Star Refrigeration heating expert to present heat pump sustainability talk at major International Conference in Prague

Dave Pearson poses in front of Clydebank's heat pumps

Star Refrigeration’s Group Sustainable Development Director will host a discussion on district heating and industrial application of heat pumps in front of world-leading industry figures

Star Refrigeration will be represented by its Group Sustainable Development Director, Professor Dave Pearson, at the Industrial Heat Pump International Conference in Prague, Czech Republic, this November 2023.

The major global conference, which will be held from 29th -30th November at the O2 Universum, will focus on large heat pumps for district heating and industrial applications of up to 200 degrees Celsius and will see 27 top industry figures discussing the latest sector trends and technologies.

Dave Pearson, a Royal Academy of Engineering Visiting Professor at Edinburgh Napier University, will be presenting his talk ‘Taking District Heating to Absolute Sustainability’ at 4:40 pm, at the event on the 29th November.

As climate change becomes an ever-increasing issue and the demand to shift away from burning fossil fuels ramps up, many high density urban areas are considering district heating. In his talk, Dave will highlight some common pitfalls to avoid, so that those making the shift over can optimise the opportunity to become more sustainable.

Heat pumps are not merely reserved for individual buildings – they are now at the heart of the best district heating schemes being built across Europe. The groundbreaking water heat pump technology Star designed, manufactured and installed in Drammen in 2010 – utilising zero global warming potential working fluid, ammonia- was a global first. Despite initial scepticism from industry, it has since set multiple engineering milestones and created a new standard in sustainability and city-wide decarbonisation.

Dave Pearson, said, “District heating using heat pumps has already been executed successfully on a large scale across Europe. Star has contributed to this evolution with significant, high-profile projects like Queens Quay in the UK and Drammen in Norway. These examples have established a gold standard in sustainability and best practices. Moving forward, the principles and know-how implemented at those sites should guide our decisions to ensure we adopt the most advanced district heating systems and heat pump technology”.

An advocate for low carbon heat pump technology, Dave has been at the head of progressing industrial scale heat pumps for industrial and district heating applications for nearly 15 years. He has been instrumental in the design and development of district heat pumps across the UK and Europe, many of which have been awarded international accolades including the European Heat Pump Association’s Heat Pump City of the Year award in 2021 and 2022. Star’s Managing Director, Dr Andy Pearson was awarded the International Environmental Agency’s prestigious Rittinger Medal in connection with his contribution to the breakthrough heat pump technology in Drammen.

Dave said, ‘Heat pump technology can help urban populations to decarbonise and city planners to create a greener economy. Though it’s not a magic bullet, the technology has a wide application and as we head closer to 2030, we should be looking at making the switch over from fossil fuels to healthier, safer and more sustainable alternatives, but we must do so without emburdening our children”.

Dave has worked on several standout projects, including England’s largest high-temperature water source heat pump in Bristol City and a 5.2 MW system that leverages the River Clyde’s thermal energy to provide low carbon, affordable heating to Clydebank residents and businesses.

Dave currently chairs the Centre for Education Engineering and Development (CEED), which enables cooperation between business and academia and serves on the Scottish Government’s Energy Advisory Board.

He is a former recipient of the Institute of Refrigeration’s J&E Hall Gold Medal, The Alan Moore Award and Champion of Renewables from Scottish Renewables.

November’s major international conference will cover a broad range of heat pump related topics and is aimed at Energy professionals and Facility and Operations Managers within the Industrial and District Heating sector.

To learn more about the topics lined up for discussion and to download the full agenda and register for the event, please visit

To find out more about Star Refrigeration’s cutting-edge district and industrial heating heat pump technology, along with compelling case studies, visit

Star Refrigeration heating expert to present heat pump sustainability talk at major International Conference in Prague

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