User requirements for the SO WHAT tool

The main objective of SO WHAT is to develop and demonstrate an integrated software which will support industries and energy utilities in selecting, simulating and comparing alternative Waste Heat and Waste Cold (WH/C) exploitation technologies that could cost-effectively balance the local forecasted H&C demand also via renewable energy sources (RES) integration.

It’s key to understand the specific needs of the industry and energy utilities, so the tool can be design according to their requirements. In order to gather the most important features that the software should have, we carried out a research based on a design-thinking workshop, interviews and an online survey. We involved industrial sites and stakeholders to understand the main user requirements for the software.

The inputs from the interview, questionnaires and workshop responses have been analysed and grouped into technical requirements from a user perspective. The below shows areas that are common to all users:

• Simple and standardized input formats

• Ability to show the amount, quality and reliability of waste heat/cold

• Exergy analysis

• Cost benefit and life cycle analysis

• Environmental benefits calculation (CO2)

• User-friendliness

• Demand and supply matching

If you would like to learn more about the methodology and the results of the research, check our public deliverable:


SO WHAT hosts meeting, co-creation workshop and panel in Antwerp

The SO WHAT project celebrated its first General Assembly meeting in Antwerp, Belgium, on December 10th.

The session was hosted at the YUST hotel, where the consortium partners assessed the progress of this project, six months after its kick off.

In addition to presenting the activities carried out, the partners held three working tables to discuss the project’s upcoming developments. Moreover, Sustainable Innovations Europe, with the support of RINA and CARTIF, organized a co-creation workshop in the evening. During this design thinking session, the consortium members and external guests joined in a dynamic exercise to define the requirements for the tool that SO WHAT is developing. They had to put themselves in the shoes of the potential end users of the SO WHAT tool: ESCOS, industries and municipalities, and determine which features would be essential, important and interesting to have.

On the following day, December 11th, some of the partners participated in the District Heating Workshop in Antwerp, organized by one of the project partners, the Province of Antwerp, together with ISVAG, DBDH, EnergyVille, ODE Vlaanderen and Interafval (VVSG).

There, Nick Purshouse, from IESVE, had the chance to participate in a panel about smart district heating in smart cities, and to present the project’s main goals and objectives.

Europe is wasting enough heat to almost cover the current heat demands in all its buildings. To avoid all this energy going wasted and to boost a smarter, more efficient and sustainable sector, the SO WHAT project is developing an integrated software tool. Once running, it will allow easily auditing, mapping and simulating energy recovery and reusing processes. The tool will support industries and energy utilities in selecting best options to recover heat wasted to match local demand. Ultimately, it is expected to boost the transition towards a low-carbon heating and cooling system.


SO WHAT visits Martini & Rossi’s demosite

Last November 15th, SO WHAT project partners from Environment Park and RINA visited Martini & Rossi’s (M&R) Pessione plant in Turin, Italy, where all the products of the company, such as Martini, sparkling wines and liquors, are produced.

This industrial site is particularly relevant for the SO WHAT project, since many heat recovery options are already in place and thus it represents a challenging situation for the project to test its efficacy. In addition, a remarkable amount of thermal processes, including heat and cold, are in place during the production of the beverages.

M&R is currently implementing different waste heat recovery processes and the integration of renewable energy sources (RES) – solar thermal collectors – is ongoing, which turns them into an optimal test case for the analysis of RES integration and its direct impact on the production.

As one of SO WHAT’s demosites, M&R will test and validate the project’s tool to analyze those Waste Heat and Cold valorisation processes.

1-Visit to ENCE demosite 20191105_124032

SO WHAT visits ENCE’s demosite

Last November 5th, SO WHAT project members from CARTIF, FAEN and ELEUKON visited the ENCE Pulp Mill in Navia, Spain, one of the project’s validation sites. 

ENCE is Spain’s leading producer of renewable energy using biomass, with a production capacity of more than 950,000 tons per year of high quality eucalyptus pulp through its plants in Navia (Asturias) and Pontevedra. Pulp mills are relevant producers of waste heat, and as such ENCE has already identified a first project, consisting in the heat recovery from bleaching and causticization stages to exploit it in a biomass dryer.

As one of SO WHAT’s demosites, ENCE will use the project’s tool to analyse its manufacturing processes and it will benefit the experience of some consortium partners in Waste Heat valorisation processes. 


So What Upcoming workshop and panel!

The SO WHAT project is holding a Design Thinking Session at the YUST hotel in Antwerp, Belgium, on the evening of Tuesday, December 10th!

This event aims at bringing together European players active in the energy and industrial sectors, public authorities, ESCOs, and energy agencies.

Participants will help to define, via a participatory approach, the requirements for an integrated software to audit and map energy processes and to recover heat and cold wasted to match local demand.

In addition, there will be a networking session with drinks after the workshop, so that all the assistants can meet and interact with stakeholders.

The event is free upon registration through this link:

And on the following day, December 11th, we are participating in the panel Smart District Heating networks as part of smart cities, at the Provincial Government Building in Antwerp.

This conference is part of the event Smart District Heating in Antwerp and it is intended for everyone involved in heating, both from the public and private sectors. The session will count with the participation of top speakers from Ireland, the Netherlands, Germany, and Denmark. 

Don’t miss this chance and join us there!


First So What Newsletter!

Take a look on our first Newsletter where you will find general information about the project and its main scope. Keep posted to the news we will be releasing and don’t hesitate to subscribe to our three-monthly Newsletter!


So What project up and running!

We finally kicked off our So What project on June 4 and 5! For 36 months we will be working hard to achieve the goals expected for this project.

On the picture you can see that there were many people attending the meeting, hosted by IESVE at the Gran Canal hotel in Dublin (Ireland).


So What project, Supporting new Opportunities for Waste Heat And cold valorisation Towards EU decarbonization

The SO WHAT project (acronym for Supporting new Opportunities for Waste Heat And cold valorisation Towards EU decarbonization) main objective is to develop and demonstrate an integrated software which will support industries and energy utilities in selecting, simulating and comparing alternative Waste Heat and Waste Cold (WH/C) exploitation technologies that could cost-effectively balance the local forecasted Heat&Cold demand also via renewable energy sources (RES) integration.

The SO WHAT integrated tool will be designed to support industries, and energy utilities in:

1) auditing the industrial process to understand where WH/WC could be valorised

2) mapping the potential of locally available RES sources to be integrated with WH/WC potential

3) mapping the local forecasted demand for heating and cooling

4) define and simulate alternative cost-effective scenarios based on WH/WC technologies also leveraging TES introduction

5) evaluate the impacts (in terms of energetic, economic and environmental KPIs) that the adoption of the new scenarios will generate against the current situation (i.e., baseline) both at industrial and local level

6) promoting innovative contractual arrangements and financing models to guarantee economically viable solutions and less risky investments.

To do so SO WHAT will capitalize already existing tool and knowledge from previous research experiences (REEMAIN, PLANHEAT, REUSEHEAT, CELSIUS…) and the expertise of 11 industrial validation sites from different REII/ non-REII sectors (petrochemical, chemical, metallurgic, food etc.) that will be involved in

the project to validate the tool and provide relevant insights for its development. SOWHAT tool will be built indeed following a participatory approach involving both National clusters from Spain, Portugal, Belgium, Sweden, Romania (composed by local industries, public authorities/energy agencies, energy utilities/ESCOs) and external stakeholder since the very beginning of the development in order to have a wide, clear and structured promotion of WH/C also thanks to a robust training campaign and policy oriented dissemination actions.

The So What consortium is formed by 20 partners coming from 9 different European countries.