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Technology Pathways and Economic Analysis for Transforming High Temperature to Low Temperature District Heating Systems

DLR Institute of Networked Energy Systems, Carl-von-Ossietzky-Str. 15, 26129 Oldenburg, Germany
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Academic Editor: David Borge-Diez
Energies 2021, 14(11), 3218; https://doi.org/10.3390/en14113218
Received: 26 March 2021 / Revised: 10 May 2021 / Accepted: 18 May 2021 / Published: 31 May 2021
There are 1454 district heating systems in Germany. Most of them are fossil based and with high temperature levels, which is neither efficient nor sustainable and needs to be changed for reaching the 2050 climate goals. In this paper, we present a case study for transforming a high to low temperature district heating system which is more suitable for renewable energy supply. With the Carnot Toolbox, a dynamic model of a potential district heating system is simulated and then transformed to a low temperature supply. A sensitivity analysis is carried out to see the system performance in case space constrains restrict the transformation. Finally, an economic comparison is performed. Results show that it is technically possible to perform the transformation until a very low temperature system. The use of decentralized renewable sources, decentralized heat storage tanks and the placement of a heat pump on each building are the key points to achieve the transformation. Regarding the sensitivity analysis, the transformation is worth doing until the seasonal storage and solar collector field sizes are reduced to 60% and 80% of their values in the reference case, respectively. The economic analysis shows, however, that it is hard for highly efficient low temperature renewable based heat networks to compete with district heating systems based on a centralized fossile CHP solution. Thus, though the presented transformation is technically possible, there is a strong need to change existing economic schemes and policies for fostering a stronger promotion of renewable energy policies in the heat sector. View Full-Text
Keywords: low temperature district heating system; district heating retrofit; heating sector decarbonisation; dynamic district heating modelling; power to heat; levelized cost of heat low temperature district heating system; district heating retrofit; heating sector decarbonisation; dynamic district heating modelling; power to heat; levelized cost of heat
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MDPI and ACS Style

Durán, P.; Torio, H.; Schönfeldt, P.; Klement, P.; Hanke, B.; von Maydell, K.; Agert, C. Technology Pathways and Economic Analysis for Transforming High Temperature to Low Temperature District Heating Systems. Energies 2021, 14, 3218. https://doi.org/10.3390/en14113218

AMA Style

Durán P, Torio H, Schönfeldt P, Klement P, Hanke B, von Maydell K, Agert C. Technology Pathways and Economic Analysis for Transforming High Temperature to Low Temperature District Heating Systems. Energies. 2021; 14(11):3218. https://doi.org/10.3390/en14113218

Chicago/Turabian Style

Durán, Pedro, Herena Torio, Patrik Schönfeldt, Peter Klement, Benedikt Hanke, Karsten von Maydell, and Carsten Agert. 2021. "Technology Pathways and Economic Analysis for Transforming High Temperature to Low Temperature District Heating Systems" Energies 14, no. 11: 3218. https://doi.org/10.3390/en14113218

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