- Space heating
Space heating is the
heatingof a space, usually enclosed, such as a house or room. A space heater keeps the air and surroundings at a comfortable temperature for people or animals, or even plants in a greenhouse. Space heating generally warms a small space, and is usually held in contrast with central heating, which warms many connected spaces at once. Space heating does not include water heating, unless it is used for hydronic heating.
boilersthat heat buildings and houses heat space, the term space heater is normally used to refer to relatively small heaters, especially those that are portable or wall-mounted. These space heaters may use natural gasor propane, but they are most commonly electric. Electric heaters are safer because there is no danger of carbon monoxide poisoning. They are also cheaper to buy. However, they are often far more expensive to operate, because electricity is typically more expensive per unit of heat energy produced than gas or propane.
Modern electric space heaters usually have
ceramic heating elements rather than nichrome wires, and are fan-forced with a bloweror squirrel-cage fan. These distribute heat much more evenly, and allow them to be encased in plastic, nearly eliminating the chance of burns or fire. Window and wall units, often seen in hotelrooms, are permanent space heaters. These often employ heat pumps, which use reverse-cycle air conditioningto provide heat to the inside rather than the outside.
Propane space heaters are generally one of two types, radiant (infrared) or circulation-type space heaters. Infrared propane space heaters function to heat objects which in turn heats the surrounding air whereas circulation type space heaters heat the air directly using a fan or convection. Additionally, propane space heaters are either vented or unvented. Unvented space heaters are low capacity heaters used to heat living areas but are not allowed in bedrooms, bathrooms or confined spaces due to fire danger and the possible accumulation of flue gases at high levels.
Kerosene heaters were once common, but may easily cause a fire, and must be completely cooled before being refueled.
In some countries
district heatingis a major source of space heating. This is especially the case in Scandinavia. District heating systems make it possible to distribute all of the energy for space heating as well as water heatingfrom waste heat from industries, power plants, incinerators, geothermal heatingand central solar heating.
In most areas,
fossil fuels are burned to create heat, which is used to boil water and create steamto turn a turbinethat turns a generator that produces electricity. The efficiencyfor the process ranges from about 20 to 60%. Another 5 to 15% is lost in transmission, depending how far the power plant is from the user. Gas heaters on the other hand, use the heat from combustion to directly heat the space through convection, which is much more efficient than electric heating.
combined heat and power(CHP) plants the energy lost in e.g. turbine driven power plants is utilized for district heating. When space heating is supplied by district heating from CHP plants, the total energy efficiency approaches 100 % (and may even exceed 100 % based on the lower heating valueof the fuel).CHP is a major part of the strategy for energy conservationand global warmingprevention in Scandinavia- and increasingly in the rest of Europe.
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
space heating — space heating, adj. the heating of a limited area, as a room, by means of a heater (space heater) within the area. [1930 35] * * * … Universalium
space heating — noun : heating of spaces especially for human comfort by any means (as by fuel, electricity, or solar radiation) with the heater either within the space or external to it * * * space heating, adj. the heating of a limited area, as a room, by… … Useful english dictionary
Space heating — The use of energy to generate heat for warmth in housing units using space heating equipment. The equipment could be the main space heating equipment or secondary space heating equipment. It does not include the use of energy to operate… … Energy terms
space heating — space′ heat ing n. bui the heating of a limited area, as a room, by means of a heater(space′ heat er)within the area • Etymology: 1930–35 … From formal English to slang
space-heating — space heatˈing noun • • • Main Entry: ↑space … Useful english dictionary
space heating — noun Date: 1934 heating of spaces especially for human comfort by any means (as fuel, electricity, or solar radiation) with the heater either within the space or external to it … New Collegiate Dictionary
space heating — noun Heating of rooms within buildings … Wiktionary
Heating intensity — The ratio of space heating consumption or expenditures to square footage of heated floor space and heating degree days (base 65 degrees Fahrenheit). This ratio provides a way of comparing different types of housing units and households by… … Energy terms
heating — n. central; forced air; space heating * * * [ hiːtɪŋ] forced air space heating central … Combinatory dictionary
Heating Degree Days — (HDD) A measure of how cold a location is over a period of time relative to a base temperature, most commonly specified as 65 degrees Fahrenheit. The measure is computed for each day by subtracting the average of the day s high and low… … Energy terms