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The Magazine for Research and Innovation | Special Edition: Green Technologies
Tomorrow’s Power Grids
How Vehicles, Cities and Alternative Energy Sources will Interact
Squeezing Better Results out of Today’s Technologies
Solutions for a Sustainable, Low-Carbon Future
Pictures of the Future | Editorial
n recent weeks there have been signs that the world may have left the worst of the financial and economic crisis behind — and already some people are playing down the causes of the worst crisis in 80 years. However, we shouldn't ignore a simple fact: activities aimed exclusively at shortterm gains don't create long-term value! This is particularly true when it comes to climate change. Current efforts to limit warming are based on the expectation that the global community will set course toward a sustainable future. The aim is to improve the balance between environmental, economic and social interests. One of the most significant factors affecting the achievement of this goal is how vehicles at night, when electricity is cheaper, and sell it during the day at peak prices. Electric vehicles will also have an important stabilizing function. Just a few hundred thousand electric vehicles connected to the power grid would provide more “balancing power” than Germany currently needs to cover its demand peaks. The most reliable, cheapest, and most environmentally-friendly source of energy is reduced consumption. That’s why there’s a huge need for energy-efficient technologies (p. 66-125). Experts expect worldwide demand for such technologies to grow by 13 percent annually in the coming decade. A large part of our product range is aimed at this future market, which could be worth more than €2 trillion by 2020. We provide the most energy-efficient and high-performance power plant turbines. We help our customers to reduce energy consumption in their buildings by as much as 40 percent. We've developed industrial drive systems that save up to 75 percent of electricity, thus recouping their purchase price within 18 months. That’s the positive side effect of energy-efficient technologies. Because the customers' energy costs are reduced, their competitiveness increases. The importance of renewable energy sources will grow considerably in the next 20 years (p. 12-33). According to calculations made by the International Energy Agency and Siemens, in 2030 we will be harvesting about 13 times more energy from wind and 140 times more solar energy than we do today. In just six hours, the world’s deserts receive as much energy from the sun as the world's entire population consumes in a year. Our goal must be to capture as much of this energy as possible and to transport it with as few losses as possible to the places where it is needed. To help achieve this goal, we have made acquisitions to enhance our leadership in the area of solar thermal technology. Today, Siemens is the only company that can offer all of the core technologies for harvesting and transmitting solar energy from a single source. This underscores our claim to be the leading technology partner in the Desertec project. Here, the aim is to improve the energy supply in North Africa while covering 15 to 20 percent of Europe's energy needs from wind and solar power plants in the Mediterranean region by the middle of this century. We will do our share to ensure that this “Apollo project of the 21st century” becomes a reality.
Pictures of the Future
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The Road Toward a Sustainable Future
Peter Löscher is President and CEO of Siemens AG.
12 14 20 23 24 27 28 29 Scenario 2030 The Electric Caravan Solar Energy – Desertec Power from the Deserts Offshore Wind High-Altitude Harvest Floating Wind Farms Tapping an Ocean of Wind Wind Turbines Recipe for Rotor Blades Facts and Forecasts Why Renewable Energy is Needed Renewable Resources Energy for Developing Countries Interview Prof. Oberheitmann Why China Wants to Conserve Energy Interview with Prof. Wan Gang China’s Minister of Science Biomass Flaming Scrap 38 40 44 48 50
Scenario 2020 New World Trends: Tomorrow’s Power Grids Switching on the Vision HVDC Transmission China’s River of Power Energy Storage Trapping the Wind Interview with Dan Arvizu Director of the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory Intelligent Buildings Plugging Buildings into the Grid Smart Meters Transparent Network Virtual Power Plants Power in Numbers Facts and Forecasts Growing Demand for Smart Grids Electromobility From Wind to Wheels
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Cover: Siemens recently completed construction of the world’s largest offshore wind farm 30 km from the Danish coast. Outfitted with 91 turbines, Horns Rev II will pump 210 MW of electrical power into Denmark’s grid — enough to supply over 136,000 households. Advanced sensing will minimize maintenance.
we deal with energy. Because of population growth and increasing prosperity, our global energy needs are expected to grow by 60 percent by 2030. During the same period, we must dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions. To “square the circle,” we need to act quickly and comprehensively at two levels: We have to generate, distribute and use energy more efficiently. And we must expand the proportion of power generated from renewable energy sources. On both of these levels, no other company can compete with Siemens. The value of our certified environmental portfolio rose from €19 billion in business year 2008 to €23 billion in 2009. In this special issue of Pictures of the Future we've assembled examples from this “green” portfolio. One key topic involves the intelligent electrical networks of the future — socalled “smart grids” (p. 38-63). These will enable us to tap and feed in energy at any point in the network. They thus represent a vital step on the road to a future system of power generation that will be much more diversified and decentralized. Smart grids will also open the door to a society based on zero-emission electric vehicles (p. 60). These vehicles will be more than just a means of transportation. They will be smart, mobile energy storage units that will even generate income for their owners, who will be able to recharge their
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4 Interviews and Facts Dr. Steven Chu Prof. Hans Joachim Schellnhuber The Sources of Greenhouse Gases 8 Siemens Environmental Portfolio Climate Change is Powering Growth 134 Crisis and Climate Protection Engines of Tomorrow’s Growth 164 Venture Capital: Green Dwarfs 126 Environmental City Studies London: Shrinking Footprints Munich: A CO2-Free City
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Scenario 2025 Energy-Saving Sleuth Urban Energy Analysis Cities: A Better Energy Picture Trends: Energy for Everyone Light at the End of the Tunnel World’s Largest Gas Turbine Unmatched Efficiency Coal-Fired Power in China Olympic Efficiencies Steam Turbine Materials Preparing for a Fiery Future CO2 Separation Coal’s Cleaner Outlook CO2 Sequestration Testing Eternal Incarceration Power Plant Upgrades New Life for Old Plants Steel Plants Efficiency Catches Fire Mining Electrification Monster Drives Airports Flight from Carbon Dioxide Facts and Forecasts More Efficient Buildings Energy Efficient Buildings Nature is their Model Intelligent Sensors When Buildings Come to Life Lamp Life Cycles Let there be Savings UN Emission Certificates India’s new Light Interview: Rajendra K. Pachauri Nobel Prize Winner & IPCC Chairman Off-Grid Solutions New Sources of Hope Efficient Appliances Miracle in the Laundry Room Facts and Forecasts The Energy-Efficiency Pay Off Self-Sufficient Alpine Hut Forecasts that Come Home Combined Heat and Power How to Own a Power Plant Energy Storage Piggybanks for Power Rail Transport High-Speed Success Story Rail System Life Cycles Timely Trains Vienna A Model of Mobility
