LowEx Herten

Subproject in the EnerAct Project – Energy System Transformation and Social Megatrends:
Innovative Intercommunal Energy Supply for the “Neue Zeche Westerholt” in Herten/Gelsenkirchen


  • Solar thermal energy
  • Energy supply
  • District heating
  • Energy concept


  • Study
  • Consulting


  • Private financing


04/2018 – 09/2019 (1.5 years)




The overlapping of the energy transition by megatrends such as digitalisation or demographic change requires more than ever integrated problem-solving concepts for the implementation of the energy transition – as here for “Neue Zeche Westerholt“. In addition to the technical aspects, those concepts need to focus on the socio-economic characteristics of the individual regions and municipalities, while taking account of possible changes caused by the megatrends.


Wuppertal Institute and Foundation Mercator


  • Wuppertal Institute for Climate, Environment and Energy (lead)
  • Ramboll GmbH
  • Steinbeis Research Institute Solites
  • Richtvert Energy System Consulting
  • Bergische Universität Wuppertal -Institute for Democracy and Participation Research
  • University of Duisburg Essen – Chair of Energy Technology
  • Watergy GmbH
  • Environmental Agency of the city of Herten
  • Hertener Stadtwerke GmbH
  • EnergieAgentur.NRW (Competence Centre for System Transformation and Energy Infrastructure)
  • Viessmann Deutschland GmbH


The objective of this subproject is to develop an economically, ecologically and socially optimal heat supply concept for the conversion area of the former Westerholt colliery in Gelsenkirchen-Herten.


The project is focussed on the overall system of heat supply, consisting of network, storage and generation. It aims for a sustainable low temperature supply (LowEx), which can integrate sector coupling technologies and various renewable energy sources such as solar thermal energy, geothermal energy and waste heat sources. Therefore, an integrated analysis of technical-infrastructural as well as socio-economic and socio-cultural implementation requirements is carried out. In addition to intercommunal integration, the project is characterised by a transdisciplinary project consortium (municipality, public utilities, science, networkers, manufacturers and planners).


The results show a system comparison of supply concepts for three lead heat generation technologies (district heating, cogeneration and heat pumps) which will be combined with solar thermal energy. Beside the technical-economical comparison, aspects of ecology and public acceptance are taken into account.

Downloads and links
Final Report LowEx Herten (German)

Thomas Pauschinger

This project has received funding from

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