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:

Source: ZAE Bayern

In search of cost-effective, advanced PCMs

Salt hydrates are the most interesting phase change material in the low-temperature range of up to 150 °C. Their volume-related enthalpy at melting is much higher than the enthalpy of paraffins and sugar alcoehols (see the chart above) and they are comparatively inexpensive. This is why the ZAE Bayern research …
Chart: Task 58

Compact thermal energy storage: research in cycles

Research into compact thermal energy storage is made difficult by the fact that the performance of storage materials depends significantly on their intended purpose. For example, storage tanks that are integrated into space heating systems are made of materials different from those used to make tanks for process heat loops …

Anna Maria Ruz: Chile’s ambitious goal to become carbon neutral by 2050

Anna Maria Ruz was honoured to be part of the organising team of the joint conferences SHC / SWC 2019 in Santiago de Chile. Ruz is Sustainable Energy Director at the Chilean Economic Development Agency in short called Corfo. The agency represents the public sector in the discussion about the …

Prof Roberto Roman: First Solar World Congress in Latin America

Prof Roberto Roman from the Solar Energy Research Center (SERC) in Chile got standing observation during the closing session of the joint conferences SWC / SHC 2019 in Santiago de Chile at the beginning of November 2019. He was the initiator and co-chair of this first Solar World Congress in …

Christoph Brunner: Solar heat for water purification and metal recovery in industry

Water and energy are the most important resources globally. The term ‘water-energy nexus’ underlines their close connection, and the phrase has become increasingly popular with international environmental organisations. In the interview carried out at the SHC 2019 conference in Santiago de Chile, Christoph Brunner describes a demonstration plant that uses …

Ian Nelson : Large solar heat plants are cost-effective in the mining sector in Chile

Since 2013 Energia Llaima owns and operates the worldwide largest solar heat plant in a mine which is situated in the middle of the desert in the north of Chile. Ian Nelson explains his business model, the economy of scale and the daily challenges with cleaning the collector panels. Nelson …

John O. Donnell: Economy of scale for solar industrial heat

Economy of scale allows the US-based company GlassPoint to offer solar heat which is below the cost of natural gas. In the interview at SHC 2019 conference in Santiago de Chile John O. Donnell announced that the first 300 MW of solar steam production in Oman are online. Once completed …

Prof Julio Normey Rico: Concentrating solar technologies for Brazil

Improving the operation of concentrating solar thermal collectors is one of the focus points of a research group at the Federal University of Santa Catarina in the south of Brazil. In the interview on SHC 2019 conference in Santiago de Chile, Prof Julio Normey Rico describes the first demonstration plant …

Alexandra Troi: Exposition highlights successful modernisation of historic buildings

Historic buildings shape the cities in Europe. To keep them comfortable and affordable, they need to be modernised. In an interview on the SHC 2019 conference in Santiago de Chile Alexandra Troi presents an exhibition of 12 rollups with successful examples of retrofitted historic buildings. The touring exhibtion can be …

Sabine Putz: Solar Heat for Cities

Europe follows the role model of Denmark were already more than 120 towns, villages and cities use solar district heating. Adapted seasonal heat storage concepts are the big challenge of the future, says Sabine Putz in an Interview at SHC 2019 conference in Santiago de Chile. Sabine Putz heads the …

Prof. Rodrigo Palma: Chile has big opportunities for solar energy

olar Energy in Mining is one of the focus research areas in Chile. Circular economy within the mining sector to recover materials and energy is one of the challenges of the future, said Prof. Rodrigo Palma in the interview carried out at the SHC 2019 conference in Santiago de Chile …

Duncan Gibb: Highlights of the Renewables 2019 Global Status Report

The Renewables 2019 Global Status Report exposes the different speed of renewable energy development. Whereas a record 100 GW photovoltaic capacity was added in 2018, progress in heating cooling and transport is slow due to a lack of policy support. Duncan Gibb describes the encouraging as well as the alarming …