Pictures of the Future Special Edition on Green Technologies | Fall 2009
Pictures of the Future Special Edition on Green Technologies | Fall 2009
Interview | Hans Joachim Schellnhuber
In his report, British economist Sir Nicholas Stern warns that the world economy is in danger. Stern says the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere must be kept below 550 parts per million (ppm) if global warming is to be limited to a maximum of two to three degrees Celsius. Do you agree? Schellnhuber: Two to three degrees — that doesn’t sound like much, but it is. The temperature rise between the last ice age and the current temperate period was only five degrees, yet what a difference those five degrees have made for the world! But let me spell out in detail what the Stern Report says. Even if we
marine life would also have to adapt. Second, the atmosphere would be more heavily laden with water vapor and energy, resulting in increasingly violent storms. Third, the variation in precipitation patterns would become more extreme, meaning even less rain in places where there is already little rainfall, and vice versa. Just one consequence of this would be increasing desertification. And fourth, because of the greater temperature difference between land and sea, Europe would face the prospect of a monsoon effect. How much would it cost to meet the two-degree target? Schellnhuber: According to Stern, we would have to invest around one percent of world GDP in order to limit global warming to between two and three degrees. His report relies heavily on model calculations produced by our institute as part of an international comparative project. We adopted new methods of economic analysis, because earlier studies on the costs of protecting the atmosphere, mainly originating in the U.S., were based on false premises. They barely took account of technological advances in the use of environmentally friendly energy sources and therefore came to an unrealistically high figure. According to our results, even the cost of sticking to the two-degree limit is less than one percent of global economic output. Stern has factored in a safety margin, making his calculation more pessimistic than ours. And what would be the costs of doing nothing at all? Schellnhuber: At least ten times higher than the costs of protecting the atmosphere, that is to say somewhere between ten and 20 percent of world GDP. What concrete measures can we take? Schellnhuber: Essentially, the world’s energy system needs to be put on a new, low-carbon diet. That means, first of all, conserving energy and using it more efficiently, and, secondly, greatly increasing our use of renewable sources — including wind and solar power, and geothermal energy and biomass. By far the most cost-effective method here is simply to use less energy. The British town of Woking, for example, has reduced its CO2 emissions by almost 80 percent over the last ten years, saving a lot of money in the process. There’s tremendous potential here. For instance, thermal insulation for buildings, low-energy lights, low-consumption vehicles, and lots more. Developing renewable energy sources is, by comparison, more expensive, but it is imperative in the long term.
Why Carbon Dioxide Emissions Need to be Cut in Half by 2050
Prof. Hans Joachim Schellnhuber is Director of the Institute for Climate Impact Research in Potsdam. Schellnhuber, 59, was one of the first researchers to investigate the consequences of climate change. The physicist was also Research Director at the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change in Norwich (UK) from 2001 to 2005. The exceptional value of his work was officially recognized when the Queen named him “Honorary Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire” (CBE). German Chancellor Angela Merkel appointed Schellnhuber to serve as Advisor on Climate Issues to the Federal Government in 2007. Interview conducted in Spring, 2007.
meet the 550 ppm target, we will still face a 90-percent probability of global warming of more than two degrees. That’s pretty alarming. I would tighten Stern’s demand and stipulate an upper limit of 450 ppm. That way, there’s a 50-percent probability that global warming will be limited to two degrees, although a 5050 chance is not particularly reassuring either. Basically, to be sure of meeting the two-degree limit, we would have to cut emissions to below 400 ppm in the long term. Why two degrees? Is that, so to speak, the point of no return if we are to get a handle on global warming? Schellnhuber: It’s not a hard and fast line, but once we cross it, the damage becomes rapidly uncontrollable. The temperature of the planet would increase to a greater degree than at any other time during the last 20 million years — all within just one century. That would be a real roller-coaster ride for the earth, an unprecedented phenomenon. Would global warming that significantly exceeded two degrees really have a dramatic impact? Schellnhuber: Yes, it would. For a start, the sea ice in the Arctic and the ice on Greenland would melt completely, and the ice in the Antarctic would melt in part. In the long term, sea levels would rise enormously as a result. We’d have to evacuate practically all coastal areas; human civilization as we know it would have to be reinvented. What’s more, because of the direct CO2 transfer from the atmosphere, the oceans would become more acidic, and
Are greater efficiency and renewable energy enough? Schellnhuber: Not on their own. In particular, we’re going to have to use carbon sequestration. That means whenever carbon is combusted, the CO2 must be captured rather than being emitted into the atmosphere. This is most effective in biomass power plants — that way, the net amount of carbon in the atmosphere is reduced. In addition, the operating life of existing nuclear power plants could be extended, since their associated dangers are low compared to those of global warming. On the other hand, their contribution to generating capacity cannot be boosted substantially without ramping up the industry to reprocess spent plutonium — or building thousands of new nuclear power plants. In my opinion, however, the gains from extending the operating life of nuclear facilities should be channeled into developing alternative energy sources. Do you think the industry will cooperate in this reorientation of the world’s energy system? Schellnhuber: Yes, if conditions are right. Governments must establish guidelines and set targets. I think it’s sensible for each country to draw up its own roadmap, and then to combine these into a kind of world road atlas. There’s no escaping the fact that we need to halve global CO2 emissions by 2050, compared to 1990 levels. And industrial countries should really be reducing carbon emissions by 60 to 80 percent, because they’ve produced much more CO2 than developing countries. How effective is emissions trading? Schellnhuber: The concept calls for trade in emissions allowances, whereby the state deliberately ensures a stringent market. That’s fine, in principle, but it can’t remain an isolated measure. Important, too, is greater use of innovative technology, although it pays to remember that the biggest gains are always a result of reducing energy waste. London alone produces as much CO2 as all of Portugal. Yet its increasing energy demand can be completely attributed to the increasing use of appliances that consume power when in standby mode. That can be changed, as every engineer knows. What’s the short term roadmap? Schellnhuber: 2007 and 2008 are decisive years, because the pressure will be on to develop a successor agreement to Kyoto. Then, over the next five to ten years, important decisions are going to have to be made regarding the modernization of a lot of power plants.
