Digital twin of heat generation systems as a trailblazer for the development of low-emission building energy technology (DZWi)

Digitization is one of the most important challenges in energy technology over the next few years. What influence this has specifically on the system-critical applications of building energy technology is currently being analyzed in various projects (e.g. National 5G Energy Hub). The focus of previous projects is mainly on the control and regulation of complex energy systems of the present and future. The development process and operation of systems in building energy technology is not addressed. The current state of affairs in this area is that development issues are being processed in the company’s R&D departments and the results end up in a prototype that then goes through various test phases. This development is cumbersome and time-consuming. Alternative development tools and development paths are known from the automotive industry, among others, with which it is possible to digitally accompany the entire development process and to carry out the complex and cost-intensive measurements using prototypes only at a very late point in time. In addition, the digitization of devices offers the possibility of subjecting systems to automated early fault detection during operation and thus avoiding expensive repair costs. The DZWi project aims to transfer this approach to building energy technology.
Against this background, the main focus of the project is to develop a digital mapping of different energetic conversion systems (heat pump / fuel cell) in detail, with the help of which R&D times can be shortened. The combination of scientific institutions and producers of modern heating technology is to be regarded as ideal, since the digital twins to be created can be tested directly on practically relevant products. Basic parameters for heat pumps and fuel cells are to be determined on the basis of “hardware-in-the-loop” tests (HiL). In addition to the metrological analysis, an important component is the precise description of the dynamic and static behavior, e.g. B. the refrigeration cycle. A general methodology has to be developed here, which also takes into account the use of future refrigerants with regard to the F-gas regulation. The core of all development work is a cloud environment that should enable the results to be scaled for the entire life cycle of the system.