Utilising Nuclear Energy for Low Carbon Heating Services in the UK

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

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    If new build nuclear reactors are built in the UK they will provide a large low carbon thermal resource that can be recovered for heating services through heat networks (district heating). There are however questions about the geographic location of nuclear sites relative to heating demand and public/user interpretations of a potentially controversial technology to consider. This thesis includes three research themes that explore these issues. The first is an assessment of potential non-technical barriers to nuclear heat network development. The second is a focus group approach to studying local resident responses to nuclear heat network technology both as potential users, and as public groups. The third theme considers the technical potential for a heat network connecting the Hartlepool nuclear site to local heating demand centres. The research finds that there is potential for nuclear heat networks to take 70,000 existing users off the natural gas in the Hartlepool area. Following series of expert interviews it finds no non-technical barriers that would be unique to nuclear heat networks as opposed to other heat network types. It also suggests that the technology could be acceptable to local residents if it is framed as a local resource that benefits the local area. These findings indicate that there could be similar potential at Heysham and Oldbury nuclear sites.
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • University of Manchester
    Publication statusPublished - May 2013


    • Heat Networks
    • District Heating
    • Nuclear


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