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Title: Residential Variable-Capacity Heat Pumps Sized to Heating Loads

Variable capacity heat pumps are an emerging technology offering significant energy savings potential and improved efficiency. With conventional single-speed systems, it is important to appropriately size heat pumps for the cooling load as over-sizing would result in cycling and insufficient latent capacity required for humidity control. These appropriately sized systems are often under-sized for the heating load and require inefficient supplemental electric resistance heat to meet the heating demand. Variable capacity heat pumps address these shortcomings by providing an opportunity to intentionally size systems for the dominant heating season load without adverse effects of cycling or insufficient dehumidification in the cooling season. This intentionally-sized system could result in significant energy savings in the heating season, as the need for inefficient supplemental electric resistance heat is drastically reduced. This is a continuation of a study evaluating the energy consumption of variable capacity heat pumps installed in two unoccupied research homes in Farragut, a suburb of Knoxville, Tennessee. In this particular study, space conditioning systems are intentionally sized for the heating season loads to provide an opportunity to understand and evaluate the impact this would have on electric resistance heat use and dehumidification. The results and conclusions drawn through this research aremore » valid and specific for portions of the Southeastern and Midwestern United States falling in the mixed-humid climate zone. While other regions in the U.S. do not experience this type of climate, this work provides a basis for, and can help understand the implications of other climate zones on residential space conditioning energy consumption. The data presented here will provide a framework for fine tuning residential building EnergyPlus models that are being developed.« less
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [1]
  1. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
  2. Georgia Inst. of Technology, Atlanta, GA (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
BT0101000; RABT002
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Building Technologies Research and Integration Center (BTRIC)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
Country of Publication:
United States