HOT|COOL NO. 2/2019 - "Smart Heating System Integration"


a form of smart control, by which the connected buildings are used as a source of flexibility. The benefit about this form of smart control, is that large investments in additional installations (like large water storage buffer tanks e.g.) can be reduced: it makes use of already existing thermal capacity. One of the vital goals of the STORM project was to build technology that could be used in a practical setting. As a result of this, STORM technology was already deployed and used in commercial projects throughout Europe, even before the project actually ended. This shows not only the flexibility and adaptiveness of STORM, but also the actual market demand for this type of technology. An important part of the STORM development process was to create modular components, which was primarily materialised in the project as the Forecaster, Planner and Tracker. Each such individual component forms an important advance in technology for innovative district heating, and they can be deployed either separately or combined as a full STORM controller. Technology relating to the Forecaster was the first component to reach maturity in the STORM project, and consequently deployed in commercial projects. The Planner and Tracker followed thereafter, and all components are now mature enough to deploy in industrial settings.

Finally, it should be noticed that the market interaction control strategy can also be used for DHC systems without CHP, in which case the purpose is to avoid high production costs and premiere low costs. This versatility makes market interaction a powerful control strategy, and it now forms the foundation of several commercial spin-off projects based on the STORM technology. CELL BALANCING Although cell balancing was specifically developed for and studied in the Mijnwater demonstration case, the concept is also viable for more general distribution optimisation in generic grids in order to facilitate a more balanced distribution behaviour.

Since the Mijnwater system consists of a number of clusters connected to the backbone with all buildings connected to those clusters, there is the possibility of influencing supplying flow at both cluster level and building level (peak shaving). As a result of this, due to the higher activity of the heat pumps in the power plants, the temperature difference and thereby the capacity of the system (i.e. the clusters and/ or backbone) increases. This capacity increase not only creates room to connect more buildings to the system, but also offers the possibility of influencing the mutual exchange rate between buildings and/or clusters, in other words it facilitates cell balancing.

Figure 5: The final results of the STORM controller.

Although the STORM controller is a market-ready product, future developments are foreseen. Not only the additional control features are prepared, but with the same platform steps are taken into the field of analytics. As such, in the Horizon 2020 TEMPO project ( fault detection functionalities for substations are added to the platform. With this it is possible to detect and diagnose substations in the network that do not perform optimally.

From the evaluation of the tests performed, an improved capacity could be derived ranging from 37% up to 49%. The determined median value was 42.1% on capacity improvement. In the Mijnwater case, cell balancing and peak shaving will have a simultaneous effect that leads to a combined capacity improvement of 52% which corresponds with a total potential. CONCLUSIONS AND FUTURE PERSPECTIVE It is clear that demand side management in DH networks, as achieved by the STORM controller, will become increasingly important in the coming years during the transition towards 4G DH networks. The integration of sustainable heat (such as heat fromfluctuating renewable sources or excess heat from industry) can only be exploited to its full extend, when DH networks are controlled in a smart way. Demand side management is

Dirk Vanhoudt, For further information please contact:

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