Considering cities account for over 70% of the world’s energy use (half of which are for satisfying thermal needs), district energy networks have an immense role to play in establishing smart, affordable and low-carbon energy solutions. Unfortunately, due to the widespread use of unsustainable materials, incorrect dimensioning, or skyrocketing time and investment costs, the installation or renovation of District Heating and Cooling (DHC) systems have quite some way to go. Thermaflex’ newest district innovation provides solace.
From dream to reality
In 2010, when Thermaflex really dedicated a full focus to future-oriented, sustainable concepts - not only in terms of operation, but also installation - Thermaflex set out to tackle these challenges with a single solution. What at first sounded like a utopian dream, is now a reality put to practice: Street in a Day: a fully pre-fabricated district heating network solution on coil to connect an entire street of houses in just a single day.
FlexaNet has been developed based on a flexible pre-insulated piping system with complete homogeneous weldability. This allows for customized prefabrication with 70% of the housing connections readily attached on a 100% clean and controlled factory floor, before being checked and tested with compressed air. These prefabricated sections can be very easily installed at building sites by simply uncoiling them into the trench, hooking up the individual houses. This design for simplicity allows for district heating projects to be implemented at 30% less installation cost, 4-5 times quicker in time and at minimal disturbance.
For more information and details on FlexaNet please click here.
Proof of concept
The first pilot project with Street in Day was launched in 2013 in the Dutch city of Hengelo at the absolute world record of just 1 day. At the end of 2014 Thermaflex was able to confirm that the performance in Hengelo was not a matter of luck as in the Tyrolean town of Wörgl they were able to connect 20 houses to the biomass-powered district heating network in just a few hours.
"Street in a day" is not only about time and cost savings. Also very much at the core of this concept is the Thermaflex’ objective to establish sustainable energy systems with high ecological value while at the same time ensuring a high, and reliable level of comfort for residents. Not only today, but also with future generations in mind.