Halton’s Lahti factory changes from natural gas to heavy-duty geothermal heating

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“It feels great to be able to say that this kind of industrial plant no longer uses non-renewable natural resources.”

The Halton family business is set to change the heating of its Lahti factory from the currently used natural gas to geothermal heating. The industrial-scale geothermal heat pumps will cut the heating costs of the plant by about 35 per cent and heating-related emissions by about 90 per cent. The new heating solutions will be planned and implemented as a turnkey project by the cleantech company, LeaseGreen.

“Once we move over to geothermal heating, our production plant will be one of the most environmentally friendly in this sector,” says Mika Halttunen, Chairman of the Board and main owner of the Halton Group. “Energy efficiency has always been important to Halton and we want to be on the front line in the battle against climate change.”

The coronavirus is also affecting the operations of industrial companies like Halton all over the world. Halttunen says that the calendar is filled with production, supply chain and logistics challenges that need to be solved. Nevertheless, Halton has a very strong balance sheet and flexible processes that support adaptation.

“As much as we need to focus on what’s in front of us, we also need to look further ahead. We will get through the corona crisis and secure our future. Geothermal heating projects like the one in Lahti are the best possible kind of sustainable investments because they pay for themselves. I am certain that CO2 data will be a strong competitive advantage for large companies once the dust has settled from the coronavirus pandemic.”

Based in Lahti, Finland, Halton Marine produces high-quality HVAC solutions for the most demanding projects in the ship building and energy industries. Halton products clean the air from galley kitchens and prevent exhaust gases and fire from spreading along air vents in the event of a fire. The factory was completed in 1989 and houses about 140 employees. The production facility is 7000 m2 and has a volume of 50 000 m3.

Pekka Kyllönen (pictured here), factory manager at Halton Marine, believes the potential benefits of geothermal heating are exceptionally large and far reaching. Kyllönen says he cannot remember any situation in recent history where one single significant expenditure could be reduced by 35 per cent. It is also satisfying to know that the energy price risk is reduced at the same time as the environment improves.

“It feels great to be able to say that this kind of industrial plant no longer uses non-renewable natural resources. At the same time, we remove the price risk associated with an energy provider. Natural gas has worked like clockwork for us, but the benefits of heating electrification are undeniable.”

LeaseGreen will implement a geothermal heating system with a total output of nearly 350 kW to heat the premises and water at the Halton Marine plant. The geoenergy field will be drilled with 22 wells whose depth is 310–330 metres. During the summer, the same heat pumps will produce cooling energy for the premises which will improve the system’s energy efficiency even further. The excess heat is transferred from the premises to the wells, which are more efficient during the cold months. LeaseGreen will also renew the control automation for the heating and cooling.

“The cooling is the icing on the cake,” says Pekka Kyllönen. “We will have better conditions throughout the entire factory and the ability to control them more precisely. The temperature of the production facilities can be lowered by a few degrees during the summer heat and the air humidity will be lowered. The office cooler was coming to the end of its life anyway, and it uses a lot of electricity.”

According to LeaseGreen’s estimates, the geothermal heating will provide Halton Marine with lifecycle savings of 1.8–2.6 million euros, depending on how energy prices develop. The return on investment will rise to 10–13 per cent. CO2 emissions from heating will be reduced by 100 tonnes yearly, which is roughly equal to the output of 450 solar panels.

According to Kyllönen, Halton decided to partner with LeaseGreen for three reasons: the first was their comprehensive solution, the second was their strong references, and the third was trust.

“We wanted a partner who can handle the entire package. I knew that if we hired a consultant, a planner, a drilling company and other contractors separately, the job would get awkward. LeaseGreen’s approach inspired trust right from the start. I’m confident that these guys will get the job done and that I won’t have to wrestle with them.”

More information

Factory Manager Pekka Kyllönen
Halton Marine
+358 40 524 7272

CEO Thomas Luther
+358 40 534 4256

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