Heat Pumps for Brick Drying at Wienerberger

| Wienerberger group is the world’s largest producer of clay blocks and facing bricks, leading in the clay roof tile and concrete pavements market in Europe, and one of the strongest market players in concrete and plastic pipes.

Heat pump drying shall replace the actual fossil-based combustion-driven drying technique in the future. Therefore, Wienerberger will integrate a closed loop high temperature heat pump demonstrator in a brick dryer at their production site in Uttendorf, Upper Austria, as part of the European cofounded H2020 project DryFiciency, which is coordinated by AIT Austrian Institute of Technology GmbH.

Bricks are dried in a continuous tunnel dryer, where the moisture content of the bricks is reduced from around 30% to 2 – 4%. The heat pump uses waste heat to provide hot air for the dryer. It includes piston compressors from Viking Heat Engines A/S, which are based on a proven, heavy-duty design developed in collaboration with the world's largest engine design company, AVL.

The compressors are compatible with all common refrigerants of the 3rd and 4th generations e.g. HFOs like OpteonMZ from Chemours group (www.chemours.com), which is used in the demonstrator. For its lubrication a novel lubricant is supplied by FUCHS Schmierstoffe GmbH.

The heating capacity of the heat pump demonstrator is 400 kW, the heat supply temperatures range from 110 to 160°C. The heat pump replaces a natural gas burner and shall lead to end energy savings of up to 84% and reductions in CO2 emissions of about 80%. For more information, please visit our website www.dryficiency.eu and sign up to our newsletter or our social media channels.


EHPA invites everyone to submerge themselves in the possibilities that heat pumps are capable to offer in several industrial sectors. To read more stories the updated booklet is currently available on EHPA’s website.