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Famous skating arena “The Viking Ship” goes CO2!

The Norwegian skating arena Vikingskipet, or “The Viking Ship”, is well-known due to its architectural shape resembling a Viking ship turned upside down. It was built for the Winter Olympics in 1994 and is Norway's national arena for skating.

Viking Ship in Hamar. Source:

EKA has currently supported the owner Hamar Olympiske Anlegg, HOA, in designing a CO2 heat pump as a complementary heat source for the facility. The Viking Ship comprises an ammonia refrigeration system built in 1992 with an integrated 800 kW ammonia heat pump. This is a very environmentally friendly and efficient solution which today covers about 70% of the heating demand. However, the existing ammonia heat pump can only operate when the refrigeration system is in operation and produces a maximum of 50°C forward water temperature. HOA therefore wanted a complementary heat pump solution that could produce higher temperatures and operate throughout the whole year, providing the necessary heat for hot water production while lowering the district heating bill.

After a short pre-study EKA recommended to install a 200 kW CO2 heat pump which during ice season primarily uses the ammonia refrigeration system as heat source via a separate ammonia condenser. During off season (no ice), ambient air will replace the refrigeration system as heat source. This solution offers the advantages of providing higher hot water temperatures (>75°C) during ice season when plenty of resurfacing water is required, thus reducing the district heating demand. During off season, which is typically the warmer part of the year, the heat pump will utilize the ambient air and should nominally cover nearly the complete heat demand.

The procurement process has just started, and the heat pump is planned to be installed at the end of the current ice season i.e. in March 2019.


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