Sustainable buildings: towards an energy producing built environment

Energy consumption in Europe is increasing and fossil fuels are running out. Approximately 40% of the energy consumption occurs within the built environment. This must be completely energy-neutral in our country by 2050. TNO uses its knowledge and expertise for energy-positive buildings: sustainable buildings that produce energy.

Sustainable buildings

GENERATING ADDITIONAL ENERGY FROM ENERGY-POSITIVE BUILDINGS

The heating, hot water and installations in a building result in building-specific energy consumption. In order to be energy neutral, this consumption must be compensated by renewably generated energy, thereby making it CO2-neutral.

TNO is committed to sustainable buildings that produce energy. Energy-positive buildings compensate for building-related energy consumption and they also generate enough energy for all their own use, such as electrical equipment, computers and lighting. And they generate extra energy for use in other sectors, such as industry and transport.

REALISING SUSTAINABLE PRODUCTION THROUGH FOUR INNOVATIVE AREAS

In order to realise energy-positive buildings, we look at energy from four angles:

  • For example, we are working on solar panels and alternatives to fossil fuels for energy generation.
  • Energy transport is about ensuring that the place where energy is produced (or generated) is as close as possible to the place where it is used.
  • For energy storage, we focus on heat batteries, which store solar energy or wind energy.
  • For energy use, we develop concepts to generate or reuse heat. We also devise ways of helping users to use energy more efficiently. And we work on solutions that keep homes and business premises not only energy efficient, but also pleasant, liveable and healthy.

HOW DO WE ACHIEVE NATURAL GAS-FREE NEIGHBOURHOODS?

Making municipalities gas-free requires much more than the development of technological solutions. TNO contributes to the realisation of natural gas-free neighbourhoods and a future without CO2 emissions in a variety of areas:

This TNO project supports the following Sustainable Development Goals

News

Cementless, 100% locally made blocks for energy efficient housing

16 September 2020
The biggest obstacle in scaling Compressed Earth Blocks for housing is the price and environmental effect of cement which needs to be used as a binder. 5-7% of the block is cement, responsible for 50%... Read more
News

Boosting affordable housing with cementless blocks

16 January 2020
The market demand for construction materials is tremendous in developing countries due to a growing population. To tackle the disadvantages of hollow concrete blocks and burnt bricks Oskam , LEVS and... Read more
News

License agreement on innovative cool bricks in Malawi

05 July 2019
TNO and Terrastone ltd – a major construction firm in Malawi – signed a license agreement to kick off the production of cold ceramic bricks. TNO developed these strong, red ‘cool bricks’, which can be... Read more

Buildings & Infrastructure
Contact

Dr. ir. Sten de Wit

  • Energy
  • Buildings

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