As part of a restructuring of its energy supply the University of Cologne plans to focus more on renewable energy sources in the future. In this context, DFIC was commissioned with the planning of a sustainable cooling and heating supply based on geothermal energy for a new institute building on the mathematical-scientific campus. DFIC is planning to use so-called high-performance energy piles (HEP) to develop the potential of geothermal energy with a stable temperature level throughout the year of approx. 10°C at a depth of 15 - 30 m (near surface geothermal area).

The 28 m deep HEPs, each filled with up to 30,000 litres of water, can be sunk into the ground outside the building and provide regenerative heating or cooling capacity, either operating as a heat source or alternatively as heat sink. The HEP system develops a 100% renewable and extremely efficient form of energy supply, especially with regard to the supply of low-temperature heating and cooling requirements.

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