ThermaFLEX – Heat supply of the future

SOLID Solar Energy Systems GmbH participated in the flagship project ThermaFLEX. The project dealt with increasing energy flexibility and resulting CO₂-emission reductions in the district heating sector.

The district heating network of tomorrow has already been tested today within the ThermaFLEX project. The Austrian Funding Agency (FFG) funded flagship project demonstrated with concrete solutions how the existing heat pipeline infrastructure can be used efficiently and how it can be expanded. By integrating local renewable energy sources into the district heating network, the decarbonisation of this sector could be significantly advanced. Based on demonstration projects with 28 partners in Styria, Salzburg and Vienna, it was shown that large-scale implementations are also possible in relatively short time.

With a project volume of around 4.6 million Euro, the ThermaFLEX research project was one of the largest projects to date in the Austrian “Vorzeigeregion Energie” programme of the Climate and Energy Fund and the largest to date in the Austrian district heating sector.

The aim of the 28 industry and research partners in ThermaFLEX was to use the demonstrators to decarbonize the district heating supply and at the same time making it affordable and resilient.

SOLID was able to expand its expertise in hydraulic challenges of the district heating system in the Styrian city of Mürzzuschlag that has to cope with large differences in altitude due to its location in the mountains. Good solutions were found for the challenging integration of a large-scale solar plant at the end of the heating grid. The project also sought and found optimised solutions for the interaction of biomass and solar thermal generation – two renewable sources that need more engineering for system integration than e.g., a gas boiler. This expert knowledge will be applied in future projects of SOLID.

Statement by Theresia Vogel, Managing Director Climate and Energy Funds Austria:

“Heat grids are excellently suited for the integration of renewable energies as well as waste heat and enable coupling with other energy sectors or energy infrastructures. In this context, it is important to balance the differences between generation and consumption through flexible storage capacities and intelligent control strategies”.

Links for further information: 

The project consortium:

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