What can a global company like Siemens do about the climate challenge? Schellnhuber: German companies have the strengths needed to cope with climate change. Don’t forget, people used to poke fun at Germans because of our concern for the environment. But our industry can help launch a new industrial revolution — and even post good earnings in the process — which will one day lead to a zero-emissions society. Invest now, and you’ll later have the advantage of being able to supply your technology to the major markets of the future, such as China and India. Where does the U.S. fit into this equation? And do you think it will start to control its greenhouse emissions before it’s too late? Schellnhuber: Countries like India and China, which are consuming increasing amounts of energy, will continue to point the finger at the U.S. as long as it fails to cut emissions. But I
think there’s a good chance that policy in Washington will change. The U.S. probably won’t sign up to the Kyoto Protocol, but it could end up setting similar targets. The U.S. might change as Europe has. Here, many people didn’t want to recognize warming. They thought there would be another 50 years to go before the train would derail. But today I sense a growing interest among people. Has the Stern Report brought about a real sea change in opinion? Schellnhuber: Years of warnings from scientists have weakened those who argued that global warming was a fantasy. Now Stern has managed to tear down the last remaining walls of resistance by taking the facts and calculating their economic impact. His arguments will carry a lot of weight, because when it comes to politics, economic arguments count. Interview conducted by Jeanne Rubner
The Cost of Climate Change
According to former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, the 650-page Stern Report, which was submitted on October 30 of last year, was the most important document produced during his entire time in office. The author, Sir Nicholas Stern, was a government advisor to Blair. Blair himself has defined climate change as a key political challenge. Indeed, the World Economic Forum in Davos at the end of January of this year supported Blair’s point of view, revealing a real consensus, particularly among participants from leading industrial nations, that action on climate change is urgently needed. According to Stern, a former Chief Economist at the World Bank, if the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere isn’t kept below 550 parts per million (ppm), there will be grave consequences for the world economy. By way of comparison, the level of greenhouse gases at the beginning of the Industrial Revolution was 280 ppm, while today’s figure is 430 ppm — and currently rising by 2.3 ppm a year. If we succeed in limiting greenhouse gases to 550 ppm, there will be global warming of between two and three
Source: Stern Report. Based on: Schellnhuber et al., Cambridge
Global emissions (in billion tons of CO2 equivalents per year) 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 2000 2020 2040 2060 2080 2100 Greenhouse gas emissions peaking –––– in 2015, followed by a reduction of 1.0% p.a. –––– in 2020, followed by a reduction of 2.5% p.a. –––– in 2030, followed by a reduction of 4.0% p.a. –––– in 2040, followed by a reduction of 4.5% p.a.
degrees Celsius, the maximum increase that climate researchers still consider endurable. This goal can be achieved only if the current rise in emissions of C02 and other greenhouse gases is halted by 2020, and thereafter reduced by around two percent per year. That will cost money — one percent of world GDP per year, according to Stern’s estimate. Yet inaction would be much more expensive. A temperature increase of five degrees Celsius could end up costing as much as one fifth of world GDP per year.
Strategies for stabilizing greenhouse gases at a level of 550 ppm. The longer the delay before such measures are introduced, the greater the rise in emissions until that point — and the more radically emissions will have to fall annually. The goal by 2050 is a 25percent reduction from the current level — with a world economy that will be three or four times larger than today’s (i.e., they will have to fall by 75 percent per unit of GDP).
Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2007
Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2007
S.g. which give off small amounts (around 25 g/kWh) of CO2 from uranium mining and enrichment. sulfur hexafluoride) — are converted into these equivalents to show their global warming potential A bout one third of the approximately 44. president makes energy and climate change an initiative the way Kennedy made it an initiative to reach the moon. and it needs to be implemented without loopholes. the owner must provide a statement from utility companies certifying gas and electricity usage for the last 12 months. four degrees. In Germany. But we don’t know what temperature. fluorocarbons and industrial gases (e. etc. According to the IEA. There will be increased species extinction. There are also artificial photosynthetic systems that allow you to take electricity or sunlight and make a chemical fuel. California. But China’s emissions are still low. air conditioners. India (4. for example. Reference value: energy-related CO2 emissions Are we on the edge of a climate crisis? Chu: Climate change is a real threat to our long-term future. The utility companies already have records of electricity and gas use on every home. Photovoltaic facilities account for about 100 g/kWh of CO2. a small share is also generated during the facilities’ construction and by the supply of fuels. The issue is. This would also help home owners and builders to do a better initial job of making new homes energy efficient because they would appear more attractive to prospective buyers. from power plants and vehicle emissions) Industrial gases: fluorocarbons (e.000 grams per kilowatt-hour (g/kWh) of electricity. And six degrees on the plus side would also be a very different world. Germanwatch — Klimaschutzindex 2009.8 in Europe and 19 tons in the U. you will find heat. energy-related emissions will rise by almost 50 percent to about 40 billion tons of CO2 by 2030 if countermeasures aren’t taken. Russia (nearly 6 percent). Interview conducted by Arthur F. six degrees Celsius and so on? A six degree reduction in average global temperature is the difference between what we have today and what was experienced during the Ice Age. more. by 2020. seen on a per capita basis: about five tons of CO2 per year. So you can think about heat