IEA SHC

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: 

  • Spotlight on SDH potential in Germany, the Netherlands and Austria

    Spotlight on SDH potential in Germany, the Netherlands and Austria

    Solar thermal will have a key role to play in growing western Europe’s solar district heating markets over the next decades. During last year’s mid-October workshop organised by IEA SHC research platform Task 55 – Towards the Integration of Large Solar Systems into District Heating and...
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  • Assessing lighting quality in commercial buildings

    Assessing lighting quality in commercial buildings

    How effective are integrated daylighting and electric lighting solutions in raising comfort and saving energy? To answer this question, a group of researchers working under the auspices of the IEA Solar Heating and Cooling Programme have taken a closer look at field studies of commercial...
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  • Surface synergies and conflicts in smart cities

    Surface synergies and conflicts in smart cities

    Surface area is an important but limited resource in cities that aim to become climate neutral. It can be used to, for example, generate heat or electricity via active solar systems, improve air quality via greening, or provide cooling thanks to highly reflective and emissive materials....

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  • Hybrid solutions are key to decarbonising industry

    Hybrid solutions are key to decarbonising industry

    Industrial solar heat will be a key element of any strategy to decarbonise the industrial sector. A mid-November workshop organised by partners to the EU-funded INSHIP project explained how industrial solar heat options can become affordable when SHIP systems work in concert with other...
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  • Technical and market assessment of solar cooling in the Caribbean

    Technical and market assessment of solar cooling in the Caribbean

    IEA SHC Solar Academy’s first online training sessions on solar heating and cooling in the Caribbean have been well received by those attending the event. About 30 consultants, agencies for energy efficiency and renewables, researchers, manufacturers, grid operator and CCREEE staff...
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  • “Solar thermal cooling reduces the strain on the power grid”

    “Solar thermal cooling reduces the strain on the power grid”

    Global IEA Solar Heating and Cooling research platform Task 65, called Solar Cooling for the Sunbelt Regions, aims to provide countries in Africa, Asia and the MENA region with specifications and know-how of solar thermal and PV air conditioning. To achieve this, researchers and...
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  • Online workshop about solar-powered industrial water management

    Online workshop about solar-powered industrial water management

    Using solar energy to decontaminate and disinfect industrial water could save both GHG emissions and water. To this end, the Water Solar Treatment research group of Plataforma Solar de Almería (PSA) in the south of Spain has specialised in designing new types of solar-powered water...
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  • TrustEE standardises project assessment and financing

    TrustEE standardises project assessment and financing

    Any company that wants to be successful in selling industrial solar heat solutions to end users and investors needs standardised project assessment and advanced risk management. To develop such processes is one of the main objectives of the subgroup Guideline to Market of the...
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  • Improved design for giga-size pit heat storage

    Improved design for giga-size pit heat storage

    Denmark’s cost-effective, tried-and-true seasonal pit heat storage concept needs to be modified if it is to be implemented across Europe, since district heat temperatures are higher and groundwater may be only 5 to 15 metres from the surface. The members of research platform Task 55 (...
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  • Four years of global SDH research summarised in online workshop and factsheets

    Four years of global SDH research summarised in online workshop and factsheets

    On Thursday, 15 October 2020, an online technology transfer workshop about large solar district heating networks will provide attendees with the perfect opportunity to listen to the key takeaways from four-year IEA SHC research platform Task 55 – Towards the Integration of Large Solar...
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  • Thermal storage for flexible sector integration

    Thermal storage for flexible sector integration

    In his keynote speech at Eurosun 2020, Dr Andreas Hauer talked about the different roles that heat storage could play as part of a whole systems approach to energy policy. Thermal energy storage, or TES, can reduce energy consumers’ dependence on volatile heat sources and align heat with...
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  • Strong European research network meets at Eurosun

    Strong European research network meets at Eurosun

    Yesterday marked the start of the first virtual Eurosun. More than 200 experts from the worlds of research and business had signed up for the three-day event organised by the International Solar Energy...

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