Smartes Quartier Durlach

Joint project: EnEff:Stadt – KA-Durlach: Smartes Quartier Karlsruhe-Durlach

Duration: 9/2018 - 11/2022
Contracting Authority/ Sponsors: Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Energie (BMWi)
Project Partners: KES Karlsruher Energieservice GmbH; Universität Freiburg, INATECH; Stadtwerke Karlsruhe; Volkswohnung Karlsruhe
Website: Low-Ex-Stock
Project Focus:
New energy supply concept for the "Smartes Quartier Durlach" with photovoltaics, two heat pumps and a cogeneration unit with local district heating network.
© Google Earth, Map data: Google, GeoBasis-DE/BKG
New energy supply concept for the "Smartes Quartier Durlach" with photovoltaics, two heat pumps and a cogeneration unit with local district heating network.

The aim of the project is to design, implement and evaluate an efficient and economic energy supply concept for a cluster of five existing multi-family buildings in the district of Durlach in Karlsruhe.

The innovative energy concept consists of photovoltaic modules on the roofs of all buildings, two decentral heat pumps and a natural gas cogeneration unit with a small district heating network. For an economic operation, as much electricity from PV and CHP should be consumed locally by the heat pumps and tenants. The aim is to halve the primary energy consumption and the associated CO2 emissions.

In future, the energy concept is to be transferred to districts without access to a general district heating network.


The five multi-family buildings with in total160 apartments were built in 1960 and partially modernized in 1995 and are currently supplied by natural gas boilers and electricity from the public grid.

The new energy concept is based on an intelligent combination of existing technologies: photovoltaic modules are installed on the roofs of all buildings. Three of the buildings are connected to a local heating network with two cogeneration units to generate heat and electricity.            

Two buildings are each supplied by heat pumps with innovative heat sources: a heat pump system with a combined heat source (outside air, ground source probes), which is currently being developed in the research project HEAVEN, and a heat pump system with photovoltaic-thermal PVT collectors as the single heat source of the heat pump.

All technical systems are connected, so that the heat pumps are preferably operated with electricity of the PV modules or the cogeneration unit in order to minimize the consumption of electricity from the public grid. At the same time, the operation of the cogeneration unit will be optimized to ensure that as much electricity as possible can be used locally. Smart management strategies are being developed, implemented and tested with a novel energy management system (EMS) using model predictive control.

The innovative district concept with heat pumps, photovoltaics and cogeneration unit will be implemented by 2020 and then subjected to detailed monitoring in order to evaluate energy efficiency and CO2 savings in real operation. After successful testing, the energy concept can be transferred to other districts with multi-family buildings. This is an important step towards improving the energy efficiency in existing buildings and decarbonizing the energy supply.

The project "Smartes Quartier Durlach" (Smart District Durlach) is part of the framework “LowEx im Bestand”.