(Berlin/Prenzlau, 25 October 2011) Today, as a world premiere, the Prime Minister of the State of Brandenburg, Matthias Platzeck, put into operation a hydrogen-hybrid power station in Prenzlau located in the Uckermark district north of Berlin – Management representatives of the partnering com-panies joined the official commissioning: ENERTRAG AG, TOTAL Deutschland GmbH, Vattenfall and Deutsche Bahn.
The aim of this ground-breaking project is to demonstrate the feasibility of a safe and sustainable supply and storage of energy by using a mix of purely renewable energy sources in practical testing. The hydrogen-hybrid power station unites for the first time wind, hydrogen and biogas to one compound. The electricity generated by three wind turbines is proportionately used to manufacture CO2-free hydrogen. This green hydrogen is stored and used to produce electricity and heat by means of a combined hydrogen-biogas power plant at times of high demand and simultaneously low supply of wind en-ergy. Moreover, this hydrogen is also used in the pumps at TOTAL hydrogen filling sta-tions in Berlin and Hamburg. In this way, green hydrogen from the Uckermarck guaran-tees CO2-free mobility in our capital city.
The total sum of investments for this hybrid power station adds up to 21 million euros. This pioneering project is being sponsored by the State of Brandenburg and the Federal Ministry of Transport.
At the event held to celebrate the official opening, Prime Minister Matthias Platzeck said: “The hydrogen-hybrid power station is providing a real boost! This project is an innova-tive, practicable and efficient contribution to be more climate-friendly. This plant, unique in the world, makes it possible to transform the fluctuating wind energy into a reliable fac-tor that can then be deployed in the long-term as a predictable source of energy for elec-tricity, heat and mobility. We are assisting a quantum leap in modern storage technology today."
Werner Diwald, executive board member of ENERTRAG said: “The goal of providing sufficient energy to cover all our electricity, heating and mobility needs solely from re-newable sources is a central facet of the energy revolution and of a sustainable, eco-nomically viable and secure energy supply. The storage of renewable energy will play a significant role here. Hydrogen is unanimously considered to represent the primary me-dium for this job, as it is easily able to transport and store energy in large quantities at the required speed. For this reason, ENERTRAG has chosen to focus on hydrogen and, together with industrial partners, is developing solutions that will enable the supply of energy generated using domestic resources in Germany in accordance with society’s political goals.”
Note to the editors: Informative graphic charts illustrating the way the hydrogen-hybrid power station works and up-to-date pictures may be downloaded free of charge under:
Statements by representatives of the companies involved
Rainer Knauber, Chief Representative of Vattenfall Europe AG for Berlin and the East of Germany:
"The exploitation of wind energy is already today part of Vatenfall’s core business. In Germany, we will continue to expand still further over the coming years. At this point one must also give some thoughts to the question of how to integrate the fluctuating supply of wind-generated electricity into the grids efficiently. The hybrid power station is a very promising approach and we are pleased to contribute with our know-how to this pioneer-ing project."
Hans-Christian Gützkow, Managing Director of TOTAL Deutschland GmbH:
“TOTAL Deutschland has been active in the field of hydrogen for ca. 10 years now. With the aid of this hybrid power plant we bring green hydrogen to our hydrogen filling station, thus creating clean mobility with no CO2-emissions!”
Dr. Hans-Jürgen Witschke, Managing Director DB Energie GmbH:
“By commissioning the hybrid power station we demonstrate that using Deutsche Bahn CO2-free services benefits for our customers twice. The offers bahn.corporate Umwelt-Plus (Environment Plus) and Eco Plus do not only make our customers’ business trips and transports greener. We also sponsor up to ten per cent of these extra revenues to new projects in the field of renewable power generation. Together with our customers we have helped to make this power station possible. We are proud of this, because new technical impulses are needed if we want reaching our climate targets together. This co-operation shows once again that railway traffic is the most environmentally-friendly means of transport, and that we are exploiting all possibilities to further develop in the field of sustainability.”
