Sector coupling and combined heat and power generation
Sector coupling must use and exploit the varied properties of biomass as a storable and transportable energy source, whether in gaseous, liquid or solid form. Sector coupling has been defined as the linking of the three energy areas/systems (electricity, heat and transport) via suitable technologies and regulatory mechanisms.
The focus is on biomass-based combined heat and power (CHP) solutions, interaction between biomass and renewable power in Power-to-X applications and the provision of biomass-based high temperature process heating or cooling in the industrial sector.
Given the objective of a climate-neutral building stock, smart supply solutions and more efficient combustion technologies are gaining importance. In this area, research funding primarily concentrates on practical improvements of plant components, concepts and flexibility and of control and automation technology as well as on emission reduction solutions. In the heating segment, funding is provided, among others, to promote the optimisation of compact microfurnaces and flexible-fuel combustion in the heat supply for low-energy and passive houses, district/local heating networks and innovative approaches to biomass hybrid and multibrid systems. Promising hybrid systems for grid-supportive operations include, for instance, combinations of biomass boilers and heat pumps or solar thermal energy and gas heaters. Such systems can balance out peaks in electricity and gas demand.