MCDM for sustainability ranking of district heating systems considering uncertainties

Haichao Wang, Risto Lahdelma

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterScientificpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


This chapter proposes a multicriteria decision making (MCDM) method for choosing suitable and sustainable district heating (DH) system considering uncertainties. In this chapter, seven candidate DH systems are evaluated by the stochastic multicriteria acceptability analysis (SMAA) method. SMAA is able to handle the uncertainties of the criteria performance values (PVs) and the weighting at the same time. These uncertainties are very common and typical in real-life, but in most cases are not treated in the right manner, or just neglected. In this chapter, we use a probability distribution function (PDF), a Monte Carlo simulation, and the concept of feasible weight space (FWS) to handle the uncertainties. The model is demonstrated in a case study in China and the results show that the proposed method is capable of giving more reliable and flexible results when the uncertainties are considered. The method can also be extended to other energy systems.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLife Cycle Sustainability Assessment for Decision-Making
Subtitle of host publicationMethodologies and Case Studies
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9780128183557
Publication statusPublished - 2020
MoE publication typeA3 Book section, Chapters in research books


  • District heating (DH)
  • Feasible weight space (FWS)
  • Monte Carlo simulation
  • Multicriteria decision making (MCDM)
  • Ranking
  • Stochastic multicriteria acceptability analysis (SMAA)
  • Uncertainty
  • Weighting


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