VITO/EnergyVille’s Urban Energy Pathfinder calculates the most optimal measures to make the energy performance of a building, street, neighbourhood or city more sustainable. This can be done both by intervening in the building envelope and by using sustainable generation techniques for heat and electricity at building and location level.

Urban Energy Pathfinder supports energy projects

In order to continue to meet the rising demand for energy and at the same time to put a stop to global warming caused by CO₂, many Positive Energy Communities are needed. These include neighbourhoods that locally generate, store, distribute and consume their energy sustainably. This requires a commitment from political and industrial decision-makers. At the same time, it offers a range of opportunities for citizens to actively participate in local energy projects in their neighbourhood, with greater autonomy and a favourable financial return.

But how do you get started? And which measures are worth the investment? VITO/Energyville has developed the Urban Energy Pathfinder, a tool that calculates the most optimal measures to make the energy management of a building, street, neighbourhood or city more sustainable. And this from a financial, ecological and environmental-technical point of view. Think of insulating homes, putting solar panels on the roof, providing charging infrastructure for electric vehicles and constructing heating networks.

User-friendly tool helps with energy planning

The Urban Energy Pathfinder is a comprehensive modelling system that calculates the most effective mix of measures to ensure that energy is used sustainably in a building, street, district, or city. The tool examines the energy savings along with the reduction in CO2 emissions and costs for each scenario.

The software combines EnergyVille's knowledge of energy analysis and GIS (Geographic Information System) data processing and algorithms. In addition, the user can exclude proposed measures from the calculation routine. The results are presented per zone on district (ward) and building level. The results on city level are also calculated as an aggregation of the results of the zones. The calculation results are displayed in user-friendly table and graphs with energy, financial and environmental indicators.

Decision support for cities and towns

The Urban Energy Pathfinder provides information on energy consumption, environmental impact and insight into spatial aspects such as the potential for renewable production and heat networks in relation to the existing buildings. The tool also gives an insight into the expected remaining energy demand and the costs and benefits per investment measure.

It may be clear that the Urban Energy Pathfinder is interesting for a very broad target group. Think of Positive Energy Communities, financiers (information about the business case of investments), urban planners (insight into what the mix of measures means for the layout of the city) and project developers (insight into what mix of measures is possible within the requirements of the client). But we can certainly see this in a broader perspective. The tool gives cities and municipalities insight into how climate plans can be put into practice. Moreover, the tool offers regional, national and European authorities the possibility of providing a decision-supporting calculation model that helps cities and municipalities to implement the climate plans.

More energy solutions for the future

The transition towards a safe, sustainable and affordable energy system is on its way. Our research includes materials and components up to the level of complete energy systems, business models and strategies.