All posts by Leemya McKeown

News and Reviews

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News and product reviews

Cernunnos are passionate about renewable technology and sustainable building design. We take the time to truly understand what are the best products for self- build, serious DIY and property developers and how to ensure that these products work to their maximum.

With a multi- skilled team of builders, designers, engineers and technicians and academics Cernunnos are able to continually adapt to the changing energy market and is now one of the leading companies in the UK.

We regularly test, review and complete write ups on new and upcoming products and technologies.

We monitor what are the best financial investments when it comes to heating and energy systems and how to get more for your money.

We disseminate and share latest government and international policy on renewable energy systems and what that means for our consumers.

We practically consider different types of buildings and design projects and how to make them be the most energy efficient.

Explore our resources and begin learning, and winning.

Listed Building Ground Source Heat Pump

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Cambridge historic building energized by water

Keith Clarke and his family recently moved to River Farm, Haslingfield: a grade II listed building dating back to the 17th Century which was once owned by the pioneering Chivers family, the jam makers.

Ground Source Heat pump listed building

Old river farm

Ground source heat pump listed building

river farm now

 

The property covers a large farm house, a lake, various outbuildings and just over 4 acres of land. Mr Clarke wanted to change the 20 year old mains gas boiler which struggled to keep the house up to temperature and was expensive to run. Undertaking a 21st century renovation of the property is nothing unusual, however a key component of the process was the installation of a ground source heat pump (a Kensa 24kW Single Phase Twin Compressor) in his nearby lake which provided all the homes space heating and hot water.

Watch the video case study here

In the initial consultation Cernunnos recommended Kensa Heat Pumps as a preferred supplier of ground source heat pumps, because its models are manufactured in the UK and also because the Kensa 24kW Twin Compact, the largest single phase compressor on the market, was best placed to handle the property’s high heat load.

The challenges of working with a Grade II listed property

Keith was aware of ground source technology and knew it was an environmentally friendly choice eliminating reliance on fossil fuels. He approached experienced Cambridge-based renewables installer Cernunnos to talk about designing a ground source system that would meet the family’s heating and hot water needs.

The main challenge was to ensure that the heating system can work at lower temperatures and that
the energy efficiency of the property was considered and improved on. The less efficient the property, the greater the heat loss, which would result in a bigger and more expensive ground source heat pump and associated running costs to maintain temperature in the home.

Cernunnos undertook a detailed heat loss study at the start of the project which showed that the house had previously installed basic insulation measures to improve its heat loss; however the annex building where the heat pump is housed was poorly insulated. Cernunnos therefore installed extra insulation underneath a suspended timber floor using 100 mm rigid insulation between and 25mm below the rafters, as well as adding loft insulation.

The heat loss study also showed that many of the existing radiators on the second floor were already oversized and simply needed upgrading from single to double panels. Oversizing radiators ensures that they will work at a lower flow temperature, thus reducing the amount of work the heat pump is required to do to ‘uplift’ the renewable heat energy from the ground to the required temperature for the home.

Downstairs Cernunnos installed underfloor heating which provided both an even heat and minimal disruption to the original features of the property.

Peter McKeown, Director at Cernunnos said: “underfloor heating provided an ambient temperature delivered by the heat pump, which together with the new radiators ensure an efficient installation all round. We also recommended that the Clarke’s use state of the art Honeywell Evo-Home heating controls to allow them to control the temperature independently in every single room.”

As a listed building Cernunnos worked together with South Cambridgeshire District Council who were whole heartedly supportive to giving planning permission. Peter joked:” the listed buildings officer was even helping us with the digging!”

<H3>Harnessing heat energy from a natural water source</H3>
The lake on the grounds is fed by a natural spring. Cernunnos measured its flow rate, area and depth, and provided this information to Kensa who recommended that the Clarke’s use the heat energy in the lake for their heating and hot water.
The Cernunnos team sunk five specially created Kensa pond mats consisting of 300m of slinky pipe attached to weighted and corrosion resistant stainless steel frames to the bottom of lake. They connected the closed loop system up to the heat pump housed in an annex building via pipes running under the lawn up to the main house. This method removed the need for large amounts of drilling or digging, thereby reducing the cost and duration of the installation.

Keith commented: “When you see the property now it looks totally untouched you would never believe there are pipes in the garden and a heat pump in the lake!”

Chris Davis, Commercial Director at Kensa Heat Pumps said: “More and more people are realising that they can use water as a heat source for their ground source heat pump as it is an excellent conductor. In this case, the Clarke’s lake has a natural stream flowing into it replenishing the energy supply and creating a highly efficient water source system.

