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Development of referentials for belgian quality in distributed renewable energy concepts (Q-DIRECT)

Research project SD/EN/04B (Research action SD)

Persons :

  • Dr.  VANDAELE Luk - Belgian Building Research Institute (BBRI)
    Financed belgian partner
    Duration: 1/1/2009-31/1/2011
  • Dhr.  VAN PASSEL Willy - Hogeschool voor Wetenschap en Kunst (HWK)
    Financed belgian partner
    Duration: 1/1/2009-31/1/2011
  • Prof. dr.  DRIESEN Johan - Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (KU Leuven)
    Financed belgian partner
    Duration: 1/1/2009-31/1/2011
  • Prof. dr.  DE RUYCK Jacques - Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB)
    Financed belgian partner
    Duration: 1/1/2009-31/1/2011

Description :


Renewable energy markets are increasing in different technological areas giving rise to rapid technical evolutions and a lagging of qualified professional structures. Good quality installations are essential for end customer satisfaction but just as much a necessity for the sustainable growth of the renewable energy implementation.
Bad examples & installations have proven to have the capacity to throw back the acceptance of a new technology by several years or decades, as has been experienced in the solar thermal and heat pump sector in the past. Quality assurance measures are the only way to minimise the number of bad examples.
Q-DIRECT will structure the quality requirements in a thorough manner such that the different industrial sectors of distributed small scale renewable energy systems are provided with an instrument to successfully implement quality systems.

Project description


The main objectives of the project are :
- To develop and provide an integrative structure and basis for normative work on the technologies under consideration taking into account cross-links with conventional technologies
- To develop and provide an extensive and coordinated technological roadmap for the development of quality systems & labelling of the six technologies under consideration
- To prepare the implementation phase of these quality systems by studying the institutional, procedural and organisation and financial aspects
These aspects will be covered for the 5 renewable energy technologies as indicated below combined with integration aspects into the electrical grid & building related.


It is important to first investigate the state of the art of market, supply chain and ongoing & foreseen technological evolutions as well as the quality systems and standardisation (normalisation) that are linked in some way to the technologies under consideration, are presented in an extensive and structured manner.

Based on this ‘inventory’ common syntheses reports will be drafted in the frame of work packages 3 and 4 with respect to the technical respectively organisational aspects for the realisation of quality systems & regulations for distributed (renewable) energy systems.

These research reports will serve as a basis for:
- Development of technological roadmaps for the implementation of quality systems for the technologies in full development.
- Participating in international normalisation committees, initialisation of national committees or working groups
- development of testing infrastructures by the participating research institutes (grid connection, biomass heating equipment, heat pumps, ...)

A similar approach will be followed for the organisational and implementation related aspects of the quality requirements and quality systems.
Due to the continuous and rapid evolutions in the technologies under consideration, quality requirements and systems equally evolve correspondingly. Therefore a bi-annual update of the situation is necessary and will have to result in feedback towards the developed referentials for quality systems & regulations.

Interaction between partners

Interaction between the different partners & research institutes will be as follows :
- Analysis reports of work package 2 will incorporate all contributions of the research organisations ; ‘inter-technology’ working groups will handle horizontal cross-technology issues (e.g. grid connection or building technical installation issues, testing aspects, …). The results of the inter-technology work will be incorporated in the same documents ;
- Both Work package 3 and Work Package 4 start with an integrative synthesis analysis in which the task team will identify the common bases of the work realised on all technologies
- Work Package 3 and 4 result in a technical and organisational roadmap for quality systems and these will integrate all work of all partners
- Work package 3 will result in an “Action & Subject List for Normative Work” for Belgian actors incorporating the research results of all partners.

Expected results

The first work package assures the coordination of this multi-disciplinary and broad scope project.

The second work package establishes the state of the art with respect to technology, supply chain and quality systems. Special attential is given to international standardisation, normative framework and quality systems to ensure maximum use of existing experiences. Beside the evident advantages of efficiencygains, the ligning up with international evolutions support the international market position of belgian technology producers.

