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Sustainable Urban Planning with Innovative and Low Energy Thermal and Power Generation from Residual and Renewable Sources

Project Details

Project date: 
November, 2013 to October, 2017
Contact Person: 
Maider Epelde
Tecnalia Research & Innovation

Budget Information

EU contribution: 
Total cost : 
Funding programme: 
2- Large scale systems for urban area heating and/or cooling supply

Pilot Cities

  1. Graz
  2. Brescia

The PITAGORAS project focuses on the efficient integration of city districts with industrial parks through smart thermal grids. Technologies and concepts for low and medium temperature waste heat recovery, considering as well integration with renewable energy sources (RES), and heat (and power) supply to cities will be developed and demonstrated.

As many of the technologies and concepts considered in the PITAGORAS project are not yet widely regarded as a reliable heating energy source (even they are already proven technologies), the application of these measures often fails even before cost issues are discussed. To change this negative view, best practice projects are essential. The two demonstration plants that will be built and monitored as part of this project will make a significant contribution towards achieving this goal.

The overall objective of the project is to demonstrate a highly replicable, cost-effective and high energy efficiency large scale energy generation system that will allow sustainable urban planning of very low-energy city districts.

The following systems and concepts will be developed:

  • Waste heat recovery systems
  • Organic Rankine Cycle for heat and power generation
  • Seasonal thermal energy storage system
  • Solar thermal energy
  • Innovative tools for efficient energy management of the system

The concept of the project will be demonstrated at two different European cities: Brescia (Italy) and Graz (Austria).

  • Demonstration plant in Brescia: medium/high temperature waste heat recovery (≈600ºC) from a steel foundry and ORC unit (2.1 MWe) for heat and power generation. It will be connected to the existing city district heating network.
  • Demonstration plant in Graz: Large scale solar thermal plant (≈10.000m2) with seasonal thermal energy storage (≈40.000m3). The system will also use waste heat from nearby industry and it will be connected to the existing city district heating network.

SRT data