This paper describes the development of a microcomputer based control system for a heat pump containing an electrical variable speed compressor drive and a motorized expansion valve. It is designed to operate under very much varying load conditions with minimum power consumption. Difficulties that were encountered during engineering tests could finally be overcome by a relatively simple, practical regulator configuration. It operates near optimum efficiency by regulating a certain temperature difference in the evaporator. Experimental data on operating characteristics and performance are included in the paper.