Solar district heating growing rapidly in Denmark

Date: 07/10/2013

The collector area of solar district heating systems in Denmark has increased 3.5 times in four years to reach 224,000 square meters in 2012, according to a report by Marstal District Heating (Marstal, Denmark) published by Solar Thermal World.
Solar district heating plants with another 350,000 square meters of collector are planned. The company reports that along with the increase in size more systems are being built to incorporate combined heat and power (CHP) and heat storage.
Pilot projects lead to solar thermal/CHP designs 
The first solar thermal district heating plant in Denmark was built in 1988, based on a biomass/solar thermal design. The Salturn Plant in Northern Jutland had only 1,000 square meters of collector area, but was followed by two more pilot projects in 1990, and more plants in 1996-2006. In 2006, these plants had reached 39,600 square meters of collector area.
In 2006 a working group was formed to study hybrid solar thermal/combined heat and power plants. It was found that these plants helped to balance the intermittent wind output, and that such plants were relatively inexpensive to build.
In order to deliver these results, these plants had to be very large in size and incorporate heat storage. The first two such plants were built in 2007 and 2008, each with 8,000 square meters of collector area. 
Solar thermal to meet 10% of district heat demand by 2030 
The Danish Government has set a target for solar district heating to reach 1.4 Twh-thermal in 2020 and 2.7 Twh-thermal by 2030, representing a collector area of 8 million square meters and meeting 10% of the nation´s district heating demand. Additionally, it plans to reach 7 Twh by 2050, equal to 40% of the district heating demand.
The full presentation by Marstal District Heating can be seen on the Solar Thermal World site.