IEA SHC

Solarthermalworld.org and IEA SHC Partnership

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: 

  • “Excellent material for sorption-based solar energy storage”

    Microporous hydrophilic substances such as zeolites are recognised as promising materials for very efficient energy storage. Solar thermal systems are used to dry the material and store all of the thermal energy inside without losses until water is returned into the structure to release...
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  • Castle in Ghent, Belgium

    Producing hot water underneath natural slates

    A state-of-the-art solar thermal system has been installed under the slate roof of a castle in Ghent, Belgium. Roll-bonded Thermoslate absorbers measuring 44 m² have been integrated into the space between the wooden trusses and natural slate tiles of the historic structure built in the 12th...
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  • Photo: Trimmel Wall Architects

    New standard to improve energy performance of historic buildings

    Maintaining the exterior of a historic building while raising energy efficiency is not necessarily a contradiction. The new EN 16883:2017 standard, Conservation of cultural heritage, provides guidance on how to improve the energy performance of historically significant structures....
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  • Task 51

    Lessons learned from urban solar projects

    Cities and municipalities are thought to play a decisive role in transforming energy systems. Urban planners, municipal stakeholders and consulting firms need case studies to demonstrate that solar energy can be integrated successfully into new and existing urban neighbourhoods. It is why...
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  • Combining the strengths of collector technologies

    Task 55 of the IEA SHC Programme is currently studying the benefits of systems equipped with both flat plate and parabolic trough collectors to supply thermal energy to district heating networks. Preliminary results from a project in Taars, Denmark, have been encouraging, indicating how...
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  • Solar district heating potential of small towns in Europe

    Most small European towns connected to a district heating network have enough land available for a solar field to meet 20 % of heat demand. In all, 93 % of the identified solar heat potential can be produced at a price of less than 50 EUR/MWh. These are the key findings from a study by...
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  • Water-energy nexus in industrial sector

    Water and energy are the most important resources globally. The term ‘water-energy nexus’ was coined to underline their close connection, and the phrase has become increasingly popular with international environmental organisations. In mid-June, a new research platform, Solar energy in...
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  • Daniel Mugnier Is New IEA SHC Chairman

    The new chair of the IEA Solar Heating and Cooling Programme, also known as IEA SHC, will be Daniel Mugnier, a leading expert in solar cooling. Mugnier, who heads the R&D department at French-based Tecsol, was elected during an executive committee meeting in Stockholm on 21 June and...
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  • SHW 1

    Rising demand for solar heat in large buildings and industry

    By the end of 2017, the market for solar heating and cooling had grown by 472 GWth, which again made it the largest for solar energy in the world. The one for photovoltaic systems gained 402 GWp to become the second-largest, and 5 GWel was enough for concentrating solar power to rank third...
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  • Photo: ISFH, IEA SHC Task 60

    PVT increasingly used for net zero energy buildings

    A rising number of manufacturers and suppliers in Europe are offering combined photovoltaic and solar thermal systems, also known as PVT units. This was one of the main messages of the International Workshop on the Status of PVT Systems, organised by Fraunhofer ISE on 16 May 2018...
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  • Solar Academy

    Webinar: SHC Market and Industry Trends 2017

    The next Solar Academy webinar on Tuesday 12 June 2018 from 3:00 to 4:30 PM CEST (Central European Summer Time) will highlight the key data and findings of the two most recent SHC market reports: Solar Heat Worldwide. Global Market Development and Trends in 2017 from IEA Solar...
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