Author: BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg

When it comes to low-temperature district heating (LTDH), the major challenges are not so much related to technical issues but often connected to economic or organisational aspects. Investments in LTDH seem to be a financial burden during the realisation phase and funding schemes seem to be missing.

In the case of non-prioritized economic viability, it is necessary to demonstrate the economic viability gap in terms of investment and the amount of unprofitable costs. For this purpose, an objective, transparent, and effective procedure was developed by BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg (Germany) and with the help of project partners from Gulbene municipality (Latvia), AGFW-Project GmbH (Germany), and Thermopolis Ltd (Finland) within the frame of the LowTEMP project.

The output consists of an Excel-based tool, a manual (to be downloaded soon), and an analysis:

  • With the Excel-based tool, future stakeholders such as municipal actors, district heat suppliers, funding authorities, and potential investors are able to determine the profitability and, if present, to calculate the funding gap of a project based on the internal rate of return and net present value of an investment over a period of 20 years. The user has the freedom to configure investments in either grid, generating plant, or both. Up to three different types of generating plants can be chosen out of a variety of different technologies but own settings are possible, too. In order to verify the comprehensibility, user-friendliness, and functionality of the tool, project partner Gulbene municipality (Latvia) tested it on their pilot measure.
  • The manual provides the user with information on how to use the tool and what information is needed in order to do so.
  • The analysis gives deeper insight into the current state of technology and knowledge on economic efficiency and funding gaps of LTDH systems, as well as on the development of the tool and the manual.

All documents will be available in English soon.