University of Liège – Liège (Belgium)


A Rank® HTC2 unit was installed in the “Institut Supérieur Industriel Liégeois” (ISIL) building belonging to the “Haute École de la Province de Liège” (Higher School of the Province of Liège, Belgium). The system is integrated into a biomass cogeneration installation, developed by the European project BRICKER “Total Renovation Strategies for Energy Reduction in Public Building Stock” of the 7th EU Framework Program.

The project

Public buildings of the European Union Member States occupy 24 trillion square meters. Hence, they are responsible for 40% of energy consumption in Europe and 36% of carbon emissions. Therefore, the European Directive 2010/31/EU on the Energy Efficiency of Buildings determines that, as of December 31, 2018, all new public buildings must have negligible energy consumption (nZEB: “near Zero Energy Buildings”). (nZEB: “near Zero Energy Buildings”).

BRICKER aims to develop a scalable, replicable, highly efficient, with zero emissions and economically profitable solution to renovate existing public buildings. This project is expected to reduce at least 50% of energy consumption in these buildings. 60 experts from 18 entities participated in the BRICKER European project. Among them, Rank® acts as a supplier of specialised technology with research capacity.

A series of active and passive solutions have been developed and tested for that purpose, including parabolic solar collectors (CSP, Concentrated Solar Power), ventilated façades, insulation systems with PCM (Phase Change Material), biomass boilers, ORC and absorption/adsorption units.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement No 609071.

The building

The ISIL building of the Higher School of the Province of Liège can accommodate 1,200 students and has 23,600 square meters. At the beginning of the project, the heating demand was 180 kWh per square meter per year.

This building is owned by the province of Liège and has a good replicability potential for other public buildings. Moreover presents a good opportunity to show the innovative technologies implemented to the students who attend to it every day.

The solution

The cogeneration system consists of a Rank® HTC2 unit thermally powered by a biomass boiler. The heat transfer fluid between the biomass boiler and the ORC is thermal oil used at high temperatures. Besides, the building HVAC system reuses the condenser heat as water at 70. This coupled system supplies most of the heat and electricity required by the building.

Rank® HTC2 machines are specially designed for cogeneration applications with high-temperature thermal requirements, generating up to 90 kWe electricity. As a result, the primary energy saving (PES) is approximately 61%, and the associated carbon dioxide emission reduction is around 50%.