Meet our partners: Oschner

This interview is part of a series! You can see all our partner interviews here.

Ochsner Wärmepumpen (OCHSNER) was founded in 1978 as one of the first companies in Europe to produce heat pumps on an industrial scale, being a well-known producer of innovative heat pump systems covering all types of heat sources and capacities ranging from 2 to 1.600 kW.

In GEOFIT, they are responsible for several innovations with regards to optimising the design of heat pumps. These innovations have never been applied in heat pumps design and sizing and they will allow to decrease the environmental footprint while in parallel making heat pumps more affordable so that they can compete against non-renewable technologies.

One of the innovations, in collaboration with AIT, regards the design of an innovative, electrically-driven heat pump system with low/medium GWP synthetic refrigerant, which in turn makes a more cost-effective use of heat exchangers (HEX). They have also contributed to new methods to calculate heat pump sizing requirements which have been implemented within the IDDS framework used to design our pilot sites. This new methods will prevent oversizing of the heat pump component in geothermal systems which often results in non-optimal efficiencies/return on investment and can decrease the competitiveness of geothermal technologies with respect to competing systems.

These innovations have never been applied in heat pumps design and sizing and they will allow to decrease the environmental footprint while in parallel making heat pumps more affordable so that they can compete against non-renewable technologies.

In this interview, Oschner founder Dipl. Ing. ETH Karl Ochsner talks about the benefits of using the heat pumps in geothermal retrofitting, how projects like GEOFIT can connect themselves to the European Heat Pump Association (EHPA), and its impact on the market and the environment.

European Heat Pump Summit Presentation (2019)

Presentation of GEOFIT at the European Heat Pump Summit (2019)

Title: GEOFIT: Ground source heat pump systems for energy efficient building retrofitting.

Language: English

Author: Michael Lauermann (*1)

*1: AIT Austrian Institute of Technology GmbH, Center for Energy,

Summary: The integration of geothermal systems for heating / cooling solutions in conjunction with heat pump technology is a major challenge, particularly in the case of renovation. In order to find the best solution for the increased flow temperatures compared to a new building for the renovation, various heat pump configurations are evaluated according to energy and economic criteria. A refrigerant with low greenhouse gas potential (GWP) is used as the working medium, e.g. R1234ze (E)) less than 10 used. A favorable refrigeration circuit configuration for high flow temperatures is a twin-circuit system, which essentially consists of two heat pumps with different condensing temperatures and the same evaporation temperatures. An alternative to this is a single-stage configuration with a significantly larger condenser for improved supercooling. Both systems should enable efficient operation when renovating buildings.

Deutscher Kaelte und Klimatechischer Verein (DKV) Presentation (2019)

Presentation of GEOFIT at the 45th Annual Meeting of the Deutscher Kaelte und Klimatechnischer Verein (2019)

Title: Erdwärmepumpen für die energieeffiziente Gebäudesanierung

Language: German

Authors: Michael Lauermann (*1), Johann Emhofer (*1), Edith Haslinger (*1), Karl Ochsner (*2)

*1: AIT Austrian Institute of Technology GmbH, Center for Energy,
*2: Ochsner Wärmepumpen GmbH

Summary: The integration of geothermal systems for heating / cooling solutions in conjunction with heat pump technology is a major challenge, particularly in the case of renovation. In order to find the best solution for the increased flow temperatures compared to a new building for the renovation, various heat pump configurations are evaluated according to energy and economic criteria. A refrigerant with low greenhouse gas potential (GWP) is used as the working medium, e.g. R1234ze (E)) less than 10 used. A favorable refrigeration circuit configuration for high flow temperatures is a twin-circuit system, which essentially consists of two heat pumps with different condensing temperatures and the same evaporation temperatures. An alternative to this is a single-stage configuration with a significantly larger condenser for improved supercooling. Both systems should enable efficient operation when renovating buildings.

Deutscher Kaelte und Klimatechischer Verein (DKV) Paper (2019)

Presentation of GEOFIT at the 45th Annual Meeting of the Deutscher Kaelte und Klimatechnischer Verein (2019)

Title: Erdwärmepumpen für die energieeffiziente Gebäudesanierung

Language: German

Authors: Michael Lauermann (*1), Johann Emhofer (*1), Edith Haslinger (*1), Karl Ochsner (*2)

*1: AIT Austrian Institute of Technology GmbH, Center for Energy,
*2: Ochsner Wärmepumpen GmbH

Summary: The integration of geothermal systems for heating / cooling solutions in conjunction with heat pump technology is a major challenge, particularly in the case of renovation. In order to find the best solution for the increased flow temperatures compared to a new building for the renovation, various heat pump configurations are evaluated according to energy and economic criteria. A refrigerant with low greenhouse gas potential (GWP) is used as the working medium, e.g. R1234ze (E)) less than 10 used. A favorable refrigeration circuit configuration for high flow temperatures is a twin-circuit system, which essentially consists of two heat pumps with different condensing temperatures and the same evaporation temperatures. An alternative to this is a single-stage configuration with a significantly larger condenser for improved supercooling. Both systems should enable efficient operation when renovating buildings.

Sustainable Places Proceedings (2018)

Presentation of GEOFIT at Sustainable Places (2018)

Title: Introducing GEOFIT: Cost-Effective Enhanced Geothermal Systems for Energy Efficient Building Retrofitting

Language: English

Authors: Thomas Messervey  (*1), Marco Calderoni (*1), Angel Font (*2), Mikel Borras (*3), Ray Sterling (*1),
David Martin (*4) and Zia Lennard (*1)

*1: R2M Solution, S.r.l.; Via Fratelli Cuzio 42, 27100 Pavia, Italy.
*2: COMSA Corporación de Infraestructuras, SL, 08014 Barcelona, Spain.
*3: IDP Ingeniería y Arquitectura Iberia S.L.U., Av. de Francesc Macià, 60, 08208 Sabadell, Barcelona, Spain.
*4: COMET GESINCO SL, C Calle unio, 32-LC, Mataro, 08302 Barcelona, Spain.

Abstract: GEOFIT, “Deployment of novel GEOthermal systems, technologies and tools for energy efficient building retrofitting,” is a recently launched 4-year H2020 project funded by the Innovation and Networks Executive Agency (INEA) under the call topic LCE-17-2017: Easier to install and more efficient geothermal systems for retrofitting buildings. GEOFIT is a part of INEA’s Energy Portfolio Low Carbon Economy (LCE), Renewable Energy Technologies (RET) and brings together 24 partners from 10 European countries to work on the development of novel and smart shallow geothermal systems. This paper introduces the project.