“4DH is very much defining and establishing the future within district heating and cooling. The Research Centre has given the industry a community and a structure to refer to, and internationally we can also see that people are beginning to reflect on the different generations of district heating. Danfoss is proud to be a part of 4DH.” 
- Jan Eric Thorsen, Director of Danfoss District Heating Application Centre and partner in 4DH

"It is important for LOGSTOR to be a part of the development of the next generation of district heating in 4DH’s cooperation with industries, universities and research, and utility companies. The 4DH projects are based on the Danish model in designing the future’s district heating solutions and technologies that can be used by utility companies all over the world. Because of this they will have a great impact on the Danish export potential within district heating solutions." 
- Peter Jorsal, Product Manager at LOGSTOR.


“Heat Roadmap Europe is the most advanced study on the EU's heating and cooling sector as a whole.”
- Paul Hodson, Head of the Energy Efficiency Unit in the European Commission’s DG Energy 


I believe that Heat Roadmap Europe is a cornerstone for changing heating and cooling practices in the EU.”
- Morten Bæk, director of the Danish Energy Agency  

4DH impacts research, policy and industry

The 4DH Research Centre has been developing 4th generation district heating since 2012 as one of the world’s largest district heating research projects with expertise of 22 companies related to district heating and 8 universities in Denmark, Sweden, Croatia, and China.

It is the clear ambition of 4DH to contribute with knowledge that leads to a concrete development of future district heating technologies and systems.

So far, the work in 4DH has led to:

  • A greater political focus in the EU on the potential of district heating and cooling. The European Commission launched a strategy on heating and cooling in 2016 with a focus on renewable energy and district heating, in line with the recommendations of 4DH research. Several official EU documents in the preparations for the strategy are based on 4DH research, especially the Heat Roadmap Europe studies.
  • 4DH research has been presented more than 200 times internationally at conferences, policy meetings and other occasions, and resulted in more than 60 journal articles and at least 40 mentions in the media.
  • Since 2012, the annual 4DH conference has grown in size and popularity, and the First International Conference on Smart Energy Systems and 4th Generation District Heating in 2015 had 190 visitors and more than 70 presentations of research related to 4DH and Smart Energy Systems. The Second International Conference on Smart Energy Systems and 4th Generation District Heating is taking place in September 2016 and has received more than 100 abstracts.



 "The 4DH Research Centre is tackling key challenges of European energy systems and is thereby a strong encouragement for the prospering DHC Team at AIT. Denmark is currently a forerunner for sustainable energy concepts based on an ambitious climate protection strategy, pointing the route forward for all Europe. 4DH is one of the driving forces of this development."
- Ralf-Roman Schmidt, Engineer at the Austrian Institute of Technology



 “4DH is an international hotspot of innovation for DH research and practitioners. Its holistic approach to integrating economics, technology, planning and climate policy issues makes it unique and very valuable for anyone who aims at transforming our energy system towards sustainability.”
- Christian Maaß, partner in the Hamburg Institute - Sustainable Strategy Consultants




“We are taking an integrated holistic approach, which we have never done before. We now look at heating and cooling as a part of energy systems and hopefully this will help us discover synergies that will make the systems more energy efficient.” 
- Eva Hoos, Policy Officer at the European Commission
’s DG Energy, during the First International Conference on Smart Energy Systems and 4th Generation District Heating, 2015

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“4DH promotes the research and application of "Smart heating grids" in China. From the north to south of China, low-temperature and efficient 4GDH, with a competitive price, may become the solution to supplying heat instead of a decentralized heat supply system in the south of China.”
- Zhaojun Wang, Professor at the Harbin Institute of Technology, China 


“The research conducted in 4DH is providing district heating operators in Croatia with project ideas and feasibility studies that they can use to apply for funding. The research has also done a great job raising awareness among local and regional governments about the issues of district heating and cooling.”
- Neven Duic, Professor at Zagreb University and partner in 4DH

Funded by

InnovationFundDenmark logo 2014