District Heating: How industrial waste heat can become a sales hit

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Industrial plants produce heat that often goes unused. Energy suppliers, however, would benefit from feeding industrial waste heat into their district heating networks. With this in mind, Bilfinger has co-developed a concept that creates a win-win situation: The concept relies on the intelligent integration of industrial waste heat into the district heating supply.

How can industrial waste heat contribute to the sustainable heating of cities and communities? “Waste heat can make a huge contribution,” thought Christian Strondl. The Managing Director of Bilfinger Industrial Services therefore worked on a solution that would allow industrial companies to determine precisely how much waste heat they generate – and how much of it they could sell to municipal energy suppliers for their mutual benefit. 

This thought process resulted in the “ScaleGrid” concept. It analyzes the potential of various heat sources and at the same time shows possibilities for their use as an energy source. Bilfinger is cooperating with two partners in the implementation:

  • IT specialist ProCom, based in Aachen, Germany, provides comprehensive analyses of the energy market and price developments. Using this as a basis, municipal utilities and plant operators can decide whether and when it makes sense for them to do business with each other – in other words, when they should buy or sell waste heat.
  • The Vienna-based consulting firm Decision Advisory Group brings industrial companies and utilities together at one table and manages communication with all stakeholder groups. 
  • Bilfinger ensures the optimal use of energy. This involves improving heat flows in the plant, identifying possible savings and evaluating whether and to what extent industrial waste heat can be used in the district heating network.

“A key factor in the success of ScaleGrid is the interaction of all relevant players,” says Strondl. From the initial contact with the city to talks with local industry and transparent public relations, the concept follows a defined process, the goal of which is to ensure that all parties benefit. “In this way, we achieve broad acceptance and offer a forward-looking solution for municipal heat supply, from which plant operators in particular can also benefit considerably,” says Strondl.

Your contact for questions:

Christian Strondl
Managing Director, COO Bilfinger
Industrial Services GmbH
Phone +43 664 6157654

Dr. Ala Modarresi
Engineering Plant Technology
Bilfinger Bohr- und Rohrtechnik GmbH
Phone +43 664 6157657

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