Community Heat Pump Systems (PON 4614)

Due Date:  03/09/2021  (Round 1); 05/18/2021  (Round 2); 08/17/2021  (Round 3); 11/16/2021  (Round 4); 02/01/2022  (Round 5); 05/17/2022  (Round 6); 08/16/2022  (Round 7); 11/15/2022  (Round 8)


A community-style heat pump system will use a network of pipes to share heating water among a cluster of buildings, where the cluster of buildings will use that heating water to produce comfort space heating of occupied spaces.  The heating water could be centrally-produced as hot water via electric-driven heat pumps and used in the buildings via radiators for hydronic heating, or could be ambient-temperature water serving as a thermal source enabling electric-driven heat pumps located in each building.  The heating water could also be used for production of domestic hot water, and a chilled water piping network could also be included to serve the comfort space cooling needs of the cluster of buildings.

The solicitation will be competitive with multiple due dates and offers $15 million of funding to be allocated across multiple projects in four categories (all four of these categories can receive proposals at every due date):

A. Site-specific Scoping Studies
B. Site-specific Detailed Design Studies
C. Construction
D. Best Practices Guidebooks

In situations where a proposer has credible reason to believe that a community-style heat pump configuration will yield better value proposition than an individual building heat pump configuration, a scoping study would compare-and-contrast such two configurations so as to assess and quantify such expectation.  For example, if a campus has a central boiler with steam distribution loop piping and seeks to pivot to heat pump-based hydronic space heating, the compare/contrast analysis should address:
  • The individual building heat pump configuration: abandoning the campus distribution loop and pivoting each building to be thermally-islanded with its own heat pump system, versus
  • The community-style heat pump configuration style 1: pivoting the campus distribution loop to water at hot temperature produced by a centralized heat pump, and using the campus loop to feed hydronic radiators in each building, and/or versus
  • The community-style heat pump configuration style 2: pivoting the campus distribution loop to water being circulated at ambient temperature, in conjunction with heat pumps in each building that use the campus loop as their thermal source/sink.


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