Energy technology company Oilon and energy company Helen have won the prestigious The Heat Pump Award in the DecarBuilding series with their mutually developed heat pump solution. The competition, arranged by the European Heat Pump Association EHPA since 2011, rewards most innovative and energy-efficient heat pump projects on the continent.

In the winning project, a new kind of heat pump solution was built into an apartment block in Pasila, Helsinki. The heat pump provides both heating and cooling for the property. Heat sources include the property’s waste water, an array of boreholes as well as the refrigeration appliances and space cooling systems used in the building’s own grocery store. Additionally, if the amount of energy generated exceeds the consumption in the building, the surplus heat will be transferred to Helen for use in district heating.

“Not a single joule of energy is wasted here”, says Oilon Chief Business Officer Martti Kukkola.

Two-way energy production and consumption becoming more common is part of a trend renewing the heating and cooling of buildings in a more environmentally friendly way.

“Recycling is always sensible, but investing in technologies improving energy efficiency and the utilisation of waste heat is more important now than ever”, says Senior Vice President Sari Mannonen of Helen’s Solutions and Portfolio Department.

Heat pumps have a large role to play here.

“Many different means are needed on the road to carbon neutrality and energy independence, among which powerful heat pumps are some of the best”, says Kukkola.

An intelligently reacting Oilon ChillHeat pump is the beating heart of the award-winning Postipuisto housing district circular economy hybrid solution as well, which is able to operate in different part load and temperature ranges.

“The most innovative aspect is that various heat sources can be utilised at different times of the year together at an optimal and carbon-neutral way”, Kukkola explains.

According to Sari Mannonen, the housing district planned for the Helsinki Postipuisto area set a new standard for the energy efficiency of new construction projects. Helen and Oilon took up the challenge together, as they have done pioneering work in the recovery of waste heat for over ten years now. Waste heat has been reclaimed for example at the world’s largest heat pump facility Katri Vala and at several commercial sites and real estate locations. The award-winning project however took the utilisation rate to another level.

“This recognition is yet another indication of how partnerships between industrial product development efforts and companies servicing various customer segments create novel innovations and technologies that will help us achieve energy independence”, Mannonen rejoices.