On-site power firm INNIO has delivered a giant Jenbacher gas engine as the first of five such gen-sets to provide power for a district heating plant in Saarbrücken, Germany.
The transition to gas-fired power is part of the GAMOR plant’s move to phase out the coal-fired portion of its operations. The 50MW Römerbrücke district heating plant is operated by Energie SaarLorLux in Saarbrücken and was converted to gas as its primary fuel in 2003.
The commissioning of the additional, new gas power plant in 2022 will result in the complete phaseout of coal, which lately has only been used to cover peak loads, according to INNIO.
“By bringing in our new INNIO Jenbacher CHP plant, the generation of power and district heating from coal will soon be a thing of the past in Saarbrücken,” Joachim Morsch, board member and spokesman from Energie SaarLorLux, said in a statement. “In the future we’ll save more than 60,000 metric tons of CO2 a year compared to the old coal-fired facility.”
A heavy haul truck with 4+10 axles made the nearly 750-km (450 miles) journey from Jenbach, Austria to Saarbrücken, carrying the 93 metric-ton Jenbacher engine.
At the heart of the new Römerbrücke gas engine power plant are five Jenbacher J920 FleXtra gas engines with an output totaling 50MW and an overall efficiency of up to 92%. In the years ahead, GAMOR will be able to supply around 65,000 households with electricity and 13,000 homes with district heating.
Germany intends to phase out coal entirely by 2038 at the latest; in this coming year alone, coal-fired power plants with a total output of 12.5GW are projected to go offline, according to the release.
The fast start capability of the INNIO gas engines are considered an efficient solution to complement renewable energies, since energy generated from renewable sources can fluctuate greatly due to the variability of weather conditions.
Energie SaarLorLux AG, headquartered in Saarbrücken, is owned by ENGIE Deutschland GmbH and Stadtwerke Saarbrücken GmbH.
INNIO owns the Jenbacher and Waukesha portfolio of on-site power generation engines. The engine brands have long histories, but INNIO was created when investment firm Advent International acquired GE’s Distributed Power business in 2018.