Life cycle cost analysis (LCCA) of Stirling-cycle-based heat pumps vs. conventional boilers

Umara Khan, Cornelis A P Zevenhoven*, Lydia Stougie, tor martin tveit

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
58 Downloads (Pure)


Heat pumps (HPs) which use low temperature (waste) heat and renewable energy sources to provide high temperature heat are widely regarded as a critical technology for reducing carbon dioxide emissions in the industrial sector. The HighLift technology considered here can provide high temperature output heat up to around 200 °C. This article focuses on the Life Cycle Cost Analysis (LCCA) method and its use for the economic evaluation of different industrial-scale heating methods i.e., a Stirling-cycle-based heat pump, a fossil fuel oil-fired boiler (OB), a bio oil-fired boiler (BOB), a natural gas-fired boiler (NGB) and a biogas-fired boiler (BGB). Many input parameters and boundary conditions apply to Sweden, where the considered heat pump is located. Findings from this study suggest that when comparing the life cycle costs of all these technologies Stirling-cycle-based heat pumps give more economic benefits than fossil fuel or biofuel-fired conventional boilers. For a typical 15-year lifespan, its total life cycle cost decreases in following order OB > BOB > NGB > BGB > SC-HP. The study indicates that replacing conventional boilers with a Stirling-cycle-based heat pump, despite an increased initial cost, would still be a cost-effective heating option due to lower operating and maintenance costs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100105
Number of pages8
JournalCleaner Environmental Systems
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


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