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Wigan the centre for Japanese-led heat pump study

UK: Leading air conditioning manufacturers Hitachi and Daikin are part of a Japanese-led consortium which is to study the feasibility of heat pumps and information and communication technologies (ICT) in a demonstration project in Wigan.
The consortium, which is being led by Hitachi and also includes Japanese bank Mizuho and the IT strategy company Mizuho Information & Research Institute, has been selected to execute the Smart Community Demonstration Project in various types of housing across Wigan. The project will be spearheaded by Japan's New Energy Development Organization (NEDO).

The project will see the delivery of Japanese cutting-edge technologies including heat pumps and ICT systems and will contribute to the UK's aim to supply over 15% of its energy demand with renewable energy sources by 2020 and to support the penetration of heat pumps up to 30% by 2030.

The consortium says it will conduct a feasibility study, which is expected to be completed by the end of this year. Based on the results of the feasibility study the project will move to the demonstration phase, which is scheduled by the end of March 2016.

The consortium plans to replace gas-fired boilers with 200 to 300 heat pumps in various types of housing and analyse householders' power consumption. It will also study various energy measurement systems, remote monitoring and control.

The proposed scope of the work also includes research and analysis of the UK energy market, energy utilities and heat pumps. It will also include the development of schemes to realise the large-scale roll out of heat pumps.

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