Munich, April 25, 2017: Renewable energies are taking the world by storm. As a result, decentralized energy generation and above all the smart integration and management of renewable sources of energy are becoming increasingly important. Intersolar Europe is taking up this topic at the Smart Renewable Energy special exhibit and collaborating with three Helmholtz Association centers to demonstrate what the energy supply of the future could look like. Intersolar Europe, the world’s leading exhibition for the solar industry and its partners, will be held from May 31–June 2, 2017 in Munich.
The success of renewable energy continues uninterrupted around the world. According to a new report published by the McKinsey Global Institute, the global share of energy from renewable sources could grow from the current 4 percent to 36 percent by 2035. A substantial amount of this will be contributed by solar energy. According to the figures recently published by SolarPower Europe, 76 gigawatts (GW) of solar energy were installed in 2016 – compared to just 50 GW in 2015. China and USA in particular led the surge last year, with both countries almost doubling their solar expansion.
The consequence of the rapid development worldwide: The share of renewable energy in the power grid is constantly increasing. In light of this, the question of how renewable energy can be effectively integrated into power grids and energy systems is becoming ever more important – because supply safety must be guaranteed in the new energy world. Renewable energies do not supply the same amount of power at all times of day or year, so the global energy transition needs a modern, smart infrastructure and innovative storage options to ensure that the necessary quantities of power, heat and fuels are available at all times. Intersolar Europe is exploring this topic at the Smart Renewable Energy special exhibit (hall B2, booth B2.140).
Intelligently connected – Researchers test the energy networks of the future
The Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and its project partners from the Helmholtz Association – the German Aerospace Center (DLR) and the Forschungszentrum Jülich (FZJ) – will present how new methods and technologies can shape the energy system of the future. Their new infrastructure platform Energy Lab 2.0, funded by the German government and the Federal State of Baden-Württemberg, investigates the complex interplay of components in the energy systems of the future. As a “real-life laboratory” and simulation platform, Energy Lab 2.0 tests new approaches to integrating diverse technologies into the energy system. Among the topics the researchers are exploring is how different storage technologies are best connected to electricity generation and consumption. This is linked to the question of what sort of an information and data network is required to facilitate this. For the first time in Europe, larger test facilities for generating renewable electrical energy, for storing and converting energy to gas, fuels and heat as well as for reconverting chemical energy sources back into electricity are being combined with each other in a facility network.
The core of the Energy Lab 2.0 is the Smart Energy System Simulation and Control Center, where the all data from the facility network come together, and are analyzed, stored and used for simulations. “The changes in the energy world require a new grid architecture and IT-based approaches in order to intelligently connect and control the different players. Extensive research in the Energy Lab 2.0 will be devoted to this issue over the coming years. Intersolar Europe is a great opportunity for us to present the project to trade visitors and to provide inspiration for how the framework conditions might be designed,” says Professor Dr.-Ing. Roland Dittmeyer from the Institute for Micro Process Engineering at the KIT.
Expert discussions at the Smart Renewable Energy Forum
The experts behind the Energy Lab 2.0 will be introducing the project and other groundbreaking research initiatives for realizing the energy transition on June 1, 2017 in the Smart Renewable Energy Forum, directly opposite the special exhibit. This will be followed by a question and answer session with industry professionals. On all three days of the exhibition, pressing issues for the new energy world will be tackled at the forum and discussed by experts from a broad range of disciplines.
Image source: © Markus Breig / Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)