With biomass prices on the rise, solar district heating could become profitable in Lithuania. But without investment grants, payback periods were still too long, it said in the conclusion of a 2015 SDH market study by LEI, the Lithuanian Energy Institute (see the attached document in Lithuanian). The photo shows the country’s first SDH system set up in 2011. Installed on the roof of the boiler house, it preheats water for a wood chip boiler in the district heating station of Dūkštas, a town in eastern Lithuania. The demonstration unit with 82 m² of vacuum tube collectors received funding from international organisations.
- Solar radiation in Lithuania is between 850 and 1,050 kWh/m²;
- Storage volume is at 0.25 m³ per m² of solar collectors;
- Collector field prices range from 300 EUR/m² for a 2,000 m² field to as low as 200 EUR/m² for a field of 27,400 m²;
- The specific solar yield is 475 kWh per m²;
- The real interest rate, i.e., nominal interest rate minus inflation, is 3 % over 30 years;
- Solar heat replaces most of the heat from biomass boilers;
- Capital costs are calculated over 30 years.