Pan-European Thermal Atlas (PETA)

Pan-European Thermal Atlas



The Pan-European Thermal Atlas (Peta) is a comprehensive resource that provides information and data on thermal energy sources across Europe. It offers a detailed overview of the potential for harnessing thermal energy, including sources such as geothermal, waste, solar thermal, and biomass. It was developed within the Heat Roadmap Europe project series to map the heat sector and the potential for district heating in European countries. The mapping team improved Peta and extended it to incorporate the 27 EU member states plus the United Kingdom. Seeing benefits in mapping disaggregated energy efficiency potentials of different sectors, Peta is being developed into a cross-sectoral mapping platform. The interactive atlas provides visual representations of the existing heat demand distribution and the associated costs of investing in new heating grid infrastructure. Additionally, it presents a summary of the energy efficiency potentials in buildings, taking into account population and socio-economic development at the NUTS3 regional level. The atlas includes an assessment of energy efficiency potentials for 1,608 energy-intensive industrial sites, quantifying on-site energy savings based on the most advanced technologies currently available (BAT). The atlas also highlights the potential for off-site excess heat recovery in district heating systems, which can be utilized to supply residential and service sector buildings within a maximum distance of 10 km from current district heating areas. To facilitate understanding, the results have been transformed into geographical representations, depicted through the Pan-European energy-saving surface and the excess heat recovery surface, both presented with contour lines. This web-based platform serves as a central repository for thermal energy data, combining information from various sources and stakeholders across Europe. It offers interactive maps, charts, and tools that enable users to explore and analyze thermal energy potential at regional, national, and local scales.






Scale of implementation

The Pan-European Thermal Atlas is designed to be implemented at a pan-European scale. It provides data and resources for assessing thermal energy potential across Europe, covering multiple countries and regions.



The Pan-European Thermal Atlas is a web-based platform accessible through a web browser. It operates as an online tool and resource hub for thermal energy data and information.


Phase of solution

Thermal Atlas primarily operates in the pre-deployment and planning phase of thermal energy projects. It supports users in evaluating the thermal energy potential of specific areas, facilitating informed decision-making during the early stages of project development, including site selection and technology identification.


Target audience

The Pan-European Thermal Atlas targets policymakers, government agencies, researchers, energy planners, investors, developers, and professionals working in thermal energy. It provides data, tools, and resources that can be used to assess thermal energy potential, plan projects, and make informed investment decisions for a variety of stakeholders across Europe.

Key features-functionality


The key features and functionalities of the Pan-European Thermal Atlas include:

  1. Thermal Energy Data: The atlas provides comprehensive data on thermal energy sources, including geothermal, waste heat, solar thermal, and biomass, across Europe. It offers detailed information on the availability and potential of these energy sources.
  2. Interactive Mapping Tools: Users can access interactive maps and charts to visualize and analyze thermal energy potential at various scales, from regional to local. These tools help identify areas with high thermal energy potential and support decision-making processes.
  3. Resource Assessment Tools: The atlas provides tools for assessing the potential energy generation from thermal sources. Users can estimate the capacity and output of thermal energy systems, helping in the planning and optimization of projects.
  4. Planning Support: The atlas supports project planning by assisting in site selection, technology identification, and system design for thermal energy applications such as district heating and cooling, industrial processes, and renewable energy integration.
  5. Policy Development: Policymakers and government agencies can utilize the atlas to develop policies and regulations related to thermal energy utilization.
  6. Case Studies and Best Practices: The atlas showcases case studies and best practices in thermal energy projects across Europe. Users can learn from successful implementations and gain insights into the challenges and opportunities associated with different thermal energy applications.

References & Sources for Further Reading


  • Pan-European Thermal Atlas,
  • Heat Roadmap Europe project,
  • Persson U, Wiechers E, Möller B, Werner S. Heat Roadmap Europe: Heat distribution costs. Energy, 2019, 176: 604-622.
  • Möller B, Wiechers E, Persson U, Grundahl L, Lund RS, Mathiesen BV. Heat Roadmap Europe: Towards EU-Wide, Local Heat Supply Strategies. Energy, 2019, 177: 554-564.
  • Möller B, Wiechers E, Persson U, Grundahl L,Connolly D. Heat Roadmap Europe: Identifying local heat demand and supply areas with a European thermal atlas. Energy, 2018; 158: 281-292.
  • Persson U, Möller B, Werner S. Heat Roadmap Europe: Identifying strategic heat synergy regions. Energy Policy 2014; 74: 663-681.
  • Werner S. European space cooling demands. Energy, September 2016.
  • Questions and comments:Bernd Möller, Europa-Universität Flensburg, email: