Putting the spark into the energy transition
- A combination of open-field PV park, battery storage system and marketing measures makes it possible to trade more renewable energy.
- PV park and storage system from the first innovation auction connected to the grid in Brandscheid, Rhineland-Palatinate
- EnBW offers battery optimization and direct marketing services for combined project operators.
Karlsruhe. Germany has ambitious aims: It wants renewable energy sources to supply 80 percent of the country’s electricity needs by 2030. In order to achieve this, more solar energy and battery storage systems are needed to help ease the load on the electricity grid. In the town of Brandscheid, Rhineland-Palatinate, EnBW has responded to this very need. In the Eifel region of Bitburg-Prüm, near the Belgian border, it is now operating an open-field solar park with connected battery storage system.
It is EnBW’s first solar park to have been backed by the innovation fund and the second in the state of Rhineland-Palatinate after Welgesheim. EnBW is responsible for marketing the solar park and battery storage system. It ensures that as much green energy as possible makes it onto the market so that it is available to every citizen.
On a 9.5-hectare site running alongside the A60 – roughly the size of 13 football fields – a solar park was built with an installed output of 7.6 megawatt-peak (MWp). The 17,160 solar modules can generate around eight million kilowatt-hours of electricity per year. This is the equivalent to the annual needs of around 2,300 households0Three-person household with an annual demand of around 3,500 kWh. In turn, this translates into a reduction in carbon emissions of around 5,000 metric tons. By way of comparison based on the global average, a tree takes about 20 years to absorb 500 kilograms of carbon0Source naturfund.de – in other words, 200,000 trees would be needed to absorb the same amount of carbon dioxide each year.
While the park is already producing electricity, further work needs to be carried out at the site. The entire area beneath the modules is being seeded to create extensive grassland. In addition, EnBW is planting numerous trees and shrubs and saplings on and around the solar park site.
The solar park’s feed-in capacity into the regional distribution grid is limited to 5.5 megawatts. A 2.7-megawatt battery storage system ensures that any excess energy generated can still be utilized. "The battery storage system only uses the locally generated PV electricity and feeds it into the grid as needed. In addition, the battery storage system makes it possible to feed all of the locally generated energy into the grid despite the smaller grid connection," says Tobias Wirsching, Manager Battery System Solutions at EnBW. Profitable marketing is the key to solar energy sooner or later becoming economically independent of any kind of funding.
EnBW has been successfully marketing electricity directly from solar parks for a number of years. The new aspect is the marketing of battery storage systems. The service is aimed at solar park operators with connected battery storage systems. "In Brandscheid, we have already been able to generate significant additional revenues compared to classic PV direct marketing without battery storage," says Marcel Schepers, Product Manager at EnBW.
Battery storage systems without solar or wind farms - so-called "stand-alone" large-scale storage systems - can also be marketed, and EnBW already has years of experience in this area. The only conditions in both cases: The storage system must be located in Germany. It should also be at least one megawatt in size and not be used to cover a company’s own needs.
With over 26,000 employees, EnBW is one of the largest energy companies in Germany and Europe. It supplies around 5.5 million customers with electricity, gas, water as well as services and products in the areas of infrastructure and energy. The expansion of renewable energies is a cornerstone of the growth strategy and a focus of investment. By the end of 2025, more than half of the generation portfolio is set to consist of renewable energies. Furthermore, the expansion of renewable energies is an important part of EnBW’s Sustainability Agenda as the company heads towards climate neutrality by 2035.
As part of a virtual power plant, EnBW networks many small-scale electricity generators and consumers of renewable energy. Find out more at www.interconnector.de.