pumps that will cool you in the summer and warm you in the winter. And there are other things that we can’t really measure at this point. this would go a long way to solving these problems. This can be a cap and trade system.Interview | Steven Chu | Facts and Forecasts Top 10 CO2 Emitters 0% 5% 10% 15% 20% world as greenhouse gases comes from agriculture. from cattle) N2O: nitrous oxide (laughing gas. The reason for this is that anywhere you go.g. we should mandate efficiencies in things like computers and consumer appliances. Hence. If these things happen. artificial photosynthesis will supply the world’s transportation fuel needs. forestry. Steven Chu. and is computed by multiplying per capita emissions and population. Bangladesh would be half underwater. Wind plants (20 g/kWh) and hydroelectric facilities (4 g/kWh). But it has to be a very clear signal. In the long term. I think photovoltaics. Berkeley. put in more insulation. solar thermal and biofuels are also getting a new look. Before his appointment he was director of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in Berkeley. by contrast.g. are about 1. laughing gas.3 percent). followed by Europe (14. China is expected to produce twice as much CO2 as the U. from refrigeration systems). used as an insulator gas) Non-energy use 3% Buildings 13% Other energy sector 5% Power generation 42% 26. Parts of Antarctica would melt. Transport 20% Industry 17% Source: IEA World Energy Outlook 2008 CH4 12% N2O 6% Industrial gases 1% CO2 81% pared to roughly 7. with one ton of methane corresponding to 21 tons of 25 Energy-related CO2 emissions per capita and year (in tons) Canada Regional Distribution of EnergyRelated Carbon Dioxide Emissions The size of each circle corresponds to the total emissions of the region in question.g. the glacial watershed storage systems that our economies are based on will be threatened. When they come back to life they will release methane and CO2 in such quantities that it will dwarf the amount of greenhouse gases that humans are putting out now. This is actually a biological question because there are bacteria in the tundra that will become active at a certain temperature. and fuel combustion by transport vehicles. So why not provide The Sources of Greenhouse Gases U. Other greenhouse gases — including methane. 2008. The glaciers on Greenland would have a good chance of melting away. hard coal plants produce 780 g/kWh. we should require that before a house can be sold or even rented. due to the production of solar cells. This is a technology we are going to have to master. Guess what this would do? It would encourage homeowners at least one year before deciding to sell or rent out their property to seal major leaks. and China (about 20 percent each). modules and inverters. is 21 times that of CO2. sulfur hexafluoride (e. including agriculture and the chemicals industry. A look at the regional distribution of energy-related emissions shows the biggest shares are from the U.S. What can we do to avert global warming? Chu: I think the single most important thing we can do is to put a price on carbon.g.S.5 percent). in the foreseeable future. While at Stanford University his work led to the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1997. is the 12th United States Secretary of Energy.5 percent) and Japan (4. generation of heat. and possibly install more energy-efficient heaters. This would this information to homeowners as a feedback mechanism? What technologies offer the greatest hope for a sustainable energy future? Chu: I think we should take a fresh look at geothermal from the local level with the use of better designed heat pumps. For instance. Sylvia Trage 6 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2007 7 Source: IEA. More than two-thirds of the greenhouse gas emissions (currently about 28 billion tons of CO2e) are energy-related. Pease compared to carbon dioxide (CO2). while the remaining 13 percent come from other sources. Power generation is the source of nearly 40 percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. 61.2 billion tons of CO2e that are emitted annually around the CO2e. but also at the utility-generation level where you can enhance its effect by introducing a heat transfer fluid such as water or CO2. about 87 percent of greenhouse gases result from energy use. it will be a while before we get trains and trucks that work on the same principle. meaning they are caused by people’s energy consumption. Methane’s global warming potential. The emissions result from electricity generation in power plants. As the world’s largest coal consumer. Second. for example. What other steps should be taken? Chu: First of all. e.9 billion tons of CO2 per year Interview conducted in Spring. One Fifth Are Not From Carbon Dioxide CH4: methane (e. The cumulative CO2 emissions of lignite power plants. And the atmosphere even feels the effect of nuclear power plants. sea levels would increase by seven to ten meters. The earth is cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. What’s allow buyers and renters to compare energy requirements for different buildings. The largest Japan India Germany Prescriptions for a Threatened Planet Dr. com- 5 0 Energy-Related CO2 Emissions by Key Sectors Major Sources of Greenhouse Gases.S. Even if you only go down a few meters you get very stable temperatures. UK Share … of total world CO2 emissions 20 2006 15 Source: IEA World Energy Outlook 2008 North America Italy of total world primary energy consumption of total world gross domestic product 2030 10 South Korea of total world population Europe 2006 2030 Africa / Middle 2030 East 2000 3000 Asia 2030 South America 2006 0 2030 2006 1000 2006 4000 Population (in millions) share of CO2 from power plants results from turning fossil fuels into usable energy such as electricity and district heating. we will need a high energy-density transportation fuel that can be provided by an artificial photosynthetic system that requires far less water than fuels based on growing plants or algae. what will happen if temperatures go up two degrees. have very low CO2 emissions. If the next U. a tax or whatever. He was also Professor of Physics and of Molecular and Cell Biology at UC. land clearing measures and waste. While we will soon develop batteries to power plug-in hybrids and all-electric vehicles.S. “CO2e” refers to CO2 equivalents. we don’t know what the tipping point is for the release of the CO2 that is locked in the tundra of Siberia and Canada. China Russia . if you dig deep enough. What would this cost? Almost nothing.
