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Special Issue "Recent Studies in District Heating and Cooling Systems"

A special issue of Energies (ISSN 1996-1073). This special issue belongs to the section "F: Energy and Buildings".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (10 January 2021) | Viewed by 6180

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Ahmad Arabkoohsar
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Energy Technology, Aalborg University, Aalborg, Denmark
Interests: energy; exergy; thermodynamics; renewable energy systems
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Meisam Sadi
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Energy Technology, Aalborg University, Aalborg, Denmark
Interests: cooling processes; renewable energy; energy systems; CFD and heat transfer
Prof. Dr. Hossein Nami
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Maragheh, Maragheh, Iran
Interests: sustainable energy sources; thermodynamics; exergy analysis; district heating/cooling

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In future energy systems, the high integration of different energy sectors and energy systems will be vital. Thus, district heating (DH) and cooling (DC) networks will be as important as electricity grids. This has brought special attention of researchers in these areas to further contribute to the advancement of the state-of-the-art. This covers a wide range of research themes including novel designs for the fundamental structures of these distributed energy systems, proposals for increasing the cost or technical effectiveness of the existing systems, techno-economic analyses of case studies hosting DH and DC systems, using artificial intelligence or demand-side management for optimal operation of these systems, so on and so forth.

This special issue aims at attracting cutting-edge research and review articles on DH and DC systems. Topics of Interest include, but are and not limited to, the following:

  • Novel concepts and designs in DH and DC systems
  • Innovative solutions for the improvement of the existing DH and DC designs
  • Integration of renewable-based co-generation or trigeneration systems to DH and DC systems
  • Passive and active performance enhancement techniques on DH and DC system components
  • The use of centralized or decentralized energy storage systems in DH and DC systems
  • Optimization methods for optimal operation or planning in DH and DC systems
  • Dynamic modeling and cost analysis of DH and DC systems
  • Technical and economic investigations of case studies for the implementation of DH and DC systems

