GEA Ammonia Heat Pumps to Help Decarbonize Britvic’s Beverage Production
Three GEA ammonia heat pumps and a thermal storage tank will be installed at Britvic’s London production facility in a new heat recovery system. (Source: Britvic)

GEA Ammonia Heat Pumps to Help Decarbonize Britvic’s Beverage Production Facility in U.K.

The two RedGenium heat pumps will be part of a new heat recovery system that will convert waste heat to 92°C water, offsetting some of the factory’s heating demand.

German manufacturer GEA will be supplying two of its industrial RedGenium ammonia (R717) heat pumps and a large thermal storage tank to U.K. beverage producer Britvic at its site in Beckton, London.

According to a statement from GEA, the combined 1,500kW (427TR)-capacity heat pumps will be part of a new heat recovery system that will offset some of the production facility’s heating demand, which is currently met by natural gas steam boilers. The heat pumps will employ GEA’s Grasso V XHP compressors.

The system, which has been designed and supplied by GEA, will convert up to 2MW (569TR) of low-temperature waste heat recovered from the facility’s existing production system to 92°C (197.6°F) water, which will then be distributed throughout the factory. Waste heat from the site’s three GEA BluAstrum chillers will also feed the new heat recovery system.

Britvic’s Beverage Production Facility in U.K.
The existing refrigeration system at Britvic’s Beckton site includes three GEA BluAstrum chillers. (Source: GEA)

A valved connection will be included in the new system to provide up to 750kW (213.3TR) of heat, which will be recovered in the future from other sources, such as air compressors and possible future factory expansion.

Decarbonizing industry

The new heat recovery system is expected to decarbonize 50% of the heating demand at Britvics’s manufacturing facility, which produces around 2,000 drinks every minute.

“This project provides us with a fantastic opportunity to extend our leading role in industry decarbonization,” said Simon Gurr, Sales Manager at GEA’s Heating and Refrigeration Division. “GEA’s expertise in both heat pump technology and process integration bring the right solution to Britvic.”

The installation will begin this summer and, once operational, will help reduce the facility’s greenhouse gas emissions by approximately 1,500 metric tons of CO2e emissions each year, said GEA. Emissions reductions will be achieved thanks to using less gas in the traditional steam boilers.

“Upgrading legacy industrial steam heating systems and integrating these with heat pump technology is a challenge,” said Matthew Hadwen, Beverage Sales Manager at GEA’s Liquid and Powder Technologies Division. “At GEA, we can supply heat pumps and integrated process heat exchanger skids as one solution.”

These efforts are supporting Britvic’s goal of reducing its direct greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by 2025 and achieving net zero by mid-century.

“The challenge with this brown-field project was how the improvements support us on our journey to reduce our Scope 1 [direct] and Scope 2 [energy-related] emissions as part of our science-based targets and our Healthier People, Healthier Planet sustainability strategy,” explained Sarah Webster, Director of Sustainable Business at Britvic. “We’re excited to be working with GEA to make our much-loved London factory sustainable for the future.”

“This project provides us with a fantastic opportunity to extend our leading role in industry decarbonization. GEA’s expertise in both heat pump technology and process integration bring the right solution to Britvic.”

Simon Gurr, GEA

GEA’s heat pumps will also be used to replace natural gas steam boilers at Heineken UK’s brewery in Manchester. The system will support a 90°C (194°F) hot water network and result in a 45% decrease in gas use and a reduction of carbon emissions.

Elsewhere in the U.K., two 3MW (853TR) GEA ammonia heat pumps are extracting heat from water in abandoned coal mines to provide low-carbon district heating.

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