Fenagy sees potential for CO2 heat pumps, heat recovery and refrigeration in sectors beyond food retailing.
Kim Christensen, Fenagy
Fenagy, a new Danish CO2 refrigeration and heat pump manufacturer, is aiming to increase the use of CO2 systems in industrial refrigeration and district heating, taking the technology beyond its foothold in food retailing.
“CO2 has become the most common and accepted technology in supermarkets,” said Kim G Christensen, CEO of Fenagy. “However, we see a completely different pace on the use of CO2 in other applications, and if we look at air conditioning, at heat pumps, or if we look at industrial applications, you see a smaller impact of CO2, and to me it could be used much more.”
“So outside the supermarket segment, I think there's a great potential for a new company focusing on CO2 as refrigerant and able to compete against the existing technologies in these markets,” he added.
Christensen believes that most CO2 equipment manufacturers have adapted to the supermarket segment, with high-volume production capabilities, and standardized solutions. He therefore thinks that he and his Fenagy co-founders have identified a gap in the market, for a company providing a “full-service” approach to refrigeration.
“We are a project-oriented outfit, and we participate in all phases of a project, where I see most of our competitors as very product-oriented, wanting only to deliver a product, nothing else,” Christensen explained.
Fenagy is, in other words, aiming to provide fully customized solutions, “from design, through the installation, commissioning, and maybe even service,” thus fulfilling the expectations of customers, Christensen said.
Fenagy is offering its services for projects ranging from 200kW to 1.2MW (56.9-341.2TR) capacity in industrial refrigeration, and from 200kW to 1.5MW (56.9-426.5TR) for heat pumps.
Heat pumps and heat recovery
For its heat-pump solutions, Fenagy sees a lot of potential for taking natural or waste heat resources and converting them into heat for district-heating grids. The sources can be, for example, ground water, waste water, sea water, or even ambient air.
Fenagy also aims to increase heat recovery from industrial cooling processes. The recovered heat can be used to satisfy the company’s own heating needs, or it can be fed into a district heating system, or even a neighboring company, if the company can’t utilize all the heat itself.
Both heat pumps and heat recovery can help reduce dependence on fossil fuels. Fenagy also aims to use only “green” electricity to run the heat pumps, from solar or wind turbines, to further reduce the use of fossil fuels.
The Danish case
Denmark is a good place to start such a project, for several reasons, according to Fenagy. First, the country has a very ambitious plan to reduce CO2 emissions by 70% by 2030. To reach such a goal “you need to do everything,” Christensen said. “Just a little bit that you do not do, and you will not reach the 70%.”
Second, Denmark has a well-established district-heating system, with 68% of the energy used in homes and private industry coming from the district-heating grid.
Third, the country has adopted some helpful legislative changes within the last 12 months, such as reducing the tax paid on electricity used for heating with heat pumps by 90%, and eliminating a tax on using recovered heat from industrial processes. These changes make it much cheaper to use this waste heat in district heating, and a lot more attractive for district-heating providers to install heat pumps, Christensen explained.
Fenagy is not just looking to the Danish market. Other countries with regional district heating systems include Poland, France, the United Kingdom, and to a lesser extend Germany. These are, therefore, seen as potential markets for Fenagy, once the company has established itself in the Danish market, Christensen said. The use of heat pumps is also common in the other Scandinavian countries of Sweden and Norway, making those attractive markets for Fenagy, as well.
“We are a project-oriented outfit, and we participate in all phases of a project, where I see most of our competitors as very product-oriented, wanting only to deliver a product, nothing else.”
– Kim Christensen, Fenagy