The Smart Way to Heat : Analysing the Performance of Smart Heating Compared to Established Heating Practices in Norwegian Homes
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- Master Thesis 
Europe’s rapid shift towards renewable energy and electrification has led to a global energy crisis with accelerating power prices. This development has raised our curiosity about whether smart heating can reduce consumer costs and prevent grid congestion. This thesis explores the performance of smart heating compared to non-smart heating practices in Norwegian homes. A case study of a demo house in Bergen is conducted using a mixed integer linear programming approach aiming to minimise cost. The interplay between technical building standards, climate, and electricity price fluctuations is considered. Furthermore, the performance of heating practices is evaluated based on total cost and electricity consumption. The study also considers two scenario analyses, which investigate the impact of building standards and price volatility on the performance of heating practices. Findings from the base case show that there is room for improvement in the heating behaviours in Norwegian homes. Smart heating reduces the total electricity cost and avoids grid congestion by utilising hours of low demand and the building’s heat-storing capacity. Although some of the non-smart heating behaviours have lower total electricity consumption, they impose an extensive load on the electricity grid at certain hours. Findings from the first scenario analysis show that a house’s construction standard is crucial for smart heating’s ability to heat efficiently. The higher heat loss of a TEK 97 house makes the smart behaviour less effective, indicated by the increased cost per kWh from NOK 1.84 to NOK 1.97. In addition, the second scenario analysis reveals that smart heating is superior during high price volatility, yet maintains a sustainable grid load distribution. This study conclusively reveals that smart heating is superior to non-smart heating in terms of cost efficiency and societal benefit. Findings show that implementing smart heating in Norwegian homes can save costs for householders while reducing the risk of grid congestion.