Author Archives: Heatunderyourfeet


New EU research tool makes energy planning for governments easier

An EU-funded research project has launched a tool that allows European governments, businesses, consultants, academics, planners and energy enthusiasts to assess thermal resources and thermal demand in any given region.

The Pan-European Thermal Atlas (Peta4), launched today in Brussels, is an interactive online map of the heating and cooling demand, efficiency and supply in Europe. Created by the Heat Roadmap Europe (HRE) project, it provides visual and technical data for heating and cooling projects, giving users an appropriate analysis tool and easier access to relevant data.

David Connolly, HRE project coordinator, said: “For years, power plants, industry, and waste incinerators all across Europe have been throwing away enormous quantities of heat and for the most part, this has gone unnoticed. Peta4 enables policymakers, planners, suppliers and researchers to identify hotspots so they can replace the energy created by fossil fuel boilers with this excess heat instead.”

Connolly added: “It’s amazing how much heat is being wasted in cities that currently spend millions on natural gas to heat their buildings. This tool will help save money, carbon emissions, and energy consumption. Cities can meet their EU energy targets while also cutting costs for consumers.”

Peta4 covers the 14 EU member states that are part of the Heat Roadmap Europe project. Developed by project partners at Halmstad University, European University Flensburg, and Aalborg University, it creates maps with specific and realistic data on the location and scale of heat demand and excess heat, which will facilitate the development of energy system solutions across Europe.

Users can search for a specific location, to analyse the feasibility of a project in an area and assess where, for example, district heating or heat pumps could be economically viable. Peta4 contains a 100 m resolution grid of the modelled heat demand in 2015, which visualises where district heating networks could be implemented. This is combined with a layer presenting the excess heat supply available from various large-scale plants and industries, to show how these new district heating networks could supply their heat demand.

The maps use openly accessible spatial geo-data from the European Commission, the European Environmental Agency and Eurostat. They are produced and funded under the framework of the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme.

To access the Peta4 maps, visit:


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Choosing renewable heating and cooling systems: new online tools for consumers

The FROnT project is presenting several new tools aimed at supporting consumers to make informed choices on available heating and cooling systems for their households or small enterprises. The tools, available online, will help end-users to assess the competitiveness of renewable energy technologies (biomass, solar thermal, air-source heat pumps, and ground-source heat pumps) against traditional fossil fuels, and to evaluate which renewable solution is a better fit for their needs.

The Renewable Heating and Cooling (RHC) Costs’ Calculation Tool has been developed to facilitate transparency and comparability of heating and cooling options. Based on the comparison of levelized costs of heating and cooling, the tool allows to estimate costs, payback period, and the environmental benefits of RHC technologies through a user-friendly interface. The methodology followed for the development of the tool is the result of an assessment of existing studies combined with the dialogue between FROnT partners and national experts.

The RHC Costs’ Calculation Tool is accompanied by a series of Guidelines on the use of the RHC costs’ estimation methodology and by a set of Frequently Asked Questions.

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Decarbonising the heating and cooling sector: “Strategic Policy Priorities for Renewable Heating and Cooling in Europe”

The FROnT project published a paper with strategic policy recommendations to support the deployment of renewable heating and cooling technologies (RES-HC). It starts with analysing the main barriers that are currently hampering the deployment of renewable heating and cooling technologies and proposes a set of policy recommendations for EU, national and local policy-makers to overcome these barriers.

The heating and cooling sector represents almost 50% of our energy consumption and is therefore key to decarbonise our entire energy system. RES-HC such as geothermal, solar thermal, biomass and heat pumps are today mature and available options to replace fossil fuels. However, important barriers remain, and multiple policy instruments are necessary for addressing the impediments that are preventing the uptake of renewable energy technologies.

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ThermoMap Viewer and ThermoMap Calculator now available on the Heat Under Your Feet website

As from today, two important tools for the development of shallow geothermal installations are also available on the Heat Under Your Feet website: the ThermoMap Viewer and the ThermoMap calculator.

The tools were created in the framework of the ThermoMap project with the objective of providing an estimation of very Shallow Geothermal Potential (vSGP) across Europe. The project harmonised pre-existing data sets relating to geological, hydrogeological, soil, climate and relief geodata with standarised methods, and then used the data to build an open source web GIS that everyone can use to check the vSGP in a certain area. Samples were taken from fourteen test areas in nine different countries: Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Romania and the UK.

Click here to access the tools.

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How to develop support schemes for Renewable Heating and Cooling

The FROnT manual of good practices provides guidance for policy makers establishing successful support schemes for renewable heating and cooling. It does so in order to help them effectively deliver competitive, affordable, and sustainable solutions for consumers and at the national level.

The manual covers technical, economical, financial, legal and marketing aspects, and provides solutions according to various market conditions. It addresses the key success factors for support schemes and gives recommendations to policy makers and civil servants in ensuring long term development, designing and implementing, and evaluating schemes.

