Author: Anika Peucker | Translation: Anna Knollmann, Stephanie Anderseck

Do you want to be “smood”, as well?

Nice, modern, ecological, economical, decentralized! This is how the acronym "smood" - the living of the future - could also be described. But actually "smood" stands for "smart neighborhood". It means living and working in intelligent buildings forming an environmentally friendly neighborhood surrounded by "green energy". Because it is precisely this "green energy" that is the core of "smood".


"smood" goal

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Thuringia's core growth initiative "smood - smart neighborhood

The video (in German) shows impressively what it is all about. Just so much in advance: The goal of "smood" is to renovate and operate residential estates in an energetic, environmentally friendly, intelligent and at the same time economical manner. This also includes the interests of the tenants. Existing housing estates are therefore to be renovated in a way that is neutral in terms of warm rents, using a combination of various renewable energies, energy storage and control technologies. In the case of new residential parks, the building and energy management system developed by research and industry will be integrated right from the first planning step. This guarantees a sustainable energy management of the buildings in line with the energy turnaround.

"smood" modules

As one can imagine, such a neighborhood redevelopment, i.e. the modernization of a large housing estate, cannot be achieved on its own. This is why 17 companies, four research institutes and an association in the Central Thuringia region joined forces in "smood". Together, they are developing and implementing ideas for neighborhood redevelopment. In this way, "smood" serves the complete renovation and modernization chain necessary for the conversion of such residential parks.

In the "smoodCAPTURE" module, the engineers first of all record the construction status with unmanned drones and identify the energetic weak points of the residential buildings. "smoodQIM", the central neighborhood information model, provides all "smood" actors with information on a platform to organize their trades. "smoodSIMULATION" simulates, designs and coordinates the building envelopes and system technologies along the refurbishment strategy. "smoodMANAGE" continuously evaluates the results of all parties involved during the renovation. In this way, "smood" reacts to rigid planning concepts and offers economic flexibility by allowing continuous intervention in the renovation process to save energy.

The heart of "smood" beats in "smoodHARDWARE". This is where the unexploited energy sources and innovative storage systems are combined. In detail, "smoodHARDWARE" consists of the development of decentralized heat reservoirs, the geothermal heat storage systems, called "GeoHeatStorage". In addition, the parties involved are developing a horizontal geothermal probe ("GeoHoP"), which makes unused heat potential of the neighborhood area (e.g. underneath houses) available. The central element for tenant electricity models and electromobility concepts will then be the "EStorage" electricity storage system.


High efficiency, 100 percent recyclable: the Zebra battery made of sodium nickel chloride

The picture shows the ceramic-based high-temperature battery made of sodium nickel chloride developed at Fraunhofer IKTS. This sodium nickel chloride battery, with the brand name cerenergy, can store energy generated from renewable energy sources and make it available when needed. Cerenergy, popularly known as a zebra battery, thus serves as a stationary energy storage for renewable energy sources.  Translated with (free version)
© Fraunhofer IKTS
cerenergy® high-temperature battery for stationary energy storage.

For "EStorage", our researchers at the Fraunhofer IKTS in Thuringia are developing a fully recyclable sodium nickel chloride (NaNiCl2) battery, called cerenergy®. Cerenergy® is commonly known as a zebra battery. This ceramic-based high-temperature battery can be produced at low cost. It is characterized by its high efficiency and durability. Furthermore, cerenergy® is robust, sustainable and suitable for use in harsh environments. This zebra battery characterizes the core to store electricity from solar systems and make it available to tenants at any time at a reasonable price.

Brain follows heart: "smoodACT", the control center of the building and neighborhood energy management system. Finally, "smoodACT" brings together all the data, monitors it and controls all energy and building technology processes.

"smood - smart neighborhood" is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) as part of the "Regional Growth Cores" initiative. In addition, "smood" is in line with the regional research and innovation strategy for intelligent specialization in Thuringia (RIS 3). The aim of this strategy is that "Thuringia should become an innovation leader for holistic solutions to increase the energy efficiency of existing and new buildings, districts including industry and their infrastructures".

So, we conclude: "smood" - be smart, feel good in your sustainable neighborhood!