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alarmLast updated:17 April, 2020

Integration of Combined Cooling, Heating and Power Microgrids in Zero-Energy Public Buildings Under High Power Quality and Continuity of Service Requirements

The IMPROVEMENT Project “Integration of combined cooling, heating and power microgrids in zero-energy public buildings under high power quality and continuity of service requirements” under the INTERREG SUDOE Program aims  to renovate / convert existing public buildings into nearly zero energy needs buildings, integrating renewable energy micro grids with combined heat, cold and electricity generation and storage systems.

It has also the following three specific objectives:

  • To develop methodologies to improve energy efficiency in conventional public buildings through a solar heating and cooling generation system, and integration of active / passive techniques for energy generation, control techniques, consumption and storage control in order to convert these spaces into buildings with almost zero energy needs;
  • To develop a fail-safe power control system for micro power grids, according to high quality design criteria;
  • To design a power management system for micro grids, from renewable sources, with a hybrid system for energy storage, according to minimum degradation, maximum efficiency and priority in the use of renewable energy criteria.

It is also expected that the IMPROVEMENT project can improve the implementation of public policies on energy efficiency and on the use of renewable energy sources in public and residential buildings, by encouraging the implementation of micro- grids smart consumption management and promoting the digitization of the energy sector, as well as the techniques and strategies experimental demonstration.

The SUDOE IMPROVEMENT project (SOE3 / P3 / E0901) is co-financed by the Interreg SUDOE Program and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), with a total estimated budget of EUR 2.5 million (75% financed by the European Commission ) and a three years duration (September 2022).

LNEG activity in the consortium / project

The National Laboratory of Energy and Geology, IP (LNEG) has as mission to promote technological innovation in the development of the Portuguese economy contributing to the increase of the national competitiveness. As a partner in the IMPROVEMENT Project will share the broad experience in national and international energy projects and in the main research areas of the Renewable Energy Unit and Energy Systems Integration (UER), such as, energy efficiency (EE) and integration of energy and renewable systems in buildings, namely, near zero energy buildings (nZEB). LNEG has been involved in various projects related to nZEB, energy management and quality assessment of electricity supply, among others: NZEB_LAB, Suscity, LISCool, REIVE, Sudoket, PVP4grid.

Facilities occupied by LNEG will be used for the development and testing of hybrid storage (thermal and electrical) micro-grids. In addition to the activities in which LNEG will participate with the other Partners, it will also coordinate:


GT 5 – IMPROVEMENT SYSTEM INTEGRATION, VALIDATION AND DEMONSTRATION: Activities 5.3: Integration of the national pilot (LNEG and IST) in LNEG and Activity 5.5 – Experimental testing for the LNEG pilot.


The project has as partners

  • SPAIN: Centro Nacional de Hidrogênio. Parceiro Líder (CNH2)
  • SPAIN: Universidade de Castilla la Mancha.
  • FRANCE: Escola Superior Nacional de Mecânica e Aerotecnia (ENSMA).
  • PORTUGAL: Instituto Técnico Superior (IST)
  • PORTUGAL: Laboratório Nacional de Energia e Geologia (LNEG).
  • SPAIN: Secretaria Geral de Indústria, Energia e Minas da Junta de Andaluzia.
  • SPAIN: Universidade de Córdoba.
  • SPAIN: Agência de Energia da Andaluzia.
  • FRANCE: Universidade de Perpignan, Via Domitia.

In addition to the IMPROVEMENT Project partners, the following entities will also collaborate:

  • Green Power Technologies, S.L.
  • Área de gestão de saúde a leste de Málaga, na Junta de Andaluzia (Hospital Regional de La Axarquía).
  • Engenharia Solar Irradia.
  • Agência Regional de Energia e Meio Ambiente do Algarve.
  • Associação de Construção Sustentável de Portugal (Cluster Habitat Sustentável).
  • Comunidade Intermunicipal do Algarve (AMAL).

Expected results

It is expected that IMPROVEMENT will achieve the following results:

  • Improvement of the energy autonomy of existing public buildings through hybrid storage systems, even under extreme weather conditions.
  • Increasing the energy efficiency of public buildings by integrating techniques leading to nearly zero energy buildings and renewable energy-based heating and cooling systems with thermal storage.
  • Development of fault resilient micro grids by using inverters with active control of the neutral in order to ensure supply quality in the presence of sensitive loads (high technology equipment).
  • Demonstration on real (and replicable) public buildings.
  • Development of regional strategies and implementation plans.

As a result of the project and in its final phase, in close collaboration with the associated companies, a business plan will also be carried out for the commercialization of the developed process technologies.

Research units