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Flexibility Potentials of Energy-Intensive Industries for Providing Power Grid Services

Flexibility Potentials of Energy-Intensive Industries for Providing Power Grid Services

The energy system in Germany undergoes a major transition: large centralized power plants are replaced by decentralized intermittent renewable energy sources. Due to the uncontrolled fluctuations of wind and solar power, new balancing mechanisms and potentials have to be integrated into the electricity grid. Industry sectors like metallurgy, cement, or chemicals are both resource-, and energy-intensive. Shifting energy demand and adapting processes of these sectors can significantly contribute to the transformation of the electricity grid.

The aim of this project is to determine the flexibility potential of the copper industry and the necessary incentives to activate this potential. In other words: How much stabilizing power can the copper industry offer to the electricity grid and how much would it cost? Thus, the project provides an in-depth analysis of the copper industry as an active part of a decentralized renewable energy system.

Flexibility of the energy demand in the copper industry can be realized by adapting control of existing processes to utilize existing flexibilities or by adapting the process scheme to add new flexibilities. To capture the details of the corresponding processes, dynamic in-depth models are developed of components, such as an electric furnace. The models enable us to investigate a dynamic process operation that reacts swiftly to changes like the power tariffs in the electricity market. The detailed analysis with dynamic models is also necessary to understand the limits of flexibility of the energy demand in the processes and to identify new flexibility options.

Contact person: Fritz Röben