Piloting Underground Seasonal Heat Storage In geothermal reservoirs (PUSH-IT)

Schematic illustration of demo sites.

The Piloting Underground Seasonal Heat Storage In geothermal reservoirs (PUSH-IT) project is a Horizon Europe consortium that aims to develop large-scale heat storage solutions to make solar and geothermal heating available all year round. 

Currently, heating and cooling represent around 50% of Europe's final energy demand and are supplied mainly by fossil fuel-derived energy. Sustainable sources like geothermal and solar provide a large amount of heat in summer, while the need is greatest in winter. The EU aims to have a net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) economy by 2050. Large-scale seasonal heat storage is a key strategy to decarbonize heating to achieve EU ambitions.

PUSH-IT will showcase a full-scale application of seasonal heat storage (up to 90°C) in geothermal reservoirs using three different technologies known as Aquifer, Borehole, and Mine Thermal Energy Storage (ATES, BTES, MTES). At six various sites in Europe, they together represent relevant geological conditions widely available across Europe.

A consortium of 19 partners

PUSH-IT received a 20 million euro Horizon Europe grant. The consortium comprises 19 diverse partners, including heat suppliers, drilling companies, geological services, and academic institutions. They will develop, deploy and test the technologies for various configurations of heat sources, heat storage technologies, geological conditions, and distribution systems. TU Delft is the coordinator of the program.

Utrecht University leads the task of techno-economic assessment. The researchers will develop an open-source modeling tool to simulate the heating system with sustainable heat supplies, different seasonal thermal storage technologies, and heat demand. This will allow different technical configurations to be assessed and optimized from both an economic and environmental perspective.

UU Team