Residential area uses solar thermal and district heating

The project Gutleutmatten in the German city of Freiburg will produce heat for a residential district using 2,287 m² of solar collectors. (Graphic: Office of city planning Freiburg im Breisgau)
The project Gutleutmatten in the German city of Freiburg will produce heat for a residential district using 2,287 m² of solar collectors. (Graphic: Office of city planning Freiburg im Breisgau)

A city district in the German town Freiburg will use a solar thermal system for heating and hot water production. During periods with low solar irradiation, the buildings will be supplied with heat from a district heating system.

Until 2018, approximately 500 new residential units will be built in Freiburg im Breisgau, a city in southwest Germany. With a heated floor space of roughly 40,000 m², the apartments will house about 1,300 people.

The Austrian solar thermal expert TiSun will supply thermal collectors with an area of nearly 2,300 m² for the installation of 34 single solar thermal systems on the roofs of these buildings. With an expected solar thermal heat generation of 700 MWh per year, the new systems will generate enough heat to supply the district during the summer months. When there is not enough sunlight to provide hot water and heat all the buildings, the houses will receive their heat from a cogeneration plant in the area.

The concept for the combination of district heating and solar thermal energy was developed by the regional energy service provider Badenova Wärmeplus in cooperation with the institute for solar energy systems Fraunhofer ISE. The institute will accompany and analyse the development of the urban district to collect new insights that could prove useful in later projects. The German Federal Environment Ministry supports the € 3.5 million project with € 330,000.

Tanja Peschel

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