COMPOSE (Compare Options for Sustainable Energy) is a techno-economic energy-project assessment model developed at Aalborg University in Denmark in 2008 [1, 2]. It allows for the evaluation of user-defined sustainable energy projects in user-defined energy-systems allowing for user-selected methodology options. The mission is for COMPOSE to combine the strength of energy-project operational simulation models with the strength of energy-system scenario models in order to arrive at a modelling framework that supports an increasingly realistic and qualified comparative assessment of sustainable-energy options. The aim of COMPOSE is to assess to which degree energy projects may support intermittency, while generally offering a realistic evaluation of the distribution of costs and benefits under uncertainty. The model is currently on version 1.06, and it can be freely downloaded from [1]. Currently four people have downloaded the model and to complete a typical analysis using COMPOSE, three days of training are required.

The model currently allows for the user to calculate the relocation coefficient for a user-defined energy project in a user-defined energy system. This user-defined system means that COMPOSE can simulate all financial aspects as well as all thermal-generation, renewable energy, storage and conversion, and transport technologies, in a single-project investigation. However, the model does focus particularly on cogeneration with an electric boiler or compression heat-pump. Current functionality focuses on the modelling framework design. User-defined uncertainties may be specified to allow for extensive risk analyses, for example specifying uncertainty ranges for wind production. Special features currently include Monte Carlo risk assessments, integrated Wiki [1], import of projects from energyPRO, import/export of hourly distributions from EnergyPLAN, import of climate data for localization of distributions from RetSCREEN. The analysis is carried out using a one-hour time-step over a user-defined number of years. In coming releases, COMPOSE will increasingly improve the evaluation of energy projects in a project-system hybrid perspective with respect to fossil energy consumption, emissions, economic costs, financial costs, fiscal costs, employment, balance of payment, and distributional aspects of costs and benefits. The vision is to establish COMPOSE as a cost-benefit and cost-effectiveness toolbox for private and public decision-makers.

COMPOSE has been used in [2] to help identify options for dealing with intermittency related to the large-scale penetration of wind power on the West Danish energy-system. It has also been used in [3] to analyse the benefits of energy storage and relocation options (such as the integration of heat pumps with CHP plants). COMPOSE evaluates energy storage and relocation options in any given energy system, and is not subject to any limitations with respect to system-level renewable-energy penetration rates.


  1. EnergyInteractive.NET, Aalborg University, 11th June 2009,
  2. Blarke, M. B. The missing link in sustainable energy: Techno-economic consequences of large-scale heat pumps in distributed generation in favour of a domestic integration strategy for sustainable energy, 2008. Ph.D. Thesis, Department of Development and Planning, Aalborg University, Aalborg, Denmark.
  3. Blarke, M. B. & Lund, H., The effectiveness of storage and relocation options in renewable energy systems.Renewable Energy, 33(7), pp. 1499-1507, 2008.