Siemens to launch smart pay-as-you-go service for district heating

The cloud-based software is expected to reduce costs by £1m over 10 years

Siemens has announced plans to launch what is claimed to be the first smart pay-as-you-go (PAYG) service for district heating networks.

The cloud-based software allows householders to see their usage and top up their account balance via an app while the heat network operator can control tariff rates.

Siemens says vulnerable consumers can be protected from disconnection as it automatically activates “friendly credit” to keep the supply running.

It estimates savings to exceed £1 million over 10 years and up to £6 million over 30 years compared to current metering solutions and based on the size of the networks.

The savings would be a result of “simple, low cost installation” as bespoke hardware is not needed and 30% lower costs from reduce service visits and administration.

There are currently 500,000 district heating connections across the UK, with plans to increase it to 5.7 million by 2050.

Stuart O’Neil, Head of Heat Energy Networks said: “The move to fourth generation heat networks will provide a 30% CO2 saving as efficiencies are realised. However, this isn’t future-proof. For a fully integrated smart city, in which homes are heated and electric vehicles charged at the lowest environmental cost – we need to be bolder and look at all utilities as one.

“Our innovations are using expertise developed in the utilities market and adapting them to new environments. Taking a digital approach to how heat is managed and paid for will allow control of the energy network for the operator while enabling the prosumer.”

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