ENERTRAG generates electricity from wind and other renewable sources. The company plans, finances, builds and operates energy plants. Its unique features are the development of its own technology, a high real net output ratio and the operation of its own feed-in grid for renewable forms of energy.
The company has its headquarters in the Uckermarck region of Brandenburg, close to the city of Prenzlau. With an annual turnover of 250 million euros (ENERTRAG AG) and 440 installed wind-power plants with an annual production of 1.5 thousand million kWh, ENERTRAG’s 400-storng workforce guarantees the annual needs of ca. 1.5 million people in the electricity sector.
About TOTAL’s commitment in the field of hydrogen
TOTAL is one of the leading oil and gas companies worldwide. With more than 1.000 filling sta-tions the company is one of the most important players on the energy market also in Germany. Beyond that, TOTAL is active in the chemistry sector and renewable energy, in particular photo-voltaics.
Germany and Berlin, in particular, represents a pioneering role in the testing of hydrogen (H2) for the traffic sector. For about ten years now, TOTAL has been testing and operating hydrogen fill-ing stations in Berlin. The deployment of renewable energy in order to produce hydrogen played an important role in this right from the beginning. The hydrogen generated in Prenzlau will be used at the TOTAL filling stations in Berlin and Hamburg and supply there the fuel cell vehicles of a number of automobile manufacturers.
In the coming year, at the capital region’s new Berlin-Brandenburg airport, there will be a TOTAL filling station coupled to a wind farm and using renewable energy not only for hydrogen cars but for the entire facility including the electrical charging units. Hydrogen can be converted in vehicles to electricity by means of a fuel cell and thus power electrical vehicles that are larger than battery-operated ones, have a longer range and can be refuelled in just a few minutes. Hydrogen from renewable sources of energy thus paves the way for sustainable environmentally-friendly mobility.
About Vattenfall and Vattenfall Innovation GmbH
Vattenfall today supplies 7.5 million customers in Scandinavia and Central Europe with electricity and heating and also delivers gas to 2 million customers. In the context of its strategic reorienta-tion, Vattenfall intends in the coming years to also significantly improve its carbon footprint. Vat-tenfall has been among the pioneers in the offshore-wind energy sector for a long time and, with regard to the capacity installed, can be counted among the market leaders world-wide.
It is the aim of Vattenfall Innovation GmbH to develop further promising ideas from the fields of energy technology and energy services, thus making them practicably usable. Innovations thus become pilot projects. The main focuses of Vattenfall Innovation GmbH lie in the fields of mobility, energy efficiency and decentralised energy supply. A successful project that Vattenfall Innovation GmbH helped to call into existence is Germany’s first offshore wind farm “alpha ventus”.
About DB Energie
DB Energie GmbH, a subsidiary of Deutsche Bahn AG, is specialised in supplying energy to rail-way companies. Its spectrum of activities encompasses the supply of 16.7-Hz-railway electricity, 50-Hz-electricity and gas, diesel and mineral oil, as well as services connected with energy sup-ply. In the field of electro-mobility, DB Energie is planning and installing a network of charging faculties for Deutsche Bahn and other customers. All services are also being offered to the indus-trial and commercial sectors.
Deutsche Bahn AG has been offering CO2-free business journeys since 2009 – and these are becoming constantly more popular. Compared with the previous year, the number of companies using the “bahn.corporate Umwelt-Plus” service has increased by 60 per cent. In all, ca. 1.6 mil-lion employees of the 100 companies taking part are able to travel CO2-free. In 2011 the custom-ers will, by taking advantage of this offer, be able to improve their environmental balances in the field of passenger traffic by ca. 35,000 tons of CO2 and, in that of goods transported by rail, by 5,400 tons. This is equivalent to the annual electricity consumption of more than 17,000 house-holds. In order to realise CO2-free journeys and transports, the DB will be acquiring in 2011 ca. 235 additional gigawatt hours of green electricity. The entire process is being monitored by the TÜV SÜD.
Issued by: Deutsche Bahn AG