The Ecofactorij is a business park with a collective grid connection of 20MVA. Twenty companies are connected with each other through a so-called private grid. We started doing peak shaving at this location in 2012. We regulate the process of the big companies to control the maximum load on the collective grid connection. Besides peak shaving, by which the electrical grid is optimally exploited, there are a couple companies participating in the imbalance market and the emergency power market. Because the whole grid is made intelligent, everything is measured and the processes are controllable. Therefore we can regulate the currents in the grid.
One of the companies, VDL Weweler (www.vdlweweler.nl), that’s making shock absorbers for DAF-trucks, has two salt basins of 450 degrees from which the temperature is variable by +/- 10 degrees. So this is the equivalent of a battery. Heating the salt basins is the same as charging a battery: you’re taking power from the grid. Stopping to heat the salt basins is the same as discharging a battery. The two salt basins are like a battery of 1,5MVA with a capacity of 1,5MVAh. Weweler (=self-interest) as well as Ecofactorij (= common-interest), earning money by smart charging/discharging of the salt basins related to the electricity market. Because of technical issues and law/contract issues with the smart grid of the Ecofactorij, we have gathered a lot of experience and knowledge in our 8 years of existence.
Windnet (www.windnet.nl) exists since 2005 and was ahead of its time with a private grid in the Flevopolder, to which is connected 80MVA of wind power. In 2020/2021, Windnet will expand a lot, 120MVA of solar power and 36MVA of batteries. This means a total amount of 236MVA of producers and only a grid connection of 140MVA. There is even room for an extra 54MVA of wind power.
How is this possible? Wind and sun in the Netherlands seldom produce their maximum amount of power at the same moment. When it happens, the smart grid intervenes and determines the most economical solution at that moment. To illustrate, think about charging the batteries or reducing the production of the wind farms or solar plants. All the experiences and knowledge of the Ecofactorij shall be used in an improved version within Windnet.
We expect the first batteries to be operational around September 2020. There will be 120MVA of solar power around June 2021.
Solarfields: 120 MVA of solar panels
Solarfields (www.solarfields.nl) is a well-established developer of big solar plants. On the electrical grid of Windnet, the solar plants from Solarfields will become smart. Because of this they will be able to do peak shaving, join the emergency power market, the imbalance market and the reserve and control market. We will do everything to be prepared for the new era of transport of electricity.
Gigastore begins with 12MVA and later it will be 36MVA of batteries
These are the first big steps in the energy transition, a battery of 12MVA will be operational in September 2020, see www.giga-storage.com/project-giga-rhino/.
The battery will operate on the FCR-market (see /electricity-market/ancillary-services/fcr-documents/) but will also be used for many other purposes like peak shaving and loading electricity from solar and wind. The battery of Giga-Rhino is an important link in the Smart Grid of Windnet.
WUR Mammoettocht and the Neushoorntocht, in total 46MVA of wind power
The two wind farms Mammoethtocht and Neushoorntocht have been operational since 2006. In the last few years, the wind farms have entered the imbalance market, the emergency power market and will soon enter the reserve and control market. Within Windnet, the Mammoethtocht and the Neushoorntocht are an important link because the parks are used as fast regulating wind power. Within a few seconds, the two parks can reduce the power from 46MVA to 3MVA.
FLP Netwerken bv
Just outside Schiphol, there is a private grid with a capacity of 20MVA that is connected to the public grid (www.flpnetwerken.nl). This grid is ready to be smart. FLP Netwerken is built like the Ecofactorij and in the nearby future, within the private grid, a large amount of MVA’s will be produced. The grid is prepared to use all the gained knowledge of the Ecofactorij. All the energy flows are already monitored; this can be seen on the above mentioned website.