Download the report

The external costs of using fossil fuels such as air pollution, and climate change, and the positive externalities of renewables are not currently reflected in the market price of energy. It is therefore necessary to introduce measures to correct market failures, and increase consumer and industry confidence.

Responsible for half of European energy consumption and siginificant fossil fuel imports, the heating and cooling sector must be addressed in the transition towards secure, affordable, and decarbonised energy system.

Based on assessments of 28 schemes in nine Member States, and developed with public authorities, energy agencies, and industry experts, the report has been published by the FROnT project which is developing tools and studies on how to deploy more Renewable Heating and Cooling.

The main factors which are critical to the success of a support scheme are the contribution of different stakeholders, stability and predictability, transparency and accountability, a balance between financial adequacy and efficiency, and the assurance of quality and performance.

Other important elements are non-burdensome administrative procedures, support to applicants, and good communication and marketing.

To ensure long term development and a sufficiently broad range of technologies, instruments must differ according to market conditions and the technical characteristics and maturity of each technology. Schemes should run for at least five years. Confilicting subsidies, for example to fossil fuels, should be avoided.

When designing and implementing schemes, the allocation method and level depends very much on the target group, but some factors are common to all. Schemes must be flexible and include a revision mechanism in order to be adaptable to falling technology costs. Controls must be put in place to ensure quality and performance in order to build consumer confidence in renewable technology. On-going reviews should be put in place to ensure that administrative costs are kept to the minimum for both the consumer and the provider, and that complaints are dealt with swiftly.

The periodic evaluation of schemes is important to ensure that policy objectives are being met, and should be used to keep consumers and policy makers well aware of the impact of the scheme.

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Public Consultation: What makes an RHC support Scheme Successful?

The FROnT project is conducting a public consultation to further assess the factors which make schemes and policies for Renewable Heating and Cooling (RHC) successful. The results will be used to establish how future schemes should be designed and implemented.

This survey  is for any industry stakeholder involved in or impacted by schemes related to RHC. The consultation will close on 15th April.

Take Part


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Submit a paper for the 12th IEA heat Pump conference

The 12th IEA Heat Pump Conference aims to cover all aspects of heat pumping technologies in the various markets ranging from domestic buildings to industrial processes. The Conference will have invited speakers as well as speakers from a call for papers, where researchers are encouraged to give their opinions and show their latest developments.

All abstracts are to be submitted online and should be a maximum of 250 words. Submissions will be considered for platform and poster presentations.
Topics include:

  • Residential heat pumps focusing on: Nearly Zero Energy Buildings; Technologies for Renovation; Hybrid Heat Pumps; Domestic Hot Water Heat Pumps; Multi Family Buildings
  • Non-residential heat pumps focusing on: Air Conditioning, Smart grids/energy; District Heating; Industrial Heat Pumps; Waste Heat Recovery; Commercial Buildings; Greenhouses.
  • Innovation and R&D focusing on technology topics like: Ground sources; Advanced storage systems; Working fluids; Combination with other renewable technologies; Sorption technologies; Non vapour Compression; Cold climate heat pumps; Air Conditioning; Gas driven heat pumps

Submission closes 1 May, 2016

visit to find out more

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Overall cost reductions of 18% possible for GSHPs in a mass market scenario

The UK Government has released a report into the scope
for cost reduction for Geothermal Heat pumps in a mass
market. The report states that:

“In a UK “mass market” scenario for Ground Source
Heat Pumps (GSHP), we would expect an overall cost
reduction of ~18% compared to current costs. This
would be comprised of ~30% cost reduction in nonequipment
costs, and 5-10% in equipment costs. GSHP
cost in 2014 is split roughly equally between nonequipment
costs and equipment costs (excluding VAT).”

The full report can be found on the government website

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European Geothermal Congress

19-24th September 2016

A unique opportunity for the entire geothermal community to come together and to learn, finding new ways to progress.

Organised every 3 years, EGC is the largest geothermal event in Europe.
It is a week of varied events designed to appeal and support and develop everyone working in the field, both in and outside the continent.
It will include:

  • A Conference programme with both oral and poster presentations;
  • Contributions from local, European, and Global leaders;
  • Sessions covering science and research, education, policy, financing, and communication;
  • A large industry exhibition;
  • Specialised sessions on business development;
  • Training courses;
  • Site visits to geothermal projects (incl. EGS) in the region;
  • Networking events;
  • and much more!
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12th IEA Heat Pump Conference

Rotterdam, The Netherlands. 15-18th May 2017

From 15th – 18th of May 2017 the International Energy Agency organizes its 12th Heat Pump Conference at the World Trade Centre in Rotterdam. A conference where the latest development and prospects in technology, applications and markets are shared with applied professionals.

To find out more visit

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