Will we be able to build cities in which the use of fossil fuels is largely superfluous? How can we achieve the ambitious climate goals of the Federal Government? And how can each individual contribute their share? An attempt to answer these questions and more is made by three residential quartersthat are part of the SmartQuart project: They are located in the association of municipalities Kaisersesch in Rhineland-Palatinate as well as in the cities Essen and Bedburg in North Rhine-Westphalia.
The Smart Quart project’s main focus is on the exchange of energy and intelligent networking within and between the quarters. Energy consumption and generation are optimised at the local level. The project team, consisting of a total of eleven partners from business, science, politics and industry, is developing new products and solutions for the planning, construction and operation of energy-optimised quarters in which the use of fossil fuels is largely superfluous. An important factor here is sector coupling at the municipal level. Like thisthe energy transition can be realised in all areas – mobility, heat and electricity.
A digital urban quarter is being built in Essen. For this purpose, existing typical city properties will be connected by a digital network to test out suitable solutions for a sustainable electricity and heat supply. This initiative aims to act as a role model for the energy transition in urban areas with high energy consumption. Furthermore, it highlights the efficient use of energy in densely populated areas.
A climate-friendly quarter with 130 residential units is being built in Bedburg. The renewable energy is generated directly on site – by the wind farm in the immediate vicinity. The energy thus obtained can be used directly on site and surpluses can be provided to the other quarters. In addition, the innovative low-temperature network together with central and decentralised heat pumps, wastewater heat utilisation and ground collectors enables efficient, climate-friendly heating, which further increases the sustainability of the quarter.
Smart grids also mean that the sections electricity, heat and mobility have to be coupled and interconnected via the energy networks. In the quarter in Kaisersesch this is being realised via a hydrogen microgrid: electricity is converted into green hydrogen by a power-to-gas facility. The hydrogen will then be used by local industries, the local heating network, for local public transport, as well as for storage and onward transport.
The three quarters involved in the SmartQuart project represent typical German cities with a range of population densities, from sparsely to heavily populated regions, making their solutions applicable across other German areas. This is a given necessity since the energy transition has to be realised everywhere. The continuous involvement of all parties is essential for the success of the project.
SmartQuart is part of the “Reallabore der Energiewende” program (= field tests of the German energy transition) and is supported by the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Action.
SmartQuart lives off participation. If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, feel free to submit them through the contact form below. The SmartQuart team will review your message and get in touch with you as soon as possible.