The new gas engine CHP plant in Dresden generates 90MW of electricity and 84MW of heat, and is also black start capable. © Oliver Killig | SachsenEnergie AG
The flexible Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plant, supplied and built by the technology group Wärtsilä for the German public utility SachsenEnergie, has been commissioned and handed over for commercial operation.
The plant was extensively tested to verify its reliability and performance before the handover in November 2022. It will supply both 94MW of electrical power and 84MW of district heating for the city of Dresden.
The highly automated plant operates with eight Wärtsilä 31SG engines running on natural gas. The engines feature high efficiency and flexibility. Full output can be reached in five minutes or less from start-up, and they can synchronise with the grid in less than 30 seconds to provide immediate balancing capability.
This is important, both for the utility’s participation in balancing power markets, and to facilitate greater integration of renewables into the system.
“This greatly strengthens our generating capacity. After intensive testing and validation, we are confident that we can provide high efficiency for the winter while at the same time providing the necessary flexibility. The energy systems are undergoing a major upheaval. The energy transition with the goal of decarbonisation, i.e. the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels, requires innovative approaches for a sustainable and secure energy supply – this plant is part of the solution”, commented Dr. Frank Brinkmann, CEO of SachsenEnergie AG.
The plant was delivered by Wärtsilä on an engineering, procurement, and construction basis. Wärtsilä will also maintain the facility under a Guaranteed Asset Performance agreement for ten years, with a five-year extension option.
“Future-proofed, flexible gas engine technology is the best means to unlock the full potential of renewables, and to support the ambitious energy transition in Germany. We are very proud of the partnership with SachsenEnergie. Through projects like these, the journey towards 100% renewable energy future gains pace,” said Kenneth Engblom, vice president, Africa & Europe, Wärtsilä Energy.