The developers of the world’s first microwave-powered boiler claim that the technology might reduce residential heating emissions and even wholly replace current gas boilers.
Heating our houses contributes to about 14% of the UK’s carbon emissions, and the government is looking at measures to support that the country achieves net zero emissions by 2050.
Hence, in order to decarbonize existing homes, the government is evaluating heat pumps and hydrogen heating as two low-carbon alternatives gas combi boilers, which will be outlawed in new construction beginning in 2025 and phased out entirely by the middle of the 2030s.
The majority of microwave boilers on the market today are still in the prototype stage. However, experts predict that they will outperform other low-carbon heating systems as a replacement for gas boilers.
These modern boilers function in the same way as conventional ones, but instead of producing heat through combustion, they do so by microwaves, a form of electromagnetic radiation.
Microwave boilers use electricity instead of gas to operate, which lowers the amount of pollution they emit.
Although some customers might be concerned about this given the nationwide increase in electricity rates, manufacturers claim that the electrical demand will be comparable to that of an electric oven.
Different companies have directed their efforts toward developing microwave boilers, which employ an integrated electronics strategy to produce a very effective microwave heating system.
With an energy efficiency of over 96 percent made possible by this, users will pay no more or less than they would have with conventional gas boilers to heat their households’ water.
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How do Microwave boilers work?
Microwaves are a type of radiation just like light waves, infrared and ultraviolet.
In the context of producing heat, the microwaves in a microwave boiler are produced from solid state components like conductors and are directed at water molecules to make them vibrate at extremely high speeds to heat the water.
This water that has been heated can then be used to provide hot water to taps, showers and other hot water outlets.
How much do microwave boilers cost?
Early in 2021, Heat Wayv, a British energy technology company, was credited with making the first microwave-powered boiler.
The boiler is 84 percent efficient at turning power into hot water, according to the manufacturer, and an additional 12 percent of waste heat is recovered, for a total efficiency of 96 percent. The heating system is expected to be significantly greener overall than the ones in use today.
By the conclusion of 2022, Heat Wayv, the company, plans to test the boilers in homes, with the goal of making the first client sales in 2024.
A similar gas boiler would cost roughly £3,500 for a unit suited for a three- or four-bedroom house.
For the major part, electricity is used by the boiler to heat the water, which is then pumped through the house’s faucets, showers, and baths. Therefore, the total cost of the heating will only be affected by the price of energy.
Heat Wayv has come up with a couple of options for microwave boilers at the moment:
Since it doesn’t require an external vent, the Heat Wayv One prototype can be installed on any interior wall or adapted into any existing heating system in less than a day. Its size is comparable to that of a normal combi boiler.
The Heat Wayv Max is just a larger version of the Heat Wayv One device. To make it sufficient for for bigger homes, the Heat Wayv Max incorporates a pressurized 280L internal hot water tank that uses the same technology and energy platform.
Below are some of the promising benefits of microwave boilers when they are intalled into homes:
Extremely environmentally friendly due to almost 0% emissions.
Least hassle when it comes to switching the existing boiler inside the homes and spaces.
They produce little to no sound while turned off for heating which sidesteps noise pollution.
They come with a zero cost for maintenance ideally.
Compatible with the homeowners’ current radiators and pipes which relieves the stress of a lengthy installation process from scratch.
They come with an app controlling system. The app can be downloaded to any easily accessible device and control the heating.
Cons of Microwave boilers
Although microwave boilers have a huge amount of potential, they could also have some significant disadvantages.
The fact that microwave boilers are carbon-free and environmentally benign is frequently emphasized.
Even though the boiler itself won’t emit carbon, making power frequently will. A microwave boiler requires green electricity to be considered a low-carbon heating system by true means.
Since these types of boilers run on electricity, the cost of power is the main issue from the perspective of a homeowner.
The price of electricity might be up to multiple times higher that of natural gas. Therefore, it is anticipated that a home’s energy costs will increase if a microwave boiler is installed.
Thankfully, microwave boilers are made to fit into practically all types of homes due to the following factors:
Prototypes of microwave boilers are already available in a variety of sizes, and the majority of them are designed to fit inside the kitchen and not take up room elsewhere in the house because, particularly in smaller apartments, space is a major concern. As a result, despite the size of homes
The boilers’ compatibility with currently available radiators on the market is another factor. It’s likely that the microwave boiler will fit your existing radiator perfectly, saving you the expense of buying a new one.