Lichtenau Technology Centre: Committed centre of excellence for renewable energy

The Lichtenau Technology Centre (TZL) is a centre of excellence and think tank for new, forward-thinking energy solutions. The centre offers young companies and start-ups in the renewable energy sector affordable office space to set up shop. The TZL also leads by example, using renewable energy sources to power and heat their building. Additionally, the TZL boasts a varied calendar of events pertaining to renewable energy.

Climate-friendly power supply, e-bikes for residents in Lichtenau and a diverse programme of events: The offerings of the TZL are unique in the Paderborn region. The low-energy building, completed in 2005, exclusively draws on renewable energy sources. The roof is equipped with a photovoltaic system that generates power for the building below.

Any additional electricity demands are met by wind energy provided by WestfalenWIND, a local energy supplier headquartered in the TZL. The centre also uses a geothermal system for heating and cooling. The centre’s energy supply is thus 100 per cent carbon neutral, which saves some 55 tonnes of CO2 emissions from entering the atmosphere annually. It would take almost 10 acres of forest to absorb that amount of CO2 in a year. The TZL is committed to saving even more energy; plans are in place to install efficient LED lighting by mid-2018.

Climate protection objective:

  • Conversion to LED lighting throughout the building until mid-2018

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Photo: TZL

Local renewable energy supply up close – The roof of the TZL features 1,000 m² of photovoltaic cells. The system feeds 125,000 kWh of energy into the grid every year. The TZL is also in close proximity to the Buchgarten community wind farm.

Regional networks

A working group of representatives from TZL-based companies, local Lichtenau officials, interested citizen groups and the town’s climate protection manager regularly meet in the TZL to discuss and launch new, innovative projects in the renewable energy field. The Westphalia Civilian Energy Trust (Bürger- und Energiestiftung Westfalen), founded in November 2016, financially supports outstanding initiatives. The TZL regularly hosts regional networking events pertaining to renewable energy that are open to industry members and to the public.

Testing new technologies

The TZL offers residents of Lichtenau the opportunity to rent five e-bikes provided by the Lichtenau municipal utilities. The bikes can be charged at one of two charging stations located at the TZL. There is also an electric car available for complimentary use as well as three double electric-car charging stations.

Photo: Günter Voß

Climate protection needs a homeland. The TZL gives people, multipliers and opinions on renewable energies a home.

Günther Voß, Climate protection manager, City of Lichtenau