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AmBIENCE (Active managed Buildings with Energy performaNce Contracting) is a European project coordinated by EnergyVille/VITO. The main goal of this project is to enhance and refine the energy performance contracting models and extend the models to Active Building Performance Contracts by embedding ICT and IoT smart solutions. AmBIENCE began in early June 2019 and is a H2020 project funded by the European Commission. The project counts on the participation of ENEA, INESC TEC, EDP CNET, IK4, ENERGINVEST and BPIE.  


Closed project



Energy performance contracting (EPC) is not new. The aim of EPC’s is to lower the energy use of a company or a building in the long run. Together with an Energy Service Company (ESCo) a specific timeframe is determined within which the energy savings need to be realised. The energy performance of a building or company is improved while at the same time the return of investment is guaranteed by the energy savings.

The AmBIENCE goes beyond the current approach and investigates how the dynamic energy efficiency can be included into EPC modelling. The majority of the current energy performance contracting approaches and concepts consider only the building’s ‘passive’ energy efficiency. This passive energy efficiency takes into account static design parameters, such as level of insulation, compactness, climate areas, etc. of a building, but does not present the dynamic energy efficiency of a building. The idea in AmBIENCe is to move from this static status and dynamically monitor the energy performance of the buildings that are equipped with active control systems such as smart sensors or smart algorithms.

Additionally, energy performance modelling is currently mainly applied in tertiary use and public buildings. As a consequence, there is an untapped potential to apply these practices to a wider range of buildings with enhanced capabilities in building levels. The AmBIENCe project not only proposes an extended dynamic EPC concept and model but also provides the business model for its implementation by valorising the flexibility in the buildings.

In doing so, the AmBIENCe project aims at empowering and activating the consumers by providing full transparency on energy consumption and billing as well as by providing to them the flexibility and capacity to act as prosumers.

The kick-off meeting of AmBIENCe took place in Brussels. Seven European institutions from five countries, which are part of the consortium, participated in this meeting: VITO (Belgium), ENEA (Italy), IK4 (Spain), INESC TEC (Portugal), ENERGINVEST (Belgium), EDP CNET (Portugal), BPIE (Belgium).

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 847054.

ambience kick-off
Chris Caerts


Chris Caerts

Project Manager Energy Technology at EnergyVille/VITO; Research line coordinator Thermal Systems at Energyville
Maarten De Groote


Maarten De Groote

Researcher Smart Energy and Built Environment at EnergyVille/VITO

ambience imageThere is also an Expert Talk related to this project about why buildings should not only consume less, but should also consume energy in a smarter way.

ABEPeM (Active Building Energy Performance Modelling)As a central component of this project, the ABEPeM (Active Building Energy Performance Modeling) tool was developed for which EnergyVille/VITO developed the modules for flexible electricity consumption and cost savings, and partner ENERGINVEST implemented the financial and economic part.