Study compares economic and technical options

Modelling renewable electricity supplies

The German federal government wants at least 80 per cent of the electricity production to be generated by renewables by 2050. Scientists at the Öko-Institut are therefore investigating how the growing proportion of renewable energies can be optimally integrated into the energy system using storage systems combined with grid and load management. The newly published BINE-Projektinfo brochure entitled “Modelling power supply for 2050” (02/2016) presents possible basic structures for generating and distributing electricity for the years 2020, 2030 and 2050.

In order to balance out the volatile supply of renewable energy, the consumption also needs to be flexibly organised in both temporal and spatial terms. Thermal power plants, storage systems and smart load management provide corresponding possibilities in this regard. Experts from the Öko-Institut have investigated which options are already available and where there is still need for development.
For this purpose they have developed an electricity market model that incorporates both technical and economic factors. This makes it possible, for example, to depict various energy sources in the future system. Using the model, the experts can estimate the economic feasibility of individual variants. Heat storage systems for CHP plants make economic sense, for example, since low specific investments are needed. Load management for industry, commerce, retail and services provide further possibilities.

The scientists produced generation and consumption scenarios for the years 2020, 2030 and 2050. Among other things, the study showed that the variable electricity generation costs will fall in 2020 through the use of load management, heat and pumped storage systems.


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(4 pages, pdf, 805 kB)

Downloadable pictures

Note: All downloadable pictures may only be used for coverage relating to this research project.

Das BINE-Projektinfo „Stromversorgung für 2050 modellieren“ (02/2016)

(300 dpi, tiff, 2,2 MB)

Abbildung 1: Laut der europäischen Übertragungsnetzbetreiber (TYNDP) reicht bereits eine moderate Netzerweiterung, um die Abregelungsquote bis 2020 unter 5% zu halten. (© BINE Informationsdienst, Gerhard Hirn).

Figure 1
According to the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity already a moderate network expansion is sufficient to keep the curtailment rate below 5% until 2020. (© BINE Informationsdienst, Gerhard Hirn).

Abbildung 2: Speicher schaffen Flexibilität: Hier zu sehen der Energiepark Geesthacht mit Pumpspeicherkraftwerk (drei Turbinen mit jeweils 40 MW) und 60 kWp Solarpark. (© Wikimedia / IqRS (CC-BY-SA-3.0)).

Figure 2
Storage systems provide flexibility: the energy park Geesthacht Pumped-storage Power Plant (three turbines of 40 MW) and a 60 kWp solar park are shown here. (© Wikimedia / IqRS (CC-BY-SA-3.0)).