UK factories go green using innovative alternatives
Governmental policies and incentives in the UK are encouraging a more environmentally conscious approach in the manufacturing sector.
Many businesses are rising to meet the carbon targets outlined by the government through traditional techniques like solar and wind power. While these tried and tested methods are fast becoming more affordable, some factories are now finding alternative methods of going green.
Heat pumps that draw natural heat from air and ground are an increasingly seen technology used for heating structures in the UK. This innovative method is being adopted by the industrial sector where it offers the multiple benefits of lower operating costs, reduced emissions to meet government targets and more predictable energy bills.
The Cornwall-based Mount Wellington Mine Renewable Energy Business Park makes use of ground-source heat pumps to benefit from the mine’s below-surface heat. A vast amount of plastic piping is fed down into the open mine shaft to harvest it. Through this geothermal array, a mix of antifreeze and water is pumped, and what then returns to surface level is water heated to a temperature from 12-20°C. The pump then increases the water temperature to between 35-40°C and makes use of it in the underfloor heating of the factory.
Park owner Richard Freeborn commented:
“The heat pumps are running at an incredible efficiency, thanks both to the warmth of the mine and the high standards of insulation in our manufacturing building.”
The first of building of its kind in Europe to utilise heat given off by radioactive isotope decay, the factory also produces a fully renewable energy source.