Subtask C: Description of Existing and Innovative Technologies, Architecture and Selected Calculation Tools for Performance of Energy Conversion and Distribution Systems (Electrical and Thermal)

The choice between decentralized heating and/or cooling energy supply options for individual buildings, and central options for whole communities, neighborhoods, or clusters of buildings depends largely on local drivers such as energy demand densities, existing networks, building systems configurations, etc. In addition, the selection can also be highly dependent on critical operations/mission assurance needs of the subset of the mission-critical facilities. As a result, the feasibility of scenarios will be evaluated holistically, considering both economic and mission assurance factors.

Feasibility analyses will consider various scenarios, including combinations (and types and sizes) of energy generation equipment; and system architectures needed to meet load profiles, based on heating, cooling, and power load demands. Load profiles will be derived for individual buildings, building clusters, or subsets of buildings comprised of mission-critical facilities and associated generation equipment types. When evaluated in combination with energy system architectures, optimum solutions will be identified to maximize resilience to power, energy demand reduction and thermal energy supply disruption scenarios. Approaches and technologies will be selected based on the community-specific needs for resilience and economic factors.

Technologies to be selected from can include traditional solution (high efficient boilers, chillers, power generation turbines), the state-of-the-art technologies (e.g., efficient heat pumps, combined cooling, heat and power (CCHP) with ad-/absorption cooling systems, power-to-heat, electrical and thermal storage systems, microgrids, usage of waste heat, regenerative technologies) or a combination of those. Existing fossil fuel-based technologies for central plants can be combined with technologies using energy from renewable sources integrated with external grids or community level thermal and power storage. Throughout the energy planning horizon, fossil fuel-based technologies can be phased out. Ideally, one can account for all technologies and system elements that are available and that can be parameterized in a database used as input to the core of the energy master planning modeling tool (red in Figure 2). However, to reduce the spectrum of possible solutions and thereby simplify the applicability and operability of the optimization process, a preselection of system elements and corresponding system configurations in specific scenarios is advisable. Scenarios can be presented in a uniform way using a common template to include technical  schemes, pictures of critical elements and a brief concept description, with its application and limitations. Figure 2 details the methodology for the development of these scenarios.

Scenario descriptions (presented in a template form) —and other elements— will be used as input to the core of the modeling tool (Subtask E). As a result, the preliminary scenarios will become concretized and refined. Comparing and assessing these elaborated scenarios by means of strategic instruments (SWOT [Strengths, Weaknesses Opportunities, Threats] analysis, etc.) and based upon compliance with prioritized objectives, recommendation and guidance can be formulated.

Figure 3 shows an example of system configuration for a military garrison. Apart from other (legal, financial etc.) boundary conditions, one central constraint for the military community is the energy supply to mission-critical facilities. Using threat-impact analysis, requirements for ensuring a predefined and facility-specific level of (heat, electricity) supply can be derived. These requirements implicitly determine minimum storage and back-up capacities or restrict the choice of other, quantifiable indicators of energy resilience.


Figure 2.  Methodology for development of scenario templates and subtask-overlapping workflow (core of modeling tool in red)


Figure 3.  Exemplary energy supply system in a military garrison with mission-critical facilities including redundant heat and/or electricity supply (marked in red).


Subtask C deliverables are described as:

  1. A database of technology options will be assembled that can be used to build integration scenarios. The database will include visual presentation of the integrated technologies’ architecture, their technical and economic characteristics including life cycle cost analysis (net present value), and selected cases of their implementation. The database will provide a wide range of options that can be selected for analysis in the EMP modeling tool for specific conditions.
  2. The Subtask C team will develop inputs and modules that will support the estimation of the overall costs of a district system over time, and that do not require detailed thermal and hydraulic analysis or optimization of the piping system, analysis tools, which will allow for Infrastructure Threat and Hazard Damage Analysis, Energy Surety Conceptual Design, Resiliency Node Identification Methodology, and Energy and Community Resilience and Cost/Benefit Optimization for different Scenarios.