News Article

History & Benefits Of Radiant Heating

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21 November 2014

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What to know more about the history & benefits of radiant heating? Our expert Alan Yates gives you a brief history and highlights the key benefits of radiant heating.

Radiant heating was identified by famous British Astronomer Sir William Herschel! Way back in 1800 he was using a thermometer to measure the temperature of sunlight diffused through a prism and noticed that the temperature rose at the red end of the visible spectrum. In fact, it was beyond the red spectrum that the highest temperature was reached – the infrared spectrum. Today’s scientists know that it is through the range of infrared or ‘invisible’ light waves that we receive over 50% of the sun’s energy. Radiant heating is a very versatile space heating medium. It can be used for full heating schemes, spot heating and situations with high air change rates as an effective and economical alternative to other technologies.

Radiant is the original Green energy heating medium. The benefits for full heating schemes are:


By controlling the heating in zones you can achieve different temperatures in different areas of the same building. This is very useful in situations where some areas are used for production and others for storage.

Running costs

As noted above, radiant heating is the original green energy solution and compares favourably to other heating technologies on running costs. ECA approved models are available, as are Part L compliant models.


As radiant heating is dependent on coverage there are usually more heat sources than with other heaters. As a result, should a heater fail, it represent a smaller percentage of the whole system and repair can usually be deferred to the time of an annual maintenance visit rather than requiring expensive breakdown callouts.

Plus, as already mentioned, there is the flexibility to zone radiant heating and to achieve different temperatures in different areas.

Clean, quiet and draught free

Radiant quietly warms objects without creating draughts. Heated areas are cleaner and quieter.

Spot Heating

Because radiant works by heating people and objects, and not the air, it can be used very effectively as a heater to spot heat an area within an area. As long as the design is correct and there is enough ‘radiant intensity’ within the area to be heated, it is ideal for heating a particular area while leaving adjacent areas unheated. For example, comfort conditions can be achieved for one person working within a small area of a large shed.

High Air Change Areas

Again, because the air temperature with radiant heating is lower than with other heating systems, it is an ideal solution in high air change rate areas. If the high air change is caused by extraction or frequently opening doors less energy is lost and the required temperature is restored faster.

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