Solar process heat systems can generate substantially higher yields than standard systems that provide domestic hot water or space heating. The large number of promising industrial processes means that considerably more system variants are conceivable. Solar heat could either be fed into the supply system (industrial hot water or steam network) or into the process system. The framework conditions are far more complex than those surrounding standard systems, however. Frequently, there is a considerable optimization potential in terms of process control and heat recovery, which should be exploited prior to integrating a solar installation. Depending on the type of operation, heat demand may vary over the course of the day, there may be interactions between the solar installation and the existing heating supply system, and there may be long-term changes to the industrial heat demand, all of which have to be taken into consideration.
Fraunhofer ISE conducts intensive work into evaluating and optimizing solar system, control and integration concepts for promising industries or processes. Our many years of experience with low and high-temperature solar thermal systems and with solar thermal sea water desalination plants comes to the fore here.