EnEff:Stadt - Bottrop, Welheimer Mark – An integrated planning tool for mixed areas

  Aerial View Welheimer Mark

The purpose of the project “EnEff:Stadt – Bottrop, Welheimer Mark” is the energetic optimization of the area Welheimer Mark within the city of Bottrop. The project is part of the “Innovation City Ruhr Modellstadt Bottrop“, whose primary goal is the reduction of CO2-emissions by 50% by 2020. The Welheimer Mark is a mixed area with industry, commercial and residential buildings. In this heterogeneous environment, energetic optimization leverages on the usage of synergy effects between buildings, for instance use of waste heat recovery for district heating. Related analysis requires a holistic approach that includes the interaction between buildings, control strategies, energy systems, as well as thermal and electrical networks. The outcomes of the projects are: Future optimal energy supply scenarios in Welheimer Mark and a planning tool for mixed areas applicable in a variety of European regions.

  Project Cycle Copyright: © RWTH Aachen

Work Flow

First, a survey of buildings and energy systems within Welheimer Mark area was performed. The information is saved into a database, which is linked to a Geographic Information System (GIS). The connection between database and GIS enables the sophisticated organization of the information in terms of handling and analysis of data. An interface between the database and a multi-physics simulation environment is used for the automatic generation of building models according to VDI 6007, as well as user profiles. These models constitute the basis for complex city district simulation and optimization. The thermal building models are developed by the partner institute EBC.

An optimization algorithm is used to support the distribution and dimensioning of energy systems within a city district, while minimizing annual cost and greenhouse gas emissions.

Furthermore, the work flow includes also the optimization of the operation of decentralized units e.g. heat pumps or electric vehicle charging. Using flexibility on the demand side, the operation of these units can be shifted e.g. into times of high renewable generation. To this aim, also forecast of electrical and thermal demand is required and realized through a neural network with time series.

Finally simulation results can be saved back to the GIS database.

Electrical Model

The simulation tool NEPLAN is used in this project for analyzing the impact of decentralized energy supply on the electricity distribution grid. In first instance, a static load flow simulation fulfills the requirements to investigate control algorithms and new energy concepts in the area Welheimer Mark. For analyzing the grid stability in presence of increasing photovoltaic penetration, we calculate the possible installable power per roof based on the GIS-Data and run worst-case scenarios. Additionally microgrid scenarios within the mixed-use areas are investigated.


The project EnEff:Stadt – Bottrop, Welheimer Mark develops a software tool for simulation, analysis and optimization of urban districts, with focus on energetic as well as economic and environmental parameters. The tool is intended to support the energetic optimization of the Welheimer Mark. Subsequently, this area of Bottrop may become the reference for smart energy linkage of industrial and residential areas. Finally the software could be used for other urban areas and, therefore, increase energetic efficiency and decrease CO2-emissions on a much larger scale.

Grateful acknowledgement is made for financial support by BMWi (German Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy), promotional reference 03ET1138D.