Raise heat pump attractiveness

Why is this gap important?

Increasing heat pump attractiveness would buttress the clean energy transition, ensuring good heating equipment efficiency that can be employed affordably in different building applications and with other clean energy technologies such as solar PV and energy storage. Further R&D investments would address many barriers to heat pump deployment by making them more compact, easier to install, more efficient, less carbon-intensive and more flexible than conventional heat pumps through enhanced interactions with the grid.

Technology solutions

Some products at an initial stage of innovation are very promising, such as the ‘Climate and Comfort Box’ – a joint research initiative between the IEA Technology Collaboration Programmes on Heat Pumping Technologies (HPT TCP) and Energy Storage (ECES TCP). The concept was formulated and is being validated by the IEA TCPs, working with Mission Innovation partners. A workshop to finalise the work plan for the Climate and Comfort Box initiative took place in Utrecht on 17 January 2019 and it concluded that the joint annex will focus on issues such as affordability, the use of renewables for heating and cooling, and grid load balancing. The next steps will be to develop prototypes, which will require the active involvement of a broader set of stakeholders such as heating and cooling equipment manufacturers.

Climate and Comfort Box Readiness level:

High-performance heat pumps Readiness level:

Colored bars represent the Technology Readiness Level (TRL) of each technology. Learn more about TRLs

What are the leading initiatives?

The work of the IEA’s HPT TCP and ECES TCP to develop a Climate and Comfort Box is driving innovation in marketable integrated heating and cooling solutions; better demand-side management and integral controls; and more efficient use of gas to produce heat and cold.

Recommended actions

Energy, Finance and Environment ministries

By 2025:

  • Provide a policy framework steering demand for high-performance and low-carbon products

IEA Technology Collaboration Programmes: 

Heat Pumping Technologies (HPT TCP)

Energy Storage through Energy Conservation (ECES TCP)

Next 5 years and continuously:

  • Evaluate prototypes and coordinate field tests based on key indicators such as affordability, size and quality
  • Propose an integral design allowing heat pumps to be smart grid ready

Manufacturers and industries

By 2025:

  • Provide feedback on commercial attractiveness and enablers for industrialisation

Finance community

By 2025:

  • Ensure that products are eliglible to various financial instruments such as green bonds

Multilateral development agencies

Next 2 years:

  • Ensure that the product meets local expectations
  • Include the products in development plans



  • Provide analytical support on benefits related to economic and social development, well-being, productivity, public spending or the environment.