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Energy-Efficient Heating and Cooling Networks

The energy-efficient provision, distribution and use of local and district heating requires supply networks and infrastructure for energy management that will be capable of integrating solar thermal heat in future. Future heating and cooling networks will become more diverse and their operation more complex. The key to increasing energy efficiency in cities and municipalities is to integrate and link new energy technologies in the supply and building services technology areas. Examples include decentralised cogeneration, low-exergy concepts, heat recycling and innovative insulation in heat distribution systems.

The research funding on energy-efficient heating and cooling networks is aimed at new network concepts and the development of innovative technologies. Various aspects are being investigated in demonstration and pilot projects, such as reducing network temperatures in existing building stock, planning and operating complex low-temperature networks, using existing and new networks as busbars for decentralised waste heat, multiple injection into existing and new networks, using large-scale heat pumps in district heating as well as the integration of thermal storage systems. In addition, new technologies and concepts for combined heat and power generation are being researched, including for small output ranges. Other areas include innovative heating and cooling technologies, heat exchanger systems, the utilisation of accumulated waste heat, low-exergy systems and related system components, piping and laying technology, innovative house transfer stations and correspondingly adapted building technologies, measuring techniques, information and communication technologies as well as smart metering.

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