Prof. Dr. Ahmad Arabkoohsar
Dr. Meisam Sadi
Prof. Dr. Hossein Nami
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Energies is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Article
Demand Response Control of Space Heating in Three Different Building Types in Finland and Germany
Energies 2020, 13(23), 6296; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13236296 - 29 Nov 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 811
Abstract
Demand response has been noted as a major element of future smart energy systems. However, there is still a lack of knowledge about the demand response actions in different conditions—including climate, dynamic energy price, and building types. This study examines energy and cost [...] Read more.
Demand response has been noted as a major element of future smart energy systems. However, there is still a lack of knowledge about the demand response actions in different conditions—including climate, dynamic energy price, and building types. This study examines energy and cost saving potential of the rule-based demand response in district heating network, in three different building types, in Germany and Finland. The studied building types are apartment buildings, cultural centers, and office buildings. The real-time pricing-based demand response is applied to space heating under the climate conditions of Helsinki, Finland and Hamburg, Germany. Moreover, the typical synthetic dynamic price data, which are based on both counties’ district heating production structure, is applied separately for each countries’ cases. Simulations of this study are conducted with validated simulation tool IDA ICE. The results present that the demand response can provide energy and cost savings around 0.5–7.7% and 0.7–8.1% respectively, depending on the building type and country. The results indicate that marginal value of the control signal, climate conditions, and the dynamic price of the district heating have effect on the demand response saving potential. Flatter district heating price profile provides less savings than a more fluctuating profile. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Studies in District Heating and Cooling Systems)
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Article
Does the Balance Exist between Cost Efficiency of Different Energy Efficiency Measures? DH Systems Case
Energies 2020, 13(19), 5151; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13195151 - 02 Oct 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 763
Abstract
The main aim of this study is to evaluate the results achieved by implementation of different support policies in form of subsidies for energy efficiency improvements and transition to renewable energy sources. The article compares the energy efficiency measures in district heating systems [...] Read more.
The main aim of this study is to evaluate the results achieved by implementation of different support policies in form of subsidies for energy efficiency improvements and transition to renewable energy sources. The article compares the energy efficiency measures in district heating systems with other support program. In order to assess the effectiveness of implementation of different renewable energy technologies and energy efficiency projects, the levelized costs of saved energy for different support programs were determined. Authors compared different co-financed projects related to replacement of fossil fuel energy sources in district heating (mainly to biomass) and the installation of new biomass boilers, heat pumps, solar collectors and other local technologies in municipal buildings. Results show that financial support for energy efficiency measures in industrial enterprises and district heating systems has been most cost-effective, mainly due to the low co-financing rate (30%) and the high potential for energy savings in different production processes. Authors have identified the blind-spots within the funding allocation for different municipalities, which is not always dedicated to achieved energy savings. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Studies in District Heating and Cooling Systems)
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Article
Method for Assessing Heat Loss in A District Heating Network with A Focus on the State of Insulation and Actual Demand for Useful Energy
Energies 2020, 13(17), 4505; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13174505 - 01 Sep 2020
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 913
Abstract
The goal of this paper was to evaluate heat loss and the demand of district heating (DH) in the context of the fourth generation DH concept using a data-driven approach. The heat loss profile was calculated with GIS Zulu© (software (8.0.0.7539, Politerm, LLC, [...] Read more.
The goal of this paper was to evaluate heat loss and the demand of district heating (DH) in the context of the fourth generation DH concept using a data-driven approach. The heat loss profile was calculated with GIS Zulu© (software (8.0.0.7539, Politerm, LLC, St.Petersburg, Russia) using eight various states of insulation, detailed information on thermal conductivity, internal heat transfer coefficient, and geometry of the concrete trench. There is a strong correlation between the heat sold and the average annual outdoor temperatures. The outstanding episodes are extremely rare, and the difference in the overall pattern is elusive. The results of the annual heat production and annual heat loss analyses were compared using three different estimation methods. The new method was the only one that showed a positive effect after the complete modernization of thermal insulation. The actual proportion of heat loss is much higher at 16%, while the actual heat delivery is less than anticipated at 85–86% only. The trend of the normative approach is correct but cannot determine changes in network heat loss due to aging. The method focuses on the effects of the state of insulation and actual supply temperature levels. The transition to smart energy systems includes strategic and progressive energy planning, as well as new pricing rules and tariffs. Thus, the method presented is the first step in the transition towards the fourth generation DH networks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Studies in District Heating and Cooling Systems)
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Article
Potential of Thermal Energy Storage for a District Heating System Utilizing Industrial Waste Heat
Energies 2020, 13(15), 3923; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13153923 - 31 Jul 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1196
Abstract
The potential for utilizing industrial waste heat for district heating is enormous. There is, however, often a temporal mismatch between the waste heat availability and the heating demand, and typically fossil-based peak boilers are used to cover the remaining heat demand. This study [...] Read more.
The potential for utilizing industrial waste heat for district heating is enormous. There is, however, often a temporal mismatch between the waste heat availability and the heating demand, and typically fossil-based peak boilers are used to cover the remaining heat demand. This study investigates the potential of applying a thermal energy storage tank at the district heating supply system at Mo Industrial Park in Norway, where waste heat from the off-gas of a ferrosilicon production plant is the main heating source. To cover peak heating demands, boilers based on CO gas, electricity, and oil are applied. The reduction in peak heating costs and emissions is evaluated as a function of tank size for two different scenarios: (1) a scenario where CO gas, which is a byproduct from another nearby industry, is the main peak heating source; and (2) a scenario where no CO gas is available, and electricity is the main peak heating source. The highest economic viability is obtained with the smallest storage tank with a volume of 1000 m3, yielding a payback period of 7.1/16.2 years and a reduction in total heat production costs of 14.6/10.0% for Scenarios 1/2, respectively. The reduction in CO2 emissions is 19.4/14.8%, equal to 820/32 ton CO2 for the analyzed period. Sensitivity analysis shows a significant reduction in payback period for Scenario 2 with increasing electricity prices, while the payback period in Scenario 1 is most sensitive to the emission factors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Studies in District Heating and Cooling Systems)
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Article
Utilization of Excess Production of Waste-Fired CHP Plants for District Cooling Supply, an Effective Solution for a Serious Challenge
Energies 2020, 13(13), 3319; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13133319 - 29 Jun 2020
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 966
Abstract
District heating-connected waste incineration plants face a serious operating challenge during the warmer months of the year when the heating load is quite low. The challenge is the difficulty of managing the extra municipal solid waste to be disposed of, exposing great pressure [...] Read more.
District heating-connected waste incineration plants face a serious operating challenge during the warmer months of the year when the heating load is quite low. The challenge is the difficulty of managing the extra municipal solid waste to be disposed of, exposing great pressure and cost on the plant. Conventionally, the solution is either burning the surplus waste and providing the extra cooling required for the condenser with a summer chiller and paying the tax of the total heat generation of the plant, or paying other industries to burn the waste for their specific applications. Both of these solutions are, however, costly. In this study, to address this challenge the utilization of the extra available resources of waste incineration plants for district cooling supply is proposed. Then, the proposed solution is analyzed from the thermodynamic and economic points of view. The feasibility of the proposal is investigated for a real waste incineration plant in Denmark and its 50 neighboring office/service buildings as the case study. The simulations are done based on real hourly data of the plant and economic parameters. The results show that for the case study for a plant with a thermal capacity of 73 MW, a district cooling with a peak load of over 20 MW could be perfectly supplied. The payback period of the proposed solution, including the cost of piping, absorption chiller, etc., can be as short as five years. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Studies in District Heating and Cooling Systems)
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Review

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Review
Roadblocks to Low Temperature District Heating
Energies 2020, 13(22), 5893; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13225893 - 12 Nov 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1032
Abstract
Energy usage in buildings is coming increasingly under the spotlight as carbon policy focus shifts towards the utilization of thermal energy. In the UK, heating and hot water accounts for around 40% of energy consumption and 20% of greenhouse gas emissions. Heating is [...] Read more.
Energy usage in buildings is coming increasingly under the spotlight as carbon policy focus shifts towards the utilization of thermal energy. In the UK, heating and hot water accounts for around 40% of energy consumption and 20% of greenhouse gas emissions. Heating is typically produced onsite, making widescale carbon or energetic improvements challenging. District heating networks (DHNs) can offer significant carbon reduction for many users but can only be implemented if the end user buildings have good thermal energy efficiency. This greatly limits the ability to implement advancing 4th and 5th generation DHNs, which are the most advanced systems available. We elucidate the current state of thermal efficiency in buildings in the UK and provide recommendations for necessary building requirements and modifications in order to accommodate 4th and 5th generation district heating. We conclude that key sectors must be addressed including creating a skilled workforce, producing relevant metrics and benchmarks, and providing financial support for early stage design exploration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Studies in District Heating and Cooling Systems)
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