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How a heat pump works

In principle the function of a heat pump is roughly the same like a fridge – but in reverse. While a fridgerator extracts the heat of its interior and discharges it to the outside, a heat pump draws heat out of the outside and discharges it as heating energy in the room. Heat pumps acquire their energy directly from nature, i.e. from the air, soil or water and pass it on to the heating system. Even in minus temperatures a heat pump can generate enough heat for heating or to warm water. Because of this, with a heat pump you heat particularly energy-efficiently and in an environmentally-aware way. Which heat source is the right one for you depends on the respective local circumstances, the individual location of the house and its energy requirements.


Energy from the air

Air is available in unlimited quantities and can be tapped easily – for this reason it is a particularly reliable energy source. The heat pump draws air via a fan and passes it to an evaporator or heat exchanger. The heat acquired by this process is used for space and water heating. The cooled air is discharged back into the surroundings.

A reversible heat pump can also cool by reversing the cycle – a wonderful function in hot summer months. In this case it works on precisely the same principle as a fridge. Whether space heating, cooling or domestic water heating, the air / water heat pumps of alpha innotec are available for every application and demand, for new build and for modernisation projects. Special sound insulation ensures that the heat pump operates extremely quietly.


Energy from the ground

The ground is an optimum supplier of heat because its temperature is always constant. In summer and in winter it is around 8-10 degrees. Ground source can be used by different systems: brine/water heat pump with borehole heat exchangers or with horizontal ground collectors.

Borehole heat exchangers (vertical ground collectors):

One or several boreholes are needed for a borehole heat exchanger system. The number and depth of the boreholes depends on the soil conditions and your energy requirements, which the heat pump has to provide for heating. The borehole heat exchangers are placed in the ground up to a depth of 100 metres. The brine circulating in the pipe absorbs the heat in the ground and it is pumped to the heat pump then.

Horizontal ground collectors:

The ground heat collectors are laid in the ground horizontally and in loops at an average depth of one metre. A mixture of water and environmentally friendly antifreeze absorbs the ground heat and passes it on to the heat pump via a heat exchanger.


Energy from water

Groundwater has a constant temperature the whole year round. It is approx. 7 - 12 degrees, depending on the region, time of year and depth. There are virtually no seasonal fluctuations.This means that groundwater is an ideal energy source for a heat pump.

In order to use the groundwater, two wells have to be drilled on your land plot: a supply well and a discharge well. The warm groundwater is drawn from the supply well and is transported to the heat exchanger of the heat pump. There the energy is drawn from the water. The cooled water is fed back into the ground, fully uncontaminated, through the discharge well.

In order for the groundwater to be used, the quality of the water in the place you live must satisfy certain requirements and sufficient quantities must be available. A groundwater analysis is carried out in advance to ensure the site fulfils the requirements.