FairHeat, in collaboration with Anthesis, were commissioned by the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero (DESNZ) to produce heat network optimisation guidance for the industry. This was to support the work being undertaken through the Heat Network Efficiency Scheme (HNES) and to improve the consumer experience of existing heat networks. This is fundamentally delivered through providing reliable, low cost and efficient heat.

Following the release of a set of Heat Network Optimisation Guidance Videos aimed at heat network operators in February 2023, DESNZ has released two guidance documents:

  1. Heat network optimisation guide
  2. Heat network optimisation guide: template scope of works

“The Heat Network Optimisation Guide is the first step in defining the approach to investigating and optimising existing heat networks, building on the experience FairHeat have developed over the last 8 years. This will help to enable the industry to transition existing systems towards a more efficient, reliable, and low-carbon future; which is particularly important as the majority of buildings to be decarbonised by the UK’s 2050 target already exist. I have really enjoyed working on this project with DESNZ and Anthesis to transfer this knowledge into the industry.”

Tom Burton, Lead Engineer at FairHeat

Heat Network Optimisation Guide

The guide is aimed at technical engineers working on optimising existing heat networks, as well as heat network operators with technical skills or those looking to procure optimisation studies from third-party consultants.

The aim of this guide is to provide a standardised heat network optimisation philosophy by defining key principles, processes and minimum technical expertise for those undertaking optimisation assessments.

The three main phases of the heat network optimisation study process have been defined using a detailed breakdown of tasks, outcomes, and key outputs:

  • Initial Investigation
  • Techno-economic Assessment
  • Delivery Plan

The document primarily focuses on optimising the performance of existing residential and mixed-use heat networks, but the processes and techniques outlined will also be relevant to non-residential heat networks in general. Using the guidance will provide operators with the information required to improve the consumer experience of existing heat networks by addressing the root cause issues impacting safety, efficiency and reliability.

Heat network optimisation guide: template scope of works

The purpose of the scope of works is to provide a set of minimum requirements for conducting each defined phase of an Optimisation Study by outlining the specific tasks, expected outputs and a clear delineation of responsibilities among various stakeholders.

The scope is intended to be used by organisations (typically the network owner or operator) that are procuring or mobilising external resources to deliver an Optimisation Study for a heat network, to allow them to specify a standard approach to each project across their portfolio and ensure they receive all information required to make the best decision on how to optimise their system.

Are you applying for the Heat Network Efficiency Scheme?

Check out how FairHeat can help you through the process, from application, optimisation studies and capital works: https://fairheat.com/how-can-we-help/operating-heat-network/hnes/