Research project “rain2energy” wants to use rainwater to supply a neighborhood with heating and cooling

The recently launched research project is concerned with the sustainable supply of the “ecoSquare” urban quarter in Bamberg. The innovative energy concept provides for a regenerative thermal supply via a complex cold local heating network with heat pumps. As part of the project, Enisyst is to develop a synergetically optimized overall concept from this.

Two rainwater cisterns with a total capacity of approx. 130 m³ are to heat and cool the ecoSquare district, which is currently under construction, via a cold local heating ring. For this purpose, heat is extracted from or supplied to the cisterns as needed.

To realize the potential, AI-based predictive control technology is being developed that uses weather forecasts, heating/cooling load profiles, and rainwater usage profile to enable smart storage management.

Another goal of the control strategy is to achieve a stormwater balance with no runoff to the sewer and to use stormwater to irrigate green spaces.

In the project, Enisyst is dealing with the control engineering challenge of combining the energy utilization goals and those of rainwater management in a synergetically optimized overall concept.

In addition, the project will investigate issues related to stormwater treatment and altered biodiversity, as well as analyze building permit processes. After completion of construction, monitoring and operational optimization will follow.

Self-sufficient quarter thanks to renewable energies

Conserving resources while still providing comfortable living is the focus of the planning and implementation of this neighborhood. The most important building blocks for this are a holistic, sustainable energy concept, closed utilization cycles and an innovative mobility concept with car, bike sharing and electromobility.

Buildings in the neighborhood are intended to be self-sufficient and will be designed for both energy conservation and energy production. Particularly efficient energy use through sector coupling as well as the avoidance of CO2 release, air and water pollution control are a matter of course here.

The energy for heating, cooling, e-mobility and part of the electricity in the planned building complex is produced directly on site and comes from sustainable sources. Photovoltaics on the roofs and in the facades produce electricity. A combined heat and power plant, powered by green gas from NATURSTROM, and a geothermal probe field generate heat and cold. Both are stored in buffer storage tanks, in the geothermal probe storage tank and in the concrete mass of the building components and transported to where it is needed via an anergy ring in the neighborhood.