Thermal Power

10 May 2023

GE and RWE Inaugurate Gas-Fired Grid Stability Power Plant in Germany

10 May 2023   

Biblis Plant. Image courtesy GE

GE Gas Power and renewable energy company RWE have inaugurated the Biblis gas-fired power plant, designed to provide dispatchable power and stability for the German grid.

The 300MW plant was constructed on a former car parking area site south of the Biblis nuclear power plant. It is located in the municipality of Biblis in the Bergstrasse district and started operation for Germany’s transmission system operators in March 2023.

The gas-fired power plant uses 11 units of GE’s flexible LM2500XPRESS aeroderivative turbine technology and GE’s gas-insulated-substation (GIS) equipment. It will only operate when needed, aiming to deliver power within 30 minutes upon request from a transmission system operator.

“With the plant in Biblis, we can feed in electricity quickly and flexibly at the request of the transmission grid operators and thus help to stabilize the grid in southern Hesse,” said Roger Miesen, CEO of RWE Generation.

The gas turbines are connected to the grid via a 380 kV high-voltage substation at the Biblis site. According to GE, the T168 gas-insulated-substation can help address the challenges of networks up to 550 kV for all applications including power generation, transmission, and heavy industry.

According to GE, the LM2500XPRESS can be installed quickly with the option of getting to full power in five minutes. It’s available in both simple and combined cycle configurations, for 50Hz and 60Hz utility providers.

Grid flexibility is important to the German government which is committed to achieving 80% of renewable energy generation for the country’s electricity mix before the end of the decade after exiting nuclear and ideally phasing out coal power generation.

Dispatchable gas power will cover the remaining 20% of power generation and will be decarbonised through hydrogen or carbon capture solutions.

“Countries like Germany are committed to working on grid digitization and modernization to make grids smarter and well positioned to meet growing demands by adding advanced distribution networks, hybrid systems, energy storage and grid stability power plants,” said Joseph Anis, president & CEO, Europe, Middle East & Africa, GE Gas Power. “GE’s aeroderivative fleet and grid solutions will provide RWE with a reliable energy supply, support Germany’s grid reserve, and help manage the complex grid requirements of tomorrow’s renewables-heavy grid.”

Biblis gas-fired power plant

On 13 November 2020, RWE Generation was awarded the contract to build and operate the 300MW gas-fired grid reserve plant in Biblis by transmission system operators Amprion.

The new plant now provides a stable capacity, although this capacity is not deployed in the market. It can be called upon by Amprion to ensure grid stability in an emergency.

The eleven gas turbine units first fired up in June 2022. After successfully completing a performance test, the plant has been in operation since March 2023 to be ready for use by Amprion.

RWE opted to install 11 gas-fired turbines with a capacity of 34MW each, to boost performance with a high level of redundancy.


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