Siemens Gamesa will begin installation of the first full scale "Future Energy System - FES" on the Trimet SE aluminum smelter site in Hamburg-Altenwerder this month. Featuring approximately 1,000 tons of rock fill able to provide 30 MWh of electric energy at temperatures of 600 degrees Celsius, the heat can be re-converted into electricity via a steam turbine.
A generator rated at 1.5 MW will produce energy for up to 24 hours. Within this period, the system is expected to have the ability to supply energy equivalent to the consumption of 1,500 average German households.
The Siemens Gamesa energy storage solution provides a way to take excess wind energy and convert it to heat in rock fill. The energy is stored and protected with an insulated cover. When there is a need for additional electricity, a steam turbine converts the heat energy back to electricity.
The simple principle of this storage combines proven components in an innovative setup: For the conversion process of electricity into a hot air stream, it uses mass-produced fans and heating elements. The same applies to the re-conversion: Via a Siemens steam boiler, a standard steam turbine is operated to generate electricity at the end of the process chain.
Siemens Gamesa is expecting a construction time of approximately one year for the new FES system. The works in Hamburg-Altenwerder will start this month with commissioning planned spring 2019. After comprehensive testing, the new storage system will then be operated in collaboration with Hamburg Energie GmbH.