Bristol City Council are undertaking the installation of a number of district heating networks across Bristol. The first phase of the works facilitate the new supply of heat and electrical power from a new energy centre within 100 Temple Street as well as heat export to the local heat network.
ATS were appointed to deliver a new level of energy efficiency and take the cities sustainability to new heights.
Heat networks are firmly established in many other European countries, accounting for 60% of the heat market in Denmark, 49% in Finland, 18% in Austria and 12% in Germany. However, in the UK they currently meet less than 2% of heat demand. Despite this, the UK government has outlined ambitious plans for heat networks in the UK with results from DECC modelling indicated that up to 20% of UK domestic heat demand could be served by heat networks by 2030.
Once heat networks are installed, these benefits will be experienced by a wide range of people in Bristol, for example:
- Businesses and public sector bodies will have access to lower energy prices.
- Social housing tenants will have access to cheaper heat.
- The city will benefit from reduced carbon emissions and better energy security.
- Local people will benefit in the long-term from better energy infrastructure in the city.
Although the type of controls associated with each new component of the heat network is specified within the initial design, the technology required for the interfacing of the systems legacy proprietary systems at 100 Temple Street is unproven and untested.
In order for the heat network to work efficiently it is necessary to route packets of information in real time from the existing system to the new systems and vice versa. However, as the existing systems are obsolete it was not possible to obtain versions of the same hardware and adequately bench test this interfacing before installation or commissioning.
Therefore, In order to deliver on the Councils ultimate goal of improving energy efficiency, considerable testing of the different control procedures has been required to replicate heat loads under several outside ambient conditions and simulate the different outcomes, observe how quickly the legacy systems are to react and their capability in communicating with the newer systems to ensure design specifications are adhered to.