The third work package lays a common basis for the quality systems for the different technologies. Common elements such as aspects related to electric grid interfaces and the integration into the built environment will be studied.
Finally a complete quality referential for each envisaged technology will be developed. In addition, a roadmap will be developed for a step-wise introduction in time of increasing levels of ambition after a discussion with sector federations (market feasibility) and public authority (requirements for public support schemes).WP4 studies the institutional, procedural and organisation aspects, including a study of feasible financing options for the implementation of quality systems.


R & D organisation: Relevant core competences & know-how

3E: solar thermal, PV and small wind turbines : Quality systems development, technology and market analysis, technology and market analysis, product design

CRA-W: Small & medium scale biomass systems : Test stand, product innovation, standardisation,…

De Nayer Instituut:
Solar water heater systems : Test site solar water heater performance testing, system design and system measurements of residential HP systems.
Heat pump systems : Design and in situ measurements of domestic ventilation systems with heat recuperation

WTCB: Building integration aspects : Product testing & modelling, installation quality, standardisation and performance regulation work

KU Leuven: Electrical integration aspects: Test stand grid connection, standardisation, grid management know how

Contact information


Luc De Gheselle
3E nv
Rue du Canal 61
B-1000 Brussel
Tel: +32 (0)2 229 15 12
Fax: +32 (0)2 219 79 89


Jacques De Ruyck
Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB)
Faculteit Toegepaste Wetenschappen
Departement Mechanica
Pleinlaan 2
B-1000 Brussel
Tel: +32 (02) 629.23.93
Fax: +32 (0)2 629.28.65

Luk Vandaele
Belgian Building Research Institute (BBRI)
Lozenberg I 7
B-1932 Sint-Stevens-Woluwe
Tel:+32 (0)2 716 44 10
Fax:+32 (0)2 725 3212

Maarten Sourbron
Hogeschool voor Wetenschap en Kunst – Campus De Nayer Instituut
De Nayerlaan 5,
B-2860 Sint Katelijne Waver
Tel: +32 (0)15 31 69 44
Fax:+32 (0)15 31 74 53

Johan Driesen
Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
Dept. Electrical Engineering
Kasteelpark Arenberg 10.
B-3001 Heverlee
Tel: +32 (0)16 32 10 20
Fax: +32 (0)16 32 19 85

Follow-up committee

Christiaan Crucke - Fedelec
Manuel De Nicolo - Ministère de la Région Wallonne
M. Frère - Faculté Polytechnique de Mons
K. Loncke - Eandis
Joris Mampaey - ATIC
Didier Marchal - ValBiom asbl
Philippe Ngendakumana - Université de Liège
Dominique Perrin - SPF Santé publique, Sécurité de la Chaîne alimentaire et Environnement
I. Piette - ATIC
S. Plettinck - Institut Bruxellois pour la Gestion de l'Environnement
Dirk Smeets - Qualibouw
Marianne Squilbin - Institut Bruxellois pour la Gestion de l'Environnement
Dirk Van de Wynckel - BouwUnie
Dirk Van Den Branden - VENTIBEL
Frans Van Hulle - EWEA
Guy Verbunt - Belsolar
E Waumans - UBF - ACA

Documentation :

Development of quality references in distributed renewable energy concepts (Q-DIRECT) : final report  Huberlant, Gérard - Vandaele, Luk - De Ruyck, Jacques ... et al  Brussels : Federal Science Policy, 2011 (SP2316)
[To download]  [To order

Ontwikkeling van referentiedocumenten voor Belgische kwaliteitssystemen voor kleinschalige hernieuwbare energiesystemen : samenvatting van de resultaten    Brussel: Federaal Wetenschapsbeleid, 2011 (SP2319)
[To download

Dévelopement de référentiels qualité pour la production décentralisée d’énergies renouvelables en Belgique : résumés des résultats    Bruxelles : Politique scientifique fédérale, 2011 (SP2320)
[To download

Development of quality references in distributed renewable energy concepts : summary of results    Brussels : Federal Science Policy, 2011 (SP2321)
[To download

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