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    Night-time electricity from solar thermal power plants

    Together with the industrial partner Linde AG, researchers from the German Aerospace Center have further developed a latent heat storage system based on nitrate salts. In combination with a cascade of sensible heat storage units, the goal is to maintain the electricity production of solar thermal power plants at night and at times with low solar irradiation. To this end, the scientists have developed a storage system that can also be used for conventional steam power plants and industrial processes.  more...
     
    Projektinfo 10/2017

    German-French geothermal power plant completed

    In the Upper Rhine Graben, natural geological thermal deposits can be tapped at comparatively low depths with bore wells. In a Franco-German research project in Alsace, scientists have been researching the process of utilising heat from crystalline rock for years, whereby they have optimised the concept and technology. At the site of the research facility, two power companies opened a new commercial power plant in 2016. The electricity is fed into the French grid. In Germany, around 95% of geothermal resources are also found in deep rock and 5% in natural thermal water layers.  more...
     

    Pentagonal mirror reflects the sun precisely

    In solar tower power plants, multiple mirrors – called heliostats – direct the sunlight to the receiver at the top of the tower. Heliostats have previously had a rectangular shape. However, engineers have now developed a pentagonal concentrator mirror. They are combining this with a low-cost linear drive and new control software. Five of these heliostats are now being mounted and tested on test platforms at Jülich.
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    “The energy system of today is much more complex than in the past”

    Preparations are currently under way for a new energy research programme, which the German Federal Government intends to publish in the coming legislative period. In preparation, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy has started a discussion process between representatives from industry, science and politics in order to identify relevant fields of research. In this interview Dr Johannes Tambornino, Head of Energy Strategies and System Analysis at Project Management Jülich speaks about the growing importance of system analysis for energy research.  more...
     
    Projektinfo 07/2017

    Flexible turbomachines stabilise the power grid

    In future, conventional power plants will need to become more flexible in order to compensate for the fluctuating power generation by renewables. This requires modified gas and steam turbines. These will have to work more frequently under partial load, with more start-up and shut-down cycles and function with changing fuels. AG Turbo has compiled the research and development objectives for these new framework conditions in the ECOFLEX-turbo programme.  more...
     

    The future of power plants

    The "Flexible Energy Conversion" research network was founded in Berlin at the end of February 2017. Here, researchers and developers from the conventional power plant technology and solar thermal power plant fields will jointly develop future strategies. The goals: To increase the flexibility of large-scale power plants, develop new large-scale storage systems, extensively research the use of hydrogen in power plant processes and in particular optimise the economic efficiency of solar power plants.  more...
     

    The sun shines with the click of a mouse

    Synlight is the name of the world's largest artificial sun, which is situated in Jülich near Aachen. Its bundled light is 10,000 times stronger than the sun. With this energy, researchers want to test solar thermal components in order to produce hydrogen directly – without having to use electrolysis. Last week, the research facility was officially inaugurated.  more...
     

    Solar thermal and photovoltaic power plants in comparison

    How will the market for photovoltaic and solar thermal power plants develop in the coming decades? Which technology is economically more efficient? And what opportunities are offered by combined power plant systems in sunny regions? A study carried out by the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) has investigated the development of these power plants until 2030.  more...
     
    News 18.07.2016

    First liquid salt storage facility with one tank

    High-temperature heat storage tanks ensure that power plants work more flexibly and industrial process heat can be temporarily stored. Researchers at the German Aerospace Center (DLR) have therefore developed a heat storage tank for temperatures up to 560 degrees Celsius, which stores the heat in molten salt. Construction work on the testing facility began at the start of July 2016.  more...
     

    Dry lignite increases flexibility

    Shoulder to shoulder with the energy transition: Coal plants are becoming more flexible to enable more energy from renewable sources to be used to supply the electricity grid. The output from renewable sources is currently not enough to meet the entire energy demand in Germany at all times. But their share is growing. This is transforming the role of conventional power plants: instead of providing constant base loads, they now have to cover fluctuating residual loads. To achieve this, pilot burners with integrated plasma ignition are being used for the first time in the world at a power plant in Jänschwalde in Brandenburg. These are using dry lignite as the fuel.  more...
     

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