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District heating 2030

Lead Partner
Energy and Environment (RIS3 Specialization Area Energy and Environment)
01.07.2016 - 31.12.2018
European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) 2014-2020


549,400.00 €
01.07.2016 - 31.12.2018
Project description: The aim of the project is to efficiently use biomass and district heating distribution in cooperation with
three South Tyrolian district heating plants through technological innovations and innovative processes. These efficiency measures could start a system innovation of the heating sector in South Tyrol and thus enable the development and introduction of new business areas. With a nationwide application of these efficiency-enhancing innovations throughout South Tyrol, the following goals can be achieved:

-       5% savings on biomass purchase
-       2 % reduction of network losses, which corresponds to a value of approximately one million euros per year
-       7% reduction of the total output of pollutants from district heating

The energy loss in district heating distribution mainly appears with a too high return temperature – that is the case if the
heating water coming from the district heating plant has a slightly higher temperature when entering the end customer's circuit than when it exits it. To prevent an excessively high return temperature, the customers’ plants must be optimized through hydraulic balancing. Due to the high cost and required time investment, such reconciliation was not done in most cases. Computer-aided systems should now reduce the complexity and facilitate hydraulic balancing.

One solution, which is being researched, could be the reduction in the flow temperature (the temperature of the heating water leaving the district heating plant), because the higher the temperature in the heat pipes, the higher the network losses.

In addition to heat distribution, the use of biomass shows the greatest efficiency gains. On the one hand, biomass should no longer be paid according to cubic meters, but measured in "energy units", which could lead to additional savings. On the other hand, the project is researching to what extent the use of logs instead of woodchips could be advantageous in long-term storage, as it prevents the biodegradation process.




1.     Syneco Group GmbH
2.     Peitner GmbH
3.     Fernheizwerk Welsberg Niederdorf Genossenschaft´
4.     Laaser-Eyrser-Energiegenossenschaft (Leeg)
5.     Fernheizwerk Gossensass Genossenschaft
6.     IDM (project management)




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