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AV Dawson Steel Store, Teeside

Ground Source Heat Pump Case Study
AV Dawson Steel Store, Teeside

AV Dawson Steel Store, Teeside

Teesside-based logistics firm AV Dawson has built a new 130,000m3 warehouse specifically to store £15m-worth steel coils for a nearby international car manufacturer. With the steel at risk of ‘sweating’ and rusting in high humidity levels exceeding 65%, the company was tasked with ensuring a very specific climate for the warehouse (without which the steel would be rendered unusable), while also maintaining low energy costs.

The Solution

Howard Tribick, director at local renewable energy specialist and NIBE VIP Installer HT Energy, specified, designed and fitted ten NIBE F1345 ground source heat pumps (GSHPs). Given the site is built on top of an active water table (the River Tees), Howard and the team were able to make the most of the surroundings as a natural energy source. The heat pumps collect heat from 70 bore holes, each 150m deep – a total of 10,500m of active bore hole depth. Each 60kW GSHP is paired with its own ventilating unit and 500L NIBE UKV buffer tank – producing a total output of 600kW. Solar panels on the roof provide an additional 220kW to help meet the warehouse’s electricity needs.


With the ten GSHPs now fully operational, the results have been even better than expected – with a seasonal performance factor (SPF) of 3.65 and average humidity levels of just 47%. Interconnected with 3km of header pipes, the GSHPs are spaced equidistantly along one side of the 264m-long building. The units are set up as separate systems, so they can work independently of each other or together as required. This provides an added level of security for the customer, ensuring the system can cope at all times and the steel is kept at optimum conditions.

Customer testimonial

“This system made perfect commercial sense for us. While the initial outlay was greater than some of the other alternatives, GSHPs provided the most cost-effective solution by far in the long term. In fact, compared to natural gas, we will be making an impressive energy saving of 1.58 million kW/h each year. Our projected payback period is just ten years and we’re also benefiting from Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) payments for each unit of renewable energy we’re generating.”

Gary Dawson, managing director, AV Dawson

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