Building to building (or chain) – Is less flexible in design but has the advantage of fewer ‘Tee’ connections in the ground.
Branch – offers a flexible design, easy installation and is easy to extend at a later date.
District heating is centred on the concept of a site utilising one large heat source running very efficiently, rather than each building having separate smaller ones running less efficiently; the idea being to reduce overall CO2 emissions and save on running costs. The concept is very popular in geographical areas located off the mains gas grid and therefore making a large renewable heat source a great option. Whilst, many urban re-generation schemes are also considering district heating as a cost-effective, efficient solution.
A district heating project has a centralised heat source (such as Biomass or Biogas, Geothermal, or a boiler for wood or pellets) supplying heating water and / or domestic hot water to two or more separate buildings on the site. Mibec can offer advice on a range of biomass boilers, ground source, and air source heat pumps which can then be combined with a Mibec buffer tanks in the central plant location. The central heat source will then be connected to the various buildings in the scheme via an underground pipe network. Mibec offer a wide range of pre-insulated pipesfrom leading district heating pipe manufacturers like Rehau, Microflex, or Mibec DHP pipe (all of these are designed to maintain the water temperature when in transit hence avoiding heat losses to improve energy efficiency on the scheme).
District heating is a very popular choise in geographical areas located off the mains gas grid and therefore making a large renewable heat source a great option in terms of running costs compared to heating oil or LPG etc. District heating is therefore widely used in agricultural applications where typically there could be a combination of residential properties on the site, perhaps a few small business units, along with farm buildings that need heating for agricultural processes (e.g. drying gain or animal feed etc). District heating also lends itself well to projects such as social housing, first time buyer housing developments and holiday parks – often fairly compact buildings which would usually require a small boiler in each property. Having one centralised heat source makes a lot of sense from an energy efficiency point of view when you consider the project as a whole. This can be a great strategy for helping developers meet CO2 targets and saving the occupiers money on their heating bills.
These benefits are also coupled with the Renewable Heat Incentive giving the owner the opportunity to receive annual RHI payments.