International Energy Agency’s Solar Heating and Cooling Programme

The IEA Solar Heating and Cooling (SHC) Programme has over 35 years of international collaborative work in the field of research, development, demonstration (RD&D) and test methods for solar thermal energy and solar buildings.  The results of this work are available for researchers, policy makers, industry, utility and business representatives, builders, architects and teachers

The IEA SHC Programme is a member-based Programme with 20 member countries and 5 member organizations. Its mission is “To enhance collective knowledge and application of solar heating and cooling through international collaboration to fulfill its vision of solar thermal energy meeting 50% of low temperature heating and cooling demand by 2050.”

Highlighted in the section below are some of our most recent publications:

SHC2015: Conference Combines New Technologies, Market Analysis and Policies

SHC2015: Conference Combines New Technologies, Market Analysis and Policies

The development of the international solar heating and cooling markets is posing great challenges: Whereas the residential market has been on the decline, market demand is shifting towards complex industrial solutions, large-scale plants for solar district heating and innovative solutions for building integration. The leading international solar thermal conference, the …
IEA SHC: Start of International Research Network on GW-Sized Solar Thermal Plants

IEA SHC: Start of International Research Network on GW-Sized Solar Thermal Plants

The IEA’s solar heating and cooling programme has begun its research activities on solar thermal systems of gigawatt size. Scientists, industry representatives and utilities have been invited to participate in a definition workshop for a new task in the Austrian city of Graz on 5 November 2015. Sabine Putz, COO …
IEA SHC: Industry Invited to Join Research Community for Lower Solar Heat Costs

IEA SHC: Industry Invited to Join Research Community for Lower Solar Heat Costs

Driving down the costs of solar thermal systems is not only about cheaper collector production. In fact, post-production processes, such as sales, installation and maintenance account for up to 50 % of the price the end customer will have to pay. The new IEA SHC Task 54, Price Reduction of …
IEA SHC Task 49: Solar Process Heat Showcase in Montpellier

IEA SHC Task 49: Solar Process Heat Showcase in Montpellier

Industry participation is key for the research work of IEA’s Solar Heating and Cooling Programme. Hence, the researchers of Task 49, Solar Heat Integration in Industrial Processes, used the last meeting in France in mid-September to hold a one-day workshop dedicated to Solar Heat Integration in Industrial Processes (SHIP) in …
Solar Cooling 2.0: New Generation Growing Up

Solar Cooling 2.0: New Generation Growing Up

The workshop New Generation Solar Cooling & Heating Systems held in Rome, Italy, on 23 September 2015 was the opportunity to check the status of both research on and market developments in solar cooling technology. The half-day event, which had about 40 participants, was jointly organised by Task 53 of …
IEA SHC Task 42: Latent Heat Storage Has Huge Potential in the Long Run

IEA SHC Task 42: Latent Heat Storage Has Huge Potential in the Long Run

In their position paper published in August 2015, the scientists of IEA SHC Task 42 (Compact Thermal Energy Storage) summed up the key results of their work between 2009 and 2015. Operating agent Matthias Rommel sees huge potential for latent heat and sorption materials in the long run – in …
IEA SHC: 20 Country Profile Analyse Market and Industry Development

IEA SHC: 20 Country Profile Analyse Market and Industry Development

“The Renewable Heat Incentive in the United Kingdom has failed to stimulate the market for solar thermal, which continues to contract. There are technical issues in the regulations preventing the use of solar thermal with other renewable heating systems, such as biomass and heat pumps, and the subsidy rate is …
IEA SHC: Attractive Solar Process Heat Markets

IEA SHC: Attractive Solar Process Heat Markets

Which countries are currently attractive markets for solar process heat? Different sources give different answers to this question. The chart above shows the assessment of the solar industry. More than 30 % of the Austrian solar collector manufacturers in the two surveys in 2012 and 2013 assumed that solar process …
Turkey: Great Achievements with Little Policy Support

Turkey: Great Achievements with Little Policy Support

The interest in technology and market research on the solar heating and cooling sector is growing. The number of countries participating in the IEA Solar Heating and Cooling Programme (SHC) increased significantly over the last two years from 20 to 25 nations. One of the most recent entries was Turkey …
IEA SHC: Mutual Recognition of Test and Inspection Reports Saves Industry Costs

IEA SHC: Mutual Recognition of Test and Inspection Reports Saves Industry Costs

The work of the Global Solar Certification (GSC) Network is expected to continue within the framework of the IEA Solar Heating and Cooling Programme (SHC). The Executive Committee of the IEA SHC approved the set-up of a task definition workshop in Paris on 7 October 2015, in order to establish …
Position Paper: Actions Needed to Pave Way for Net Zero Energy Buildings

Position Paper: Actions Needed to Pave Way for Net Zero Energy Buildings

Over 40 % of primary energy use and 24 % of greenhouse gas emissions are attributed to global energy use in buildings so architects and builders are being posed the challenge of creating highly energy-efficient structures. One vision promoted by stakeholders in many countries worldwide is Net Zero Energy Buildings …
China: Investigating Low-Temperature and Low-Cost Solar Cooling Systems

China: Investigating Low-Temperature and Low-Cost Solar Cooling Systems

Dai Yanjun is among the key solar cooling researchers in China. In cooperation with the IEA Solar Heating and Cooling (SHC) Programme, the professor with more than 15 years of experience in solar cooling research at the Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) organised the Solar Cooling Week in Shanghai in …