The INZELL (INdustrieZELLe—industrial cell) research project examines the grid support¹ and system services² provided by an industrial cell³ with island grid capability and renewable energy. It was launched in 2020 and runs until end of 2023. The industrial cell, in this case is the "Max Bögl Group" in industrial plan in Sengenthal, Germany.
Max Bögl operates in the fields of mobility, renewable energy, housing, building construction, and infrastructure. With more than 6,500 highly qualified employees at 40 locations world-wide and an annual turnover of over 2 billion euros, they're one of the largest companies in the German construction industry.
- Medium-voltage power grid spanning 30 kilometers
- 25 transformer stations
- Peak load: 6.3 MW (total peak load for Germany: 65-70 GW on a normal day)
- Power consumption per year: 25.5 GWh (equivalent to the average energy demand of a town with approx. 30,000 residents)
- Generation peak:10.5MW
- Annual generation: 29 GWh
- Wind turbines:9.6MW
- Rooftop photovoltaic systems: 2.5 MW
- 1,7-MWp floating PV park
- CHP steam engine: 0.4 MW
- Battery storage facility: 2.5 MW/2.25 MWh
Industrial plants increasingly costsensitive manufacturing processes require a highly reliable power supply. At the same time, however, the suppression of large-scale power plants is creating vulnerabilities when it comes to system security, particularly in the following areas:
- the reactive power in the transmission network, where—despite an increase in provision—increasing deficits in the availability of reactive power have been predicted,
- the instantaneous reserve, which is no longer inherent in many generation and procurement plants, and
- grid restoration, which until now, has been planned using large-scale power plants.
Many industrial plants already have their own generation facilities in order to be less dependent on electricity procurement costs. Indepenadent security and a high-quality supply will also become increasingly important, as extended power outages and voltage dips in the public power grid can cause production downtime and damage, resulting in high costs.
As part of the research project, investigations are being carried out that examine unresolved issues and aspects of research relating to the optimal interaction of different energy generation plants, storage facilities, and load management systems. During this project, the Max Bögl industrial cell can function as an island grid if any power supply interruptions occur. The aim is also to contribute to efforts for ensuring the stability⁴ of the public power grid in a more cost-effective manner. Following this approach, industrial plants will become increasingly significant to the successful and cost-effective implementation of the energy transition.
The project is focused on developing automated plant deployment and a grid manager (industrial computer with various grid management programs). The combined use of a grid manager and automated plant deployment planning will open up new possibilities for the provision of system services and, thus, the provision of grid support through the Max Bögl industrial cell. In addition, multiple field tests will be carried out on the island grid operation to test for a scenario in which the external power supply fails.
Commissioning the battery storage facility at “Max Bögl Group” industrial plant in Sengenthal, Germany.
How did OMICRON get involved in the project?
OMICRON Engineering Services (OES) tested protection devices in Max Bögl’s network on several occasions before the project was launched. With OES, OMICRON offers its customers a global service process that supports them with the planning, commissioning, and maintenance of secondary technology installations.
OES also performs network calculations and calculates protection settings. Therefore, it made sense for OES to verify the protection settings resulting from the research project again—to have a second opinion. Within the scope of Max Bögl’s order, OES will also parameterize the protection devices and, where necessary, make adjustments to the device hardware or replace the protection devices. Lastly, OES will be on site during the field tests to assist if any problems arise.
Research and project management:
Regensburg University of Applied Sciences (OTH Regensburg)
Technical University of Munich (TUM)
Clausthal University of Technology (TUC)
Max Bögl Wind AG
Bayernwerk Netz GmbH
Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy GmbH & Co. KG.
OMICRON Engineering Services
Measurements are being carried out to record the reactions of different elements in the network—e. g., solar inverters—and correctly integrate them into the simulations. For example, how quickly does an inverter react to newly issued specifications for reactive and active power? Latency periods in the various communication networks are also recorded so they can be properly incorporated into the island grid’s power regulations. Thus, the simulation models are almost complete.
Once the simulation models are ready, the next step is to evaluate the current plant protection concept and adapt it where necessary. Likewise, the planned control concept for the island grid operation will be assessed in various scenarios before it can be applied in field tests.
The concept is currently being evaluated using a test setup for the island grid with various components from the future network to determine whether it’s feasible and whether the underlying assumptions regarding the control behavior of the different components are correct.
Various preparations are currently underway for the field tests on the actual site grid:
- expansion of the battery storage facility to include the necessary grid-forming functionality for the island grid operation
- installation of measurement equipment in the site grid for the field tests
- evelopment of a plant deployment plan and a load forecast tool for parallel grid operation
- installation of the grid manager (industrial PC) and connection to the communication networks in the Max Bögl site grid.
In part 2 of the series of articles on the INZELL project (available in issue 2/2023 of the OMICRON Magazine), you will find more detailed information about the project, the tasks being carried out by those involved, and the unexpected challenges that couldn’t be foreseen when the project first launched.
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The grid is supported by the energy generation plant.
Services that power grid operators provide in order to ensure the functionality and quality of the power supply. These are services that power grid operators provide in addition to the transmission and distribution of electricity, such as:
- maintenance of power frequency stability
- maintenance of voltage stability
- power supply restoration
- operational management/grid bottleneck management.
An energy cell within an industrial plant. In this case, the Max Bögl Group functions as an autonomous island grid with its entire supply chain using internal renewable energy generation plants (i. e., if the external power supply is disrupted or fails in the event of an incident).
⁴Definition of stability and supporting stability
This is about taking advantage of the opportunities offered by the various inverters in the site grid (PV, wind power, battery) in such a way that they help the grid operator to ensure/maintain stability. For example, during a short-circuit fault in the grid, the inverters can make reactive power available to support the supply voltage.