The TEI research group of the Department of Flow, Heat and Combustion Mechanics of Ghent University focuses on industrial thermal energy systems where thermodynamic cycle or process analysis is the main tool.

Several advanced technologies such as Organic Rankine Cycles (ORC), industrial heat pumps, combined heat and power systems, heat storage and heat networks are subject of basic or applied research. Industrial energy efficiency and in particular industrial waste heat recovery is one of the main drivers of our research.

The main research topics of the research group Thermal Energy in Industry are


  • Energy efficiency of thermal systems in industry, waste heat recovery.
  • (Organic) Rankine Cycle technology, industrial heat pumps, combined heat and power, heat storage.
  • Volumetric compressor and expander design.
  • Process integration and optimization methods.
  • Heat networks, district heating.

Basic research includes the design and development of new systems (e.g. advanced ORC or heat pump architectures) and components (e.g. optimized single screw expander).


The integration of advanced energy conversion technology in industrial processes is also a focus point. The research ranges from case studies in existing situations to improved process integration methodologies.

Simulation work is complemented by experiments and tests in the laboratory. A 250 kW heat source and cooling loop currently accommodates a 10 kWe ORC test system and a high temperature heat pump in development. All systems are equipped with a state of the art control- and acquisition system.

Our group has also been very instrumental through several projects in technology transfer of promising new technology to industry.

Last but not least, our group has a long track record of services to industry ranging from consultancy work to B2B projects and providing customized training sessions.