“The property had a high heat load on a single phase power supply, so Kensa’s 24kW Twin was perfectly placed to provide the required levels of heating and hot water. The measures that Cernunnos took to improve the heat loss of the building, taking into account its Grade II listed status, meant that the Clarke’s benefit from lower running costs too.”

Saving money through system efficiencies and Government grants

Mr Clarke said: “I knew that ground source was a great technology for extracting the natural heat that’s available from the environment to provide a completely green heating system. The good thing about the pipes being in the lake is that water has great conductivity meaning we are able to extract heat sustainably throughout the winter to keep the house perfectly warm.

“I know that there’s a big investment involved in getting a ground source heat pump, however we realised that we could get the whole thing paid for with the Renewable Heat Incentive, including the installation. Plus, we’ve ended up with a system where the yearly cost of electricity is less than we would have been paying for gas.”

Written by Leemya McKeown

Water Source Heatpump Case Study Cambridgeshire

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Mr Clarke replaced his gas boiler with a Kensa 24kW Single Phase Twin Compressor to harness renewable heat energy from a nearby lake to provide space heating and domestic hot water (DHW) to his Grade 2 listed farmhouse.

Key facts:

  • 24kW Single Phase Twin Compressor
  • Replaced mains gas boiler
  • Underfloor heating
  • Highly efficient water source system
  • Pond mats sunk into lake
  • Radiator Changes
  • Integrated heating control systems
  • Costs covered by Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI)

    See more

Heating controls

Ground Source Heat Pump installers, Cambridge,Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire

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Ground Soure Heat Pump installation project details

We are now at the final stages of our latest project Stiebel Eltron ground souce heat pump. Here are the facts of the project

The property: A 170 square meter 4 bedroom detached 1970’s property situated in rural Barton, Cambridgeshire

The clients challenge Our client had old, ugly ecomony 7 electric storage heaters and wanted a highly efficent system that was fully integrated and automated.

Our solution We installed the Stiebel Eltron GSHP solution connecting to Underfloor heating throughout the first floor and ground floors. We also instlled the heat mizer neo stat heating controls combined with the stiebel eltron GS heat controller our client had full control of thier heating when they are at home or away using remote smart tablet system.

Cost SavingsIntially ou client was spending over £2,900 a year on storage heaters this has reduced to £1000 a cost saving of £1900 a year. We have also applied for the RHI which will yeild a further £4200 a year for the next 7 years.

WP_20150519_13_18_32_ProGround Source Heat Pump

Ground Source Heat Pump

Heating controls

Ground source heat pump trench

Ground Source Heat Pump, Barton Cambridgeshire

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Ground Source Heat Pump and Underfloor Heating Installation

Background

Our client had returned to cambridgeshire buying his ‘forever’ home for him and his family. The property a seventies detached house sits on a large plot of land some 2,790 sq foot. Having to undertake a complete renovation and remodelling of the house, our client wanted to take the opportunity of minimising the costs and find an alternative oil system.

What we’ve done so far

Working with our client we decided to go for the Stibel eltron highly efficient 20 KW ground source heat pump.

Stage 1

Dig a dig dig…. trench digging for ready for putting in the coil

Ground source heat pump trench

Ground source heat pump trench

groundsource heat pump digger

groundsource heat pump digger

Coils system for the tench

Coils system for the tench

 

Log Gasification boiler Bishop strotford

Biomass log gasification boiler Bishops Stortford

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Biomass System: Angus Orligno 200 25kW Log Gasification Boiler Bishops Stortford

Background

Our client is a tree surgeon by trade and had the intuitive idea of wanting a heating system that he could use the excess wood that he accumulates in his day job. Discussing options with our client wanted to replace the old oil system. The EPC estimated that the annual heating costs would be in excess of £25000 a year!

Log Gasification boiler Bishop strotford

Log Gasification boiler

The Solution

Cernunnos installed An EcoAngus Orlignio 25 kW log gasification boiler, with a 2000 litre Akva Thermal Store. This was installed in a barn, with 35 meter district heating pipe, which connected back to the main house where a 300 litre thermal store which was installed. This replaced the existing boiler – the second store was used to create a small local heat store to save a constant long run from the barn to the house.

Log Gasification boiler Bishop strotford

Log Gasification boiler Bishop strotford

The Outcome

A long term purchase, Biomass is eligible for the Government Renewable Heat Incentive. This has allowed our client to receive annual payments for the next 7 years. The payments were in the region of £4400 per year. Our Client made a total saving of up to £6900 per year. The payback on the system would be just over 2 years.
If you would like to understand more about the pricing and potential paybacks for installing Biomass and learn more about any of the systems in this case study give us a call on : 01223 852267 or drop us a line by filling out the contact form below.

Cernunnos winning team

Cambridge Company Cernunnos wins renewable Energy installer of the year!

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Local Cambridge renewable energy company Cernunnos
have been awarded “renewable Energy installer of the year” and “renewable project of the year” at the Green Deal & Eco Awards 2015

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CAMBRIDGE_064The ceremony is aimed to celebrate and recognise the work of people, projects and initiatives in the renewable energy sector.
Cernunnos established in 2011 has become one of the fastest growing renewable companies in the eastern region.

CAMBRIDGE

Working with both domestic customers and local businesses to make the switch to a more sustainable source of energy, Cernunnos have also mademore prominent impacts through their work with Cambridge university and St Faiths school in creating imaginative solar and heating initiatives.

Cernunnos winning team

Cernunnos winning team

The specific wining project was for their eco fit out of Top Farm Barn, Cernunnos’s main headquarters- a display area open to the public where residents of Cambridge can explore and touch sustainable materials, and discuss projects. What makes this project award winning is that although grade ii listed dating back to the 17th century it has been completely transformed. As Leemya McKeown development manager explains. : “the space and the heritage of the property was simply breath taking. However it had been empty for some time. We wanted to bring the property back to life using the latest renewable technologies an sustainable interiors and be an example of best practice’.

Business development Manager Leemya Mckeown

Business development Manager Leemya Mckeown

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Cernunnos believe that their high level of bespoke service and expertise they provide to their customers have contributed to their award victory. Director Peter Mckeown said: “It is a fantastic endorsement of what we have done and a great accolade for everyone in the company”.


CAMBRIDGE_082 (Medium)Awards Cermonny
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Written by Leemya McKeown

WP_20150227_14_52_11_Pro

Cernunnos: Solar Panel Installers Peterborough

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Background

Our client had just moved into a new home in Peterbough. They had solar panels installed in their previous home and had enjoyed the benefits of being able to use solar power for all their electricity and have a significant reduction in their energy bills. They approached Cernunnos as their solar pv installers as we had been recommended to them by our one of our previous customers

Peterborough  Solar PV  Install

Peterborough Solar PV
Install

WP_20150227_13_16_44_Pro

Project details

Cernunnos undertook a full site survey and completed solar panel design layout using 14 LG 280 watt WP_20150227_14_52_11_Propanels . Utilising two roof aspects, south east and south west, 7 panels were installed on each roof aspect. A Solar Cache (Duo) was also installed by Cernunnos to enable for hot water heating directly from the solar electricity produced
As Cernunnos are MCS registered (Microgeneration Certification Scheme) we also applied for the FiT (Feed-In Tariff).
The total cost of the installation was £5899.54 (inclusive of VAT). The installation generates 3561 kWh of energy per year leading to a payback of 7.12 years!

Hargassner Biomass 35kW, St Neots

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Background

Victorian rectory St Neots

Victorian rectory St Neots

Our client was finding it hard to manage their energy consumption. Living in a Victorian rectory in Buckden, St Neots (south Cambridgeshire) the property had beautiful period features of very large rooms with high ceilings. The property was also single glazed with only an old oil boiler to heat all of the space. With a young family and the ever increasing demand for energy to fuel their home, our client was looking for a long term solution.

The Solution

What we did:

We installed a Hargassner wood chip biomass boiler-35kW Classic –Vacuum Suction with thermal store (buffer vessel) that holds 4.5 tonnes of pellets and would provide both central heating and hot water.

T

Thermal Store and hopper location

Thermal Store and hopper location

Buffer tank

Buffer tank

Hargassner biomass system

Hargassner biomass system

One of the ultimate in biomass systems Hargassner boasts 95 % efficiency. It is also considered low maintenance with automated ignition and automated cleaning and ash collection options.

We also installed Honeywell Evo home controls. These allowed our client to zone different spaces in the home and regulate the temperature much more easily.

Outcome

A long term purchase, Biomass is eligible for the Government Renewable Heat Incentive. This has allowed our clients to receive annual payments for the next 7 years. Which together with the added efficiency of a new system means that the upfront costs will be covered within the 4 years.
If you would like to understand more about the pricing and potential paybacks for installing Biomass and learn more about any of the systems in this case study give us a call on : 01223 852267 or drop us a line by filling out the contact form below

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Leemya McKeown

Cernunnos talking about Cambridge local business renewable energy on BBC radio

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How it all began:- Cambridge, renewable technolgies and South Cambs business support

Cernunnos business Development Manager Leemya McKeown was asked on the Dotty Mcleod breakfast radio show to discuss one of the secrets behind Cernunnos’s sucess.
From a small start up in Cambridge to one of Cambridge’s biggest recent sucess stories, Leemya Mckeown highlights the importance of taking local business support. We also get to find out what she did before she formed Cernunnos. Check the interview here

Leemya McKeown

Leemya McKeown

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Written by Leemya McKeown