Innovate UK encourages innovations in energy supply chains

Integrated supply chains for energy systems - Feasibility Study

Innovate UK is running a competition to invest up to £9.5 million in innovations to encourage cross-sector supply chains that will deliver integrated energy solutions at different scales to meet the many energy systems challenges of achieving a low-carbon economy by 2050.

DECC has the goal of seeing 15-25% of the UK’s growing space and water heating demand delivered through heat networks, in place of the current 2% capacity.

Developing scalable solutions to networks is critical to meeting heat demand, and to reaching the UK’s 2050 carbon reduction targets. Developing heat network infrastructure is both a technical and social challenge due to the high infrastructure costs, and the diverse actors and supply chains involved.

Fifth Generation Heat Networks

ICAX™ wins Innovate UK Award with LSBU to study Heat Sharing Networks

Innovate UK has awarded a contract to ICAX and London South Bank University to provide a feasibility study on Cold Water Heat Networks: Heat Sharing Networks.

Heat Sharing Networks are designed to provide a more cost effective, flexible, and scalable alternative to conventional district heating network technology. Heat Sharing Networks transfer warmth via an underground piping circuit between buildings at near ground temperature and extract it via heat pumps in each building: an intranet of heat.

This radical innovation will allow the integration of diverse energy systems through the recovery of low grade waste heat, delivery of simultaneous heating and cooling, links to heat storage in boreholes and provides lower installation costs by making use of existing infrastructure, none of which are possible with conventional high temperature heat networks.

Heat Networks Networks Demonstration at LSBU

The project is a collaboration between ICAX Ltd and CEREB at LSBU. ICAX is providing the technical and industry expertise, and LSBU is providing the research expertise and the CEREB platform from which to disseminate project results. ICAX Ltd is an innovation leader in cleantech energy for heating and cooling, with a patent for Interseasonal heat storage and considerable experience in heat networks projects.

This proposal will outline the research packages through which this project will demonstrate that Heat Sharing Networks represent a scalable and adaptable answer to meeting the UK’s growing demand for efficient space and hot water heating and develop the district energy management systems necessary for successful implementation.

The Intranet of Heat

This new heat infrastructure is the birth of an "Intranet of Heat". The Intranet of Heat enables the exchange of information about sources and needs of heat – and cooling – and then allows heat exchange from those buildings with surplus heat to those in need of heat.


See Ground Source Heating       See Ground Source Cooling    See Ground Source Energy

See also: Energy Internet