Sun and wind power can provide all the energy this world needs. Clean energy solutions are increasingly competitive against ever more expensive conventional energy systems. However, switching to renewables-based power supply, poses technological and commercial challenges.
Turning off the generator
Technologically, the challenge lies in the need to match electricity generation
to changing demand at any given moment. Our existing centralized energy infrastructure relies on large, mostly fossil fuel-powered generators to keep supply and demand in balance. The inertia of the rotating mass of coal and other thermal power plants acts as a buffer. This gives plant operators enough time to adjust production to changes in demand. It also keeps both voltage and frequency in safe boundaries.
Intermittent energy sources like solar and wind power provide a clean,
but fluctuating power supply. Thus, when renewables are added to the grid, thermal generators need to rapidly adjust not only to changes in demand, but also to changes in supply (for instance due to a sudden gust of wind causing turbines to spin faster or clouds temporarily covering solar modules).
This dependence on generators dramatically limits the use of safe renewable energy to a maximum of only 15 to 30 percent annually - depending on the grid size. Coal, nuclear, gas or Diesel-power plants always need to produce the lion‘s share of electricity, creating an inherent dependence on conventional generators.
We combine reliable storage with innovative grid control and energy management solutions to break this dependence on conventional generators, enabling a safe, stable and clean power supply based on sun and wind energy.
New business models
Commercially, current market designs and the legacy of centralized fossil-fuel systems often make it very difficult to capitalize on permanent savings that renewables can already deliver today. Financing can also be a challenge.
That‘s why we have identified markets and pioneered business models where our Megawatt-scale Battery Parks and Island Systems outcompete fossil-based systems even today.