Delivering net-zero carbon heat: technoeconomic and whole-system comparisons of domestic electricity- and hydrogen-driven technologies in the UK

Title: Delivering net-zero carbon heat: technoeconomic and whole-system comparisons of domestic electricity- and hydrogen-driven technologies in the UK
Authors: Olympios, AV
Aunedi, M
Mersch, M
Krishnaswamy, A
Stollery, C
Pantaleo, AM
Sapin, P
Strbac, G
Markides, CN
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: Proposed sustainable transition pathways for moving away from natural gas in domestic heating focus on two main energy vectors: electricity and hydrogen. Electrification would be implemented by using vapour-compression heat pumps, which are currently experiencing market growth in many countries. On the other hand, hydrogen could substitute natural gas in boilers or be used in thermally–driven absorption heat pumps. In this paper, a consistent thermodynamic and economic methodology is developed to assess the competitiveness of these options. The three technologies, along with the option of district heating, are for the first time compared for different weather/ambient conditions and fuel-price scenarios, first from a homeowner’s and then from a whole-energy system perspective. For the former, two-dimensional decision maps are generated to identify the most cost-effective technologies for different combinations of fuel prices. It is shown that, in the UK, hydrogen technologies are economically favourable if hydrogen is supplied to domestic end-users at a price below half of the electricity price. Otherwise, electrification and the use of conventional electric heat pumps will be preferred. From a whole-energy system perspective, the total system cost per household (which accounts for upstream generation and storage, as well as technology investment, installation and maintenance) associated with electric heat pumps varies between 790 and 880 £/year for different scenarios, making it the least-cost decarbonisation pathway. If hydrogen is produced by electrolysis, the total system cost associated with hydrogen technologies is notably higher, varying between 1410 and 1880 £/year. However, this total system cost drops to 1150 £/year with hydrogen produced cost-effectively by methane reforming and carbon capture and storage, thus reducing the gap between electricity- and hydrogen-driven technologies.
Issue Date: 15-Jun-2022
Date of Acceptance: 1-Apr-2022
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10044/1/97191
DOI: 10.1016/j.enconman.2022.115649
ISSN: 0196-8904
Publisher: Elsevier
Journal / Book Title: Energy Conversion and Management
Volume: 262
Copyright Statement: © 2022 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Sponsor/Funder: Natural Environment Research Council
Engineering & Physical Science Research Council (EPSRC)
Engineering & Physical Science Research Council (EPSRC)
Engineering & Physical Science Research Council (E
Funder's Grant Number: NE/L002515/1
EP/V042149/1
EP/R045518/1
RG/150258
Keywords: Science & Technology
Physical Sciences
Technology
Thermodynamics
Energy & Fuels
Mechanics
Domestic heating
Electrification
Energy system
Heat pump
Hydrogen
Net zero
THERMOECONOMIC OPTIMIZATION
MULTIOBJECTIVE OPTIMIZATION
ENERGY EFFICIENCY
EXERGY ANALYSES
ABSORPTION
PUMP
GAS
TEMPERATURE
PERFORMANCE
REFRIGERANT
Science & Technology
Physical Sciences
Technology
Thermodynamics
Energy & Fuels
Mechanics
Domestic heating
Electrification
Energy system
Heat pump
Hydrogen
Net zero
THERMOECONOMIC OPTIMIZATION
MULTIOBJECTIVE OPTIMIZATION
ENERGY EFFICIENCY
EXERGY ANALYSES
ABSORPTION
PUMP
GAS
TEMPERATURE
PERFORMANCE
REFRIGERANT
0906 Electrical and Electronic Engineering
0913 Mechanical Engineering
Energy
Publication Status: Published
Open Access location: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enconman.2022.115649
Article Number: ARTN 115649
Online Publication Date: 2022-04-30
Appears in Collections:Electrical and Electronic Engineering
Chemical Engineering
Grantham Institute for Climate Change
Faculty of Natural Sciences



This item is licensed under a Creative Commons License Creative Commons