.

Environment & Climate

image Very likely to reduce global CO2 emissions.

image The refrigerants used in heat pumps often have high global warming potentials.

Society & Economy

image Likely to increase the cost of the energy transition as it requires deployment of district heating networks and heat pump technologies.

image May improve balance of payments by substituting domestic electricity for fossil imports.

image May reduce Confederation income from the tax on mineral oil under the current taxation system.


DEFINITION - What is a Centralised Heat Pump?

A heat pump is a device that draws heat from the environment and delivers it to a heated space at a higher temperature. The device is most usually driven using electricity but absorption heat pumps driven by a heat source are also available.

Heat pumps can draw heat from the outside air (air source) or using a heat transfer loop that draws heat from the ground (ground source) or a body of water (water source).

The air source heat pumps lose efficiency at low external temperature. In contrast, ground and water source heat pumps operate efficiently year round, because the temperature of the heat source remains more or less constant, but are more expensive to install.

Centralised heat pump plants would be coupled to a district heating network. Given their larger size and typically higher utilisation factor than small, decentralised heat pumps, a broader range of heat source options and plant configurations can be envisaged and the plants will typically achieve higher COPs.

CONSTRAINTS - What are the key barriers facing Centralised Heat Pumps deployment?

• Requires district heating infrastructure (network) which can be capital intensive to deploy, particularly as a retrofit.

• Currently low energy prices make the economics of such an integrated energy system quite challenging without significant policy drivers.

• District heating systems require higher operating water temperatures, which is not optimal for heat pumps.

ASSUMPTIONS – What are the assumptions considered in the calculator?

Next tables contain the assumptions that have been introduced in the Centralized heat pump model of the calculator.

2011 2035 2050
3 4 4.5
CO2-eq. emissions [kgCO2-eq./kWhth] They depend on the electricity production.
Deposited waste [UBP/kWhth]
Specific investment [CHF2010/kWth] 1465
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c_hp_more.txt · Last modified: 2019/10/22 09:17 (external edit)