NÄVBOL - The next generation heat pump systems in homes and premises

There is a strong pressure, from EU and nationally, to increase the energy efficiency of the built environment. Heat pumps can play an important role in accomplishing this. The largest potential for energy efficiency measures is present in the existing buildings as they will make up the majority of the buildings during the next 50 years.
Sketch showing how a ground source heat pump
Source: IVT Värmepumpar

The aim of this project was to describe the requirements for the next generation of heat pump systems when used in a retrofit installation or in a new building. The requirement specification has formed a basis for the development of a number of favourable system solutions. These solutions have been judged from economical, environmental and energy related perspectives. The project has been performed in two parallel investigations for offices and residential buildings, as user behaviour, loads, distribution systems, knowledge of end users and market situations are different for these two areas of application.

The study has tried to foresee the development over a 15-year period in the future. Different scenarios regarding climate, the end-users increasing demand for thermal comfort, future technological development, variations in internal loads, user behaviour and design of buildings  has been assessed in order to try to determine the future needs for heating, cooling and domestic hot water.

The investigation has been performed as a literature survey complemented by interviews with heat pump manufacturers, consultants and building owners. The goal has been that the project should result in a requirement specification which may be used for future procurement competitions and design of new system solutions etc.


In summary, the following can be concluded from the project:

  • Installation of a heat pump system is a very effective way to reduce a building's energy use without making any major changes in the building envelope and can therefore contribute in reaching the energy efficiency targets of Sweden.
  • For single-family houses that are newly built or that are extensively insulated during renovations, a new generation small cost-efficient heat pumps are needed.
  • The market potential for larger heat pumps, larger than what has been widely used so far, also appears to be very good. There should be a good opportunity to sell such units to both multifamily houses and non-residential premises.
  • Heat pump solutions are particularly competitive in those cases where there is a heating and cooling demand at the same time in the building, but also in those cases where the heating demand dominates over part of the year and the cooling demands dominates during others.

Swedish Energy Agency Eff-Sys2
19 participants from Industry

Time schedule


Project partners

Chalmers University of technology
Lund University

Related Information

Contact Persons

Caroline Haglund Stignor

Phone: +46 10 516 55 45

RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Phone 010-516 50 00, E-mail info@ri.se

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