Novel seawater heating and cooling demonstrated in Norway – Power Engineering International

Novel seawater heating and cooling demonstrated in Norway

Image credit: Pipelife

The Grilstad Marina in Trondheim has implemented a highly energy efficient seawater cooling and heating system.

With the system, which serves the approximately 134,000m2 of commercial space at Grilstad Marina, a pleasant indoor temperature can be maintain year-round.

The Grilstad Marina is set on an artificially built peninsula surrounded by fiord, from where the seawater is collected at a depth of 60m with a year-round temperature of about 8oC.

With heat pumps, heat is obtained from the seawater in winter, while in the summer the water is used for cooling.

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With the seawater power plant, which has now been running for a decade, substantial savings have emerged, with as much as 95% of the energy needs of the commercial area being produced by seawater.

“In some buildings, we have saved even 1.5 million kWh and in total, we have reduced the proportion of kilowatts purchased by three to four million in a period of five to six years,” says Rune Solberg, Energy Manager at Koteng Eiendom, the investor in Grilstad Marina’s commercial area, in a statement on the project.

The Norwegian coast is warmed by the Gulf Stream and many of the country’s large-scale properties are located close to the shore but the renewable energy provided by seawater currently is used to only a relatively small extent.

Arvid Engløkk, Project Manager at the Norwegian company QPS, which designed and supplied the seawater power plant and other infrastructure as a turnkey solution, says that seawater has potential when it comes to sustainable heating and cooling solutions.

“The higher the energy requirements of the premises are, the more economical seawater heating and cooling becomes. The greatest savings are made by commercial spaces and industrial areas that need extensive cooling, but seawater systems offer an economical solution for various types of buildings,” he asserts.

The Grilstad Marina was developed as a unique district and in addition to the commercial area includes 632 residential units covering 67,500m2.