The quest for a compliant heating: PAS 1878 and our smart heating controller

By Mariana Galindo, Project manager, Regulatory Affairs


The EXTEND project  to trial Sunamp’s longer duration energy storage tackle periods of low renewable generation on the grid is well underway, thanks to £9.25 million UK government funding UK Government funding.

But, if you thought it was just about heat batteries, heat pumps, and valves, you are wrong. In fact, it is also about getting smart at home using the right device. Our new smart heating controller is the missing link to creating an energy smart appliance (ESA) out of lots of different components, a game-changer in the world of thermal energy storage.

Where does PAS 1878 meet project EXTEND?

First, let’s have a look at how the EXTEND system looks. It consists of the following:

  • An EXTEND heat battery, an expansion of the thermal storage capacity of our patented Plentigrade® P58 material. 
  • A hydronic enclosure that includes all the pumps and valves connecting the different parts of the system 
  • A Sunamp Thermino® heat battery to provide plentiful hot water at mains pressure
  • A heat pump 
  • The Smart Heating Controller (SHC) 
  • A power diversion and load limiting controller based on Myenergi’s Eddi technology

We are working with our partner, Myenergi, to integrate our smart heating controller with their controller to optimise energy use at home during the trial. This means that those two devices will continuously talk with each other to automatically adjust the house energy consumption based on variables such as electricity prices, grid demand, and the availability of renewable energy. 

Secondly, if you’re wondering where the decarbonisation sits, we need to see the integration between these three components: Myenergi’s controller, Sunamp’s smart heating controller and the EXTEND heat battery. Once our smart heating controller knows all the data about the householder’s heating preferences, energy prices, and maximum load, among others, it will command the battery to store heating energy when energy prices or the grid carbon are low and release it when it is high. This decouples heating needs from the electrical demand, et voila!

Thirdly, and we hope you are at the edge of your seat for this, PAS 1878 is embedded in the EXTEND Project because we are developing our smart heating controller following an approach we coined “PAS 1878 by design”. This will make your life easier and safer. With a device built as per an industry-approved standard, you will be able to:

  1. Easily pair it with other devices that you may already have at home
  2. Easily switch between demand-side response service providers using a standardised interface
  3. Ensure it is operated safely and reliably
  4. Benefit from optimised electricity use based on the cheapest tariff rates and get incentives to provide a demand-side response

As you see, compliance with PAS 1878 is essential for smart household appliances because it enables them to be integrated into a more efficient, reliable, and sustainable energy system. By meeting the minimum interoperability requirements described in PAS 1878, the EXTEND system can help balance electricity supply and demand, reduce energy costs, and support a more sustainable energy future.

Please remember that the above list is just a glimpse of the capabilities you will have with our PAS 1878 by-design smart heating controller. For us, those are the most evident and most straightforward to experience. But the list can go on! If you think of any other or have questions about them, please tag us on your social media using the hashtags #EXTEND #EXTENDproject #thermalstorage #NetZero #longdurationenergystorage #UnleashingInnovation #NZIP. We are looking forward to reading you!

If you’d like to know more about grid intermittency issues read our blog  We need to talk about dunkelflaute

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