HEAT 4.0 – Digitalization creates measurable efficiency results in the district heating sector

By Alfred Heller - HEAT 4.0 Project Manager NIRAS, Eva Lange Rasmussen - Communication consultant NIRAS, Per Sieverts Nielsen - Senior Researcher, Ph.D. DTU, Henrik Madsen - Professor, Head of Department of Applied Mathematics and Computer Science DTU Compute

District heating utilities have long used consumption data and prognoses to plan their production and meet the local heat demand. But to achieve more operational goals, the use of large amounts of existing data has been limited. The HEAT 4.0 project has therefore set this on the agenda and has successfully demonstrated new methods and an open digital platform where IT and OT can meet in new harmonies.

The main objective of the implementation of digitalization was to create environmental, operational, and economic effi- ciency for district heating companies. HEAT 4.0 addressed the digital needs of the entire sector, from the production site to distribution to energy consumption – and it has created synergy between the design, operation, maintenance, and supply of district heating on a new and unprecedented digital level. The invented solution is called Cross System Optimization (CSO) and has been created in close collaboration between the project's 16 partners: component suppliers, researchers, district heating compa- nies, and software developers.

HEAT 4.0 started in 2019 and was a 3-year project supported by Innovation Fund Denmark.

Software customization In the project, three district heating companies were involved: Hillerød Utility, Brønderslev Utility, and TREFOR, who each demanded that the project add genuine efficiency improve- ments to the district heating system, from which all heating companies could benefit. The standard digital procedure is that each district heating company installs and integrates the software systems they would like to use in their own district heating operation - with-

14 HOTCOOL no.8 2022

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