Technology at Heart: Energy efficiency and new energy systems in Switzerland

8 February 2023

How can you make sustainable aviation...

How can you make sustainable aviation fuel out of sunlight? What does it take to scale up heat pump systems for district heating and cooling? How can rail transport be even more energy-efficient?

Orgalim’s latest edition of Technology at Heart, out today, delves into the technology solutions that are driving the energy transition in Europe, highlighting the opportunities, the obstacles, and the implications for policymaking.

Produced by Orgalim in collaboration with Swiss technology industries association, Swissmem, the report features case studies from three pioneering Swiss technology companies and uncovers the secrets of Switzerland’s success as the most innovative country in the world and a leader in new energy systems technologies.

As Malte Lohan, Orgalim’s Director General, writes in the foreword to the report:

The energy crisis has focused policy minds firmly on the urgent need to accelerate the energy transition in Europe. All the attention now is on how to do it right.

As the International Energy Agency emphasised at the close of 2022, to avoid gas shortages in the EU in 2023, policy actions need to focus on accelerating the electrification of heat, enabling more rapid deployment of renewables, and incentivising faster improvements in energy efficiency.

  Policy actions need to focus on accelerating the electrification of heat, enabling more rapid deployment of renewables, and incentivising faster improvements in energy efficiency. 

Malte Lohan

The good news is the technologies to do all these things already exist and European companies are leaders in many of them, as the case studies in this report show. Focusing on Swiss technology companies, one tells how the Danish port city of Esbjerg is weaning itself off coal-fired power by implementing an innovative, large-scale heat pump system to supply electrified district heating to 100,000 inhabitants.

Another involves pioneering technology to harness energy directly from the sun and produce synthetic aviation fuel, without any burden on the electricity grid. The third demonstrates the potential to drive energy efficiency in the transport sector, the second biggest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in the EU. Between them, they demonstrate both the importance of sector coupling to increase the linkages between different parts of the energy system, and of technology neutrality, so as not to limit those linkages.

By shining a light on these leading-edge cases and the Swiss high-tech manufacturing ecosystem from which they emerged, this issue of Technology at Heart aims to contribute valuable insights to support efforts to accelerate the transition to a renewable, resilient and efficient European energy system.

Read the full report here or download in PDF below.


Orgalim produces Technology at Heart regularly to showcase how the technology industries we represent are driving the green, digital and resilient transitions, and to identify enablers and obstacles that can inform policymaking. Check out other reports in the series here.

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