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As cities - and their buildings - grow, so does the demand for energy. New energy efficient technologies for heating, cooling and ventilation are needed

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Since 2016, the final energy consumption in buildings in Germany had risen to around 3,200 petajoules (PJ). The largest share (27.8%) was accounted for by space heating in private households, the industry, and the trade, commerce, services sector. Especially in the coldest months of the year, the demand for space heating increases enormously. Compared to 2008, the share of space heating fell by 7.7%. However, overall 36.3% more energy was consumed for air-conditioning in buildings in Germany within the same period. However, energy-efficient renovations and the installation of modern heating systems can significantly reduce the final energy requirements.

In order to increase previously untapped potential, the collaborative project "FIHLS - Facade Integrated Heating+Cooling, Ventilation and Sanitation" is currently involved in developing technologies that can be easily integrated into the insulation of the building shell. The main focus here is on the renovation of residential buildings and minimising interference with the building fabric.

The project was divided into various work packages, which were assigned to the respective industrial partners. The company Beck + Heun GmbH is engaged in researching and developing a new, non-combustible insulating material for use as a facade component. In cooperation with Westaflexwerk GmbH, it is also developing compact ventilation units for apartments. Kermi GmbH and the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems (ISE) are focusing on a low-exergy system for heat supply with integrated ventilation function. The latter is also developing a concept for the integration of all components into the building facade in order to enable lower-energy consumption in residential buildings in future through energy-related renovations and refurbishments.

The project, funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi), is scheduled for completion in April 2020.