The list accounts for more than 25 percent of the company’s sales. as well as energy-efficient products ranging from lighting systems and drive units to building tech- J nology and solutions for environmentally-friendly production processes.000-megawatt class.000 tons. Other ecological power transmission and distribution systems from Siemens include power grid links for offshore wind parks. According to a study conducted by British economist Sir Nicholas Stern. Halogen Energy Savers. gas-insulated transformers. would require an estimated investment of only around one percent of GWP a year. For many years. and high-intensity discharge lamps. Independent auditing company PricewaterhouseCoopers regularly confirms the validity of the Siemens Environmental Portfolio and the savings it has generated. ecology. Like energy-saving lamps. Mass Transit: Cutting Energy Bills by 30% The transportation sector accounts for 25 to 30 percent of global end-consumer energy consumption. and in 2009 amounted to €23 billion — much more than any competitor. In 2008 a company-wide team led by Siemens Corporate Technology for the first time documented the company’s complete Environmental Portfolio. This figure consists of all emissions generated by energy consumption for electricity and heat. heat and power co-generation. Limiting the rise of average global temperature to under two degrees. The corresponding average figures for coal-fired plants worldwide are 30 percent peak efficiency and 1. They also last up to 15 times longer. for example. In the summer of 2008.115 g CO2/kWh. airport navigation lighting.000 megawatts of environmentally friendly electricity from hydropower plants over a distance of 1. direct greenhouse gas emissions and emissions produced Power Transmission: 5. The Transformational Data Center has enabled Siemens-operated server farms to increase their capacity utilization to more than 80 percent. and flexibility by addressing all aspects of a server farm. as well as the method Siemens used to calculate the savings. And mobility is going to substantially increase in the future. Server Farms: Achieving 80% Utilization Rapidly growing data volumes and ever-more powerful computers are pushing up energy consumption and putting a strain on the environment.400 kilometers at 800 kilovolts. Siemens has been a leader in environmentallyfriendly power generation and distribution. It also includes systems for active energy management and computer center automation. Experts have calculated that computer servers around the world require the complete output of 14 power plants in the 1. ust about everyone today agrees that climate change is threatening both the environment and the global economy. LEDs consume up to 80 percent less electricity than light bulbs. which is more than 40 times the level of CO2 that Siemens itself produces. which lists all products and solutions that help protect the environment and battle climate change.000 hours. The consistent lightweight design of subway trains in Oslo has reduced energy consumption by 30 percent. this HVDC line will begin transmitting 5. and power plant control technology. It’s clearly time for the world to act. Such plants have a peak efficiency of more than 58 percent.and climate-friendly conventional power plants are combined cycle gas and steam facilities that use natural gas. Light-Emitting Diodes: Saving up to 900 Billion Kilowatt Hours The use of efficient lighting technology could reduce global electricity consumption by more than 900 billion kilowatt-hours per year. Energy-saving lamps from Osram boast a high level of luminous efficiency and use up to 80 percent less electricity than light bulbs. implementation of effective measures to combat climate change would cost much less.Pictures of the Future | Environmental Portfolio Why Climate Change Is Powering Growth Siemens’ leadership in products and solutions designed to protect the environment and the climate is worth a bundle. which eliminates the need for diesel generators on docked ships. from planning and construction to operation and outsourcing. Based on the current worldwide electricity mix. Combined Cycle Power Plants: Achieving 58% Efficiency The most environmentally. and rail traffic automation and power supply systems. On the other hand. In fiscal year 2009 the company posted sales of €23 billion in this area and helped its customers reduce their carbon dioxide emissions by 210 million metric tons. Siemens also has ambitious goals for its own environmental protection activities. Siemens customers reduced their carbon dioxide emissions by 210 million metric tons. An example is an HVDC “electricity highway” being built in China between Yunnan Province in the southwest and Guangdong Province in the south. LEDs are the light sources of the future. Siemens’ “Transformational Data Center” Environmental Portfolio component balances economy. In mid-2010. the consequences of extreme weather or a rise in sea levels could impact the global economy and necessitate expenditures of between five and 20 percent of gross world product (GWP). Road traffic energy efficiency can be improved as well — by using LEDs in traffic lights. and their CO2 emissions per kilowatt-hour (g CO2/kWh) are only around 345 grams. 8 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 9 . The Environmental Portfolio for fossil power generation also includes fuel cells. which in turn lowers energy consumption. the heads of the leading industrialized nations — the G8 — pledged to work to cut greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2050.1 million tons of CO2 equivalent. In 2007.000 MW Energy Highway High-voltage direct-current power transmission (HVDC) has proven to be a very effective technique for transmitting electricity over long distances with minimal losses. such a reduction would also lower CO2 emissions by more than 500 million metric tons per year. The Siemens Environmental Portfolio therefore includes the modernization of old coal-fired plants. The Velaro high-speed train — the world’s fastest rail vehicle — requires the equivalent of only two liters of gasoline per person and 100 kilometers when half full. which means transportation must become more environmentally friendly. Siemens’ Environmental Portfolio also includes fluorescent lamps and electronic ballasts.ON by three percentage points to 45 percent — an improvement that reduces annual CO2 emissions by 100. The company’s technicians recently raised the efficiency of the Farge plant operated by E. Siemens’ Environmental Portfolio for the transportation sector also includes traffic and parking management systems. it would provide many companies with opportunities to achieve sustainable growth. which is twice the annual electricity consumption of France. These semiconductor compounds directly convert electricity into light and last for more than 50. and in most cases economic sense as well — after all. gas-insulated transmission lines. Such an investment would make ecological sense. for example. In the same period of time. This is also the target being pushed by climate experts on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). the company emitted a total of 5. and the Siplink DC coupler. The Siemens Environmental Portfolio is expanding at an average annual rate of ten percent and will easily achieve the initial target the company set of €25 billion by 2011.
Energy optimization measures for such motors could cut annual CO2 emissions by 360 million metric tons — that’s almost Australia’s annual emission figure. comparison specific to each product or solution. as compared to 2006 levels. For million metric tons. Such savings alone are enough to recoup the initial investment associated with this type of model. These projects have resulting in savings of more than two billion euros and have reduced carbon dioxide emissions by over 1. Savings of approximately 30 percent 15 cycle power plants. energy performance contracting emissions tor for electricity generation to succeed in a fiercely com** Includes all greenhouse gases: Emissions from production. they already account for more than 15 percent of electricity. tions for energy management. The average efficiency rating for coal-fired power times more emissions per employee — and oil companies generate plants worldwide is 30 percent. Siemens supplies systems for treating industrial waste water used in sectors such as the paper industry. the use of a frequency converter cuts energy consumption by up to 60 percent. Siemens has firmly embedded through a comparison of emisits Environmental Portfolio sions generated by conventional into its business strategy. Energy-saving motors’ losses are more than 40 percent lower than those of standard motors. The largest turbine has an output of 3. high. Flue gas treatment systems. Siemens’ Environmental Portfolio also includes diesel-electric drives for ships. London offers a good example. more effective and efficient insulation. All of these are The greatest potential for energy savings part of the Environmental Portfolio. This will not tion were utilized. Siemens technology achieves a 47 peraround 200 times that level. and biomass plants.000 energy saving contracting projects worldwide. high-voltage direct-current Total transmission (HVDC). where the (including components for renewable power lion’s share of electricity consumption is acgeneration itself) — e. The Cannibal system for wastewater processing reduces biological solids in water by up to 50 percent. thus making them responsible for 21 percent of greenhouse gas emissions. In Germany. By enabling various drive speeds. which account for cludes: Products and solutions that display extraornearly 40 percent of global energy consump19 17 dinary energy efficiency. As much as 97 percent of the Somatom Definition’s weight can be recycled. through business trips.Pictures of the Future | Environmental Portfolio Medical Scanners: Up to 97% Recyclable Ever-more efficient devices and the retrofitting of existing equipment with the latest technology are reducing the environmental impact of medical systems. wind power facilities counted for by electric drives. products and solutions installed during 2009 alone led to savings of 62 tracting has on energy optimization in buildings. industrial facilities. or the impact that energy performance con. Such systems. The Magnetom Essenza magnetic resonance unit has a lower wattage for energy and cooling than its conventional counterparts. ventilation and air conditioning systems can reduce energy consumption in renovated buildings by 20 to 30 percent on average. Siemens also offers complete photovoltaic facilities. and could. voltage direct-current (HVDC) transmission systems were calculated New York City. Finally. cent efficiency rating. The Somatom Definition computer tomograph uses up to 30 percent less electricity than a conventional unit and also contains 83 percent less lead. or other products — the world’s 20 million motors used in manufacturing account for 65 percent of the electricity consumed by industry. emission reductions resulting from the use of low-loss. such as the effect of a Siemens’ Environmental Portfolio reduced annual CO2 emissions for power plant modernization. and energy management and consulting services. heavy metals. and waste incineration plants. air conditioning and heating systems. the use of refurbished systems reduces CO2 emissions by 10. by gas emissions relative to sales by 2011. and Rome combined. steam turbines for these with state-of-the-art frequency convertsolar energy. Customers cent and emit 345 grams of CO2 solutions from 5. Since 2003. the utilization of renewable energy sources The situation is similar in industry. achieve nearly 100percent separation at power plants. remove air pollutants such as nitrogen oxides and sulfur dioxide.g. needed to do so is already available. business trips. be achieved here through intelligent building technologies. UN Statistics.the company’s customers by 210 million metric tons in 2009. energy recuperation systems for the paper industry. the company has installed over 9. such as electric filters. organic compounds. solutions. thereby reducing electricity costs by as much as 50 percent.400 tons per year. Optimized heating. Some 8. both of which consume 80 The growing concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere has a major im. Most of the technology erate than 1990 models. Hong Kong. the British capital could the entire value chain. Mt = megatons (millions of metric tons) is currently 578 g CO2/kWh. New refrigerators pact on climate change — and we must do everything in our power to can also help. and sulfur dioxide by more than 90 percent in many cases. whereby corof Six Major Cities climate protection solutions responding average global emisHong Kong ~ 40 Mt CO2 reductions 300 Mt CO2 and plans on expanding its sion factors for power generaby customers CO2 reductions lead in this area. energy-saving lamps. Experts from improvement can be found in the power gen- Corporate Technology and the Siemens Sectors have also calculated for product of the 233 g CO2/kWh difference and the amount of electricity the first time the greenhouse gas savings potential for each Siemens generated annually at new combined cycle plants installed by Siemens product and solution. and green technologies across behalf of Siemens.000 MW of wind power. which are single-cast and thus have no seams. Industry: Enormous Energy-Saving Potential Whether for steel. Their calculations are based on a before-after during the corresponding business year equals the emission reduction. 210 achieved through Singapore ~ 50 Mt only safeguard Siemens’ own The following example illusSiemens products Total and solutions in future and generate value for trates how the method works: greenthe year in queshouse gas employees and shareholders. however. such as combined tion. are tough enough to withstand even gale-force winds. (as CO2 electricity and heat consumption. which corresponds to more than the current CO2 emissions of Tokyo. Similar potential for and air quality maintenance. Consumers can also do their part — for example. The biggest energy consumers in buildings are technical installations and lighting. In addition. Equipping 2006 2007 2008 2009 2011 (target) and their grid connections. That total is set to increase to 300 million tons by example. which will 2005* (target) * Based on comparisons with existing installations: Wind power the global average emission faclower costs and enable them (since 2003). paper. McKinsey. solutions for the metalworking and mining industries. in fact. In fact. thermal-solar power plants. for example. combined cycle plants. The rotor blades.6 megawatts and a rotor diameter of 120 meters. By comparison. as these require as much as 75 percent less energy to opdiminish this trend. as well as multiple government sources 10 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 11 .6 Megawatts per Turbine Renewable energy sources are becoming increasingly important. Direct comparisons were also made with a reference technology. London. Siemens Building Technologies has to date run more than 1. ∑ ~ 275 Mt equivalent) vehicle fleet. and combined cycle plants will soon Siemens is determined to achieve a 20 percent reduction in greenhouse reach 60 percent.percent less electricity than incandescent light bulbs. In addition. which petitive environment. transEnvironmental Portfolio: now and 2025 using solutions already availmission. and the company’s across all energy sources. There’s still time to act. the Meros process for cleaning sinter exhaust at steel production facilities lowers emissions of dust. ers would result in a 60 percent reduction in Sales from Environmental Portfolio products and solutions (in € billions) Green technologies for water treatment electricity consumption. It offers everything cut its CO2 emissions by 44 percent between from equipment for power generation. AcSiemens is the only company able to offer efficiency-enhancing prodcording to a study conducted by McKinsey on ucts. Wind Power: 3. using energy-saving lamps and light diodes. Siemens supplies highly efficient wind power facilities for applications on land and offshore. State-of-the-art combined cycle tion London ~ 50 Mt 114 emissions produced it will also make a major contripower plants have an efficiency Annual by 60 savings through bution to reducing CO2 emisrating of approximately 58 perSiemens** New York ~ 60 Mt products and City sions worldwide. Air and Water Treatment: Radical Reductions in Pollutants Siemens’ Environmental Portfolio includes systems for maintaining water and air purity. The AC transmission. automakers produced two to five eration sector as well. The experts Siemens Cuts CO2 by as company consistently adalso compared new facilities Rome ~ 15 Mt much as the Emissions dresses the growth market for with existing ones. ventiAll equipment and components related to lation.1 previous years per kilowatt-hour (g CO2/kWh). Singapore. which in25 23 can be found in buildings. and distribution to energy-saving €25 billion by 2011 able — without reducing its citizens’ quality of services. The Norbert Aschenbrenner Sources: Siemens.000 Siemens wind turbines are in operation worldwide. Despite its relatively low CO2 footprint.2011.4 million tons. which save 20 million metric tons of CO2 per year. as well as state-of-the-art IT solulife. will benefit from enhanced en2002– 2007 2009 2011 Tokyo ~ 60 Mt The experts compared this to ergy efficiency. Buildings: Saving € 2 Billion in Energy Buildings account for around 40 percent of global energy consumption.
