Humberside Fire Authority

Solar thermal energy installation for £3.9million fire station in Hull.

Humberside Fire Authority has built a £3.9million fire station in Clough Road, Hull, to replace the existing station built-in 1958.

As part of the new development, Humberside Fire Brigade wanted to use solar thermal energy to provide hot water for the showers and washing areas.

The main contractor is Hobson and Porter.


For this project, the client specified a Veissmann Vitosol 200T vacuum tube collector, connected to a 500 litre Veissmann hot water cylinder. The evacuated tube technology is approximately 20 per cent more efficient than equivalent flat plate system.

The expected output of the system is 3,050kW a year, which will offset the gas needed to generate this energy.



The solar vacuum tubes were installed on the roof of the two-storey building using ballast, rather than a fixed frame, so we didn’t puncture the sedum membrane.

Scaffolding and harnesses were needed to gain safe access to the roof. As a new build, we had to liaise with other trades, including electricians and plumbers, who were doing the internal works at the same time as we were on site.


Return On Investment

As a publicly-funded building, this project is not eligible for the Renewable Heat Incentive.

However, had it been a private sector client, they could have expected a payback period of approximately eight years.

The system would generate savings of about £100 a year and RHI payments of almost £600 a year over 20 years.


At a glance

Main contractor: Hobson Porter

Commissioned: February 2015

Renewable technology: Solar thermal

System used: Veissmann Vitosol 200T vacuum tube collector

CO2 saving: Estimated 564 kg a year

Energy cost saving: £100 a year compared to oil.

RHI payments: £600 for 20 years, index-linked to inflation.

Payback period: Estimated year 8 (combining RHI income and energy cost saving compared to oil)

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