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The use of industrial waste heat is essential for the decarbonisation of heat supply. While the electricity transmission grid connects many generation, storage and consumption units, current options for waste heat injection and interregional exchange are limited. Heat Highway is therefore investigating interregional heat transfer networks (HTN), which combines four areas: industrial waste heat and other sustainable sources, district heating networks, industrial process heat sinks and storage. These HTNs connect consumption centers and industrial sites, by travelling through areas with other heat sources and sinks. The project reduces risks by including many supply and demand nodes and creating innovative business models. The concept will go far beyond the state of the art in terms of the number of actors, interregionality and networking.
„District heating transmission networks are the “third dimension” missing from a sustainable, highly efficient, exergy-oriented energy system, alongside the large electricity and gas grids.“
Heat Highway is developing two 100 km HTN in Upper Austria and Styria and is advancing three sections towards practical implementation: it is preparing KPC investment funding applications for the Upper Austrian HTN sections “Central Region” and “Linz” and initialising the next steps and the stakeholder participation in Styria. Heat Highway aims to develop an interdisciplinary toolbox for HTN implementation, to anticipate the medium-term use of waste heat from innovative processes and finally, to develop a cost-effective pipe system.
One highlight of the project will be the „Lean-Pipe-Prototype “, that will show the technical controllability of a system with several players of a “virtual HTN demonstrator” based on 3D simulations. The fact that the system is tested in four “follower regions” ensures reproducibility.
Das Projekt Heat Highway trägt zu den NEFI-Innovationsfeldern „Industry to Grid“, „System Solutions & Infrastructure“ und „New Business Models“ bei.
The project Heat Highway was officially launched with a kick-off in mid-March. Under the consortium leadership of the Energieinstitut of Johannes Kepler University Linz 17 partners from industry and research are working on the transformation of the Austrian energy system.
Despite numerous efforts to promote and address the issue, the proportion of women in technical professions remains low. During the week of the International Women’s Day, the NEFI Innovation Network will highlight successful female technicians. They are NEFI project managers or are pushing the decarbonisation of industry with their know-how and expertise.