| Scenario 2030
14 African Sunlight for Europe The goal of the Desertec Industrial initiative is to help Europe meet its future energy requirements by supplying solar power from North Africa. By 2050, 15 to 20 percent of Europe’s energy requirements may be met by solar imports. This would require 2,500 sq km of desert for solar power plants and 3,500 sq km for transmission lines throughout the entire EU-MENA region. The technology to do it exists today. High-Altitude Harvest Siemens has built the world’s largest offshore wind farm on the North Sea off the Danish coast. There, 91 turbines pump around 210 megawatts of electrical power into the network – enough to supply over 136,000 households with electricity. The rotors are so stable they can withstand hurricanes. Tapping an Ocean of Wind Siemens and Statoil Hydro have installed the world’s first largescale floating wind turbine – opening the door to harvesting the power of the wind on the high seas. The turbine, which is located off the southwest coast of Norway, is held in place by three steel cables moored to anchors on the seabed. The power generated by this first floating windmill will be sent ashore via a marine cable.
Harvesting electricity in 2030. A solar thermal power plant in the Moroccan desert covers 100 square kilometers, which makes it the world’s largest installation of its kind. Using HVDCT lines, the electricity is transmitted as direct current at 1000 kilovolts to the coast, where it transforms salt water into pure drinking water. From there, it is transmitted across the sea to Europe, where it provides clean power to many countries.
Morocco in 2030. Karim works as an engineer in the world’s largest solar thermal power plant, which transmits energy from the desert to faraway Europe. Every evening he takes the time to admire the sunset above the countless rows of parabolic mirrors. But today he’s not doing it alone.
The Electric Caravan
he reflected image of the man walking past the glittering parabolic mirrors is oddly distorted. It wanders like a mirage through the seemingly endless row of mirrors, stops briefly and then continues on its way. There’s not a breath of wind, and even though the sun is now low, the temperature is still over 30 degrees Celsius. Karim is in a hurry, because he doesn’t want to miss the daily evening show. Before the sun sets he wants to reach the hill above the “frying pan” — his colleagues’ name for a huge solar thermal installation in the Moroccan desert. In the glow of sunset, the level field of countless mirrors is transformed into a sea of red flames. It’s a spectacle Karim has never yet missed in the five years since he was sent here to help manage the world’s biggest solar thermal power plant. Together with his colleagues, he lives and works in a small settlement on the edge of the installation. With the help of thousands of sensors, solar thermal power experts here monitor the power plant, which covers 100 square kiloReprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 13
Renewable Energy | Scenario 2030
| Solar Energy
Solar-thermal power plants convert sunlight into electricity. Pictured here is the Solnova 1 plant of Abengoa Solar near Seville, Spain, and a plant in California’s Mojave desert (small picture).
meters. As soon as these tiny digital assistants register a defect, Karim and the rest of his maintenance crew go to work. Karim, a true son of the desert, moves through the heat very slowly and carefully — and in contrast with his European colleagues, who rush around sweating, his shirts always remain dry. But now he too is in a hurry, and he’s relieved when he has reached the garage with the off-roaders. Trained as an engineer, Karim is a calm and deliberate man. He seldom uses bad language — only in the rare cases when there isn’t enough sugar in his tea or when one of his colleagues has forgotten to “tank up” the offroader, as has just happened. The electric vehicle wasn’t plugged into an electrical socket — sockets that are supplied with power from the solar thermal installation. Nevertheless, Karim gets into the driver’s seat and presses the starter button. The vehicle’s 150 kilowatt electric motor starts up with a soft purr. A pictogram on the control panel indicates that the battery only has 10 percent of its full capacity. When fully charged, the vehicle has a range of 350 kilometers — and ten percent is not enough to get him up the hill. But the off-roader is equipped with a small, highly efficient gasoline engine for emergencies, which works like a generator and gives the vehicle an additional range of 300 kilometers. And the gas tank is still full. Karim is satisfied, steps on the gas pedal, and the off-roader jolts off almost silently along the sandy trail toward the hill. The final meters are the most difficult ones. The electric off-roader pushes through the sand with great effort, but eventually it reaches its goal. Karim climbs out of the vehicle and hurries to the top of the hill. The sun has already reached the horizon, and the temperature has dropped noticeably. A gentle breeze is coming from the sea. But Karim doesn’t notice it, because he now smells something burning. Nearby he finds a small campfire. In front of it sits a nomad holding a teapot above the crackling flames. The old man greets him with the traditional “Salam” and motions for him to come closer. Karim hasn’t seen any nomads in this area for a long time now — but he knows that they’re always on the go. He gives the old man a friendly nod and sits down beside him at the campfire. “My name is Hussein,” says the nomad as he hands Karim a glass of tea. “What brings you here?” Karim shovels several spoonfuls of sugar into his tea. He points down the hillside. “Do you see those countless mirrors that are just now reflecting the last rays of the sun? They are generating electricity from the sun’s heat. This
power plant produces enough electricity to supply all of Morocco. My job is to make sure everything runs smoothly.” Hussein looks down at the installation, which is starting to glow red in the sunset. “A power plant? I’d say it looks like a work of art created by some crazy European.” Karim grins. “You’re not too far off the mark. This technology was in fact developed in Europe. Installations like this one are being built all over North Africa. They’ve been going up for years. The mirrors automatically swivel so that they’re always facing the sun. They capture the sun’s beams and focus them on a pipe that is filled with a special salt. The salt is heated to as much as 600 degrees Celsius and generates steam, which in turn drives a turbine that produces electricity.” Hussein points to the west, where the sun is dipping beneath the horizon. “And what happens after it gets dark?” he asks. “The power plant is equipped with storage systems that contain the same kind of salt that’s in the pipes,” explains Karim. “This salt stores so much heat that the plant can also produce electricity at night.” The nomad looks thoughtful. “But what do we need all that electricity for?” he asks. “There’s only dust and gravel here wherever you look, and Casablanca is far away.” Karim points to a gigantic high-voltage overhead line leading northward from the installation through the desert until it is lost from sight. “We use some of the power to change seawater into drinking water,” he says. Hussein nods. This makes sense to him. Karim likes explaining things to people and is now hitting his stride. “But we also sell a lot of it at good prices to European countries that want to become less dependent on oil, natural gas, and coal. The energy is transported to them via electricity highways like this one. It works like a caravan — the electricity travels across distances as great as 3,000 kilometers to European cities that use enormous amounts of power. However, by transmitting it at 1000 kilovolts hardly any electricity is lost in transit.” Karim sips his tea with satisfaction. “The desert holds our past and also our future,” he muses. “In the old days we pumped petroleum out of the ground and today we’re harvesting solar energy.” The old man lays a hand gently on Karim’s shoulder. “The sun gives us everything we need to stay alive — our forefathers already knew that,” he says with a smile as he hands a warm blanket to his guest. “But the night is coming on quickly. Here, take this. In spite of your gigantic power plant down there you’re shivering like a sick camel.” Florian Martini
By 2050, electricity generated at solar-thermal power plants and wind farms in Africa and the Middle East is expected to cover 15 to 20 percent of Europe’s energy needs. That’s the goal of the Desertec Industrial Initiative. Siemens is a founding member and technology partner.
uddenly, he no longer had a quiet moment. There were calls from the Chancellery, ministries, ambassadors, and company representatives by the minute — and although Prof. Hans Müller-Steinhagen from the German Aerospace Center (DLR) in Stuttgart, Germany, is used to acting more like a manager than a researcher, he was still overwhelmed. “When you’ve got 250 people working for you, you can’t just hide in the lab,” he says. Still, what he experienced in the summer of 2009, when the whole world started talking about Desertec, was something completely different. In fact, just as Müller-Steinhagen fin-
ishes describing this, the phone rings — this time it’s the German Embassy in London, asking if he’d be willing to do a presentation. Along with the Desertec Foundation and the German Association for the Club of Rome, Müller-Steinhagen’s Institute of Technical Thermodynamics is one of the nerve centers for a project that has been compared in size with the Apollo space program — which culminated in the 1969 moon landing. Desertec, however, focuses on the sun rather than the moon — more specifically on the sun’s energy. In conjunction with the Trans-Mediterranean Renewable Energy Cooperation (TREC), a team
of researchers in Stuttgart under the direction of Müller-Steinhagen’s colleague Dr. Franz Trieb has determined that solar-thermal power plants could meet the world’s entire energy requirements. To achieve that, however, it would be necessary to cover an area measuring around 90,000 square kilometers — that’s about the size of Austria — with mirrors. But, according to the DLR, which has studied the associated technology for over 30 years, if only 15 to 20 percent of Europe’s energy demand — the goal of the Desertec project — were covered, an area of around 2,500 square kilometers would be sufficient.
An additional 3,600 square kilometers would be needed for the high-voltage power lines that would transmit electricity to Europe. This vision is now gaining traction thanks to several large companies that joined to form the €400 billion Desertec Industrial Initiative GmbH (DII) at the end of October 2009. According to DLR estimates, €350 billion will be needed to build the project’s power plants and €50 billion for associated transmission technology. Partners in the initiative include companies that are normally rivals, as well as a major bank and the Münchener Rück insurance company, one of the largest reinsurers in the world. Siemens is one of the driving forces in the initiative — which should be no surprise given that its portfolio of solutions for solarthermal power plants includes all the key components such as steam turbines and receiver tubes, power plant control technology, and systems for transmitting high-voltage direct current with low losses (HVDC, see p. 44). “Solar-thermal power works — there’s no question about it,” says Müller-Steinhagen. In fact, a cluster of power plants in California’s Mojave Desert has demonstrated for over 20 years that a huge amount of electricity can be generated with solar energy. The facilities feed some 350 megawatts into the grid — enough electricity to power 200,000 households. Solel, a solar thermal company that Siemens acquired in late 2009, contributed solar collectors and receivers to plants in the Mojave Desert. In addition, the company is involved in a number of projects, predominantly in Spain, which are due to enter service in 2010 and 2011. In these cases, efficient UVAC receivers, devised by Solel, were chosen by project developers. There are many reasons why solar thermal technology is now being widely discussed and employed, with increased awareness of the need for climate-friendly power being chief among them. In addition, technology for lowloss transmission of electricity over long distances has now established itself, while recent innovations have made solar-thermal power plants even more efficient. When oil prices begin rising again, as is expected after the economic crisis, solar-thermal electricity may quickly become competitive. In fact, its production in favorable regions already costs less than €0.20 per kWh. Major Alliance. If there’s one person who might be called the father of Desertec, it’s Dr. Gerhard Knies. Knies is Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the Desertec Foundation, which developed the Desertec concept that is
Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009
Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009
Renewable Energy | Solar Energy
Reliable and highly flexible steam turbines from Siemens, such as the SST-700, are ideal for the special requirements of solar-thermal power plants (right: Solel’s Lebrija plant in Spain).
now being refined in the DII. A retired physicist, Knies’ favorite quote is from Albert Einstein, who said: “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” Knies believes this logic fits in very well with the issue of climate change brought about by CO2 emissions, as this development can only be counteracted by revamping the energy supply system. Over the years, he has put together an impressive group of supporters, including TREC, the Club of Rome, DLR, and Prince Hassan of Jordan.
According to estimates by Greenpeace, Desertec would lead to the creation of some two million jobs in participating countries by 2050. Dr. René Umlauft, CEO of Siemens’ Renewable Energy Division, has supported the initiative from the start. “Desertec can make a key contribution when it comes to establishing a sustainable energy supply system,” he says. “And with the solutions from its Environmental Portfolio, Siemens is the right technology partner for this visionary project, many of the elements of which have already been implemented in Europe.”
Desertec: 100 gigawatts of installed capacity would cover 15 to 20 percent of Europe’s electricity needs.
“We all understood that putting a halt to climate change would require CO2-free technologies like wind power, geothermal systems and, above all, solar-thermal facilities — all on a mass scale,” he says. Whereas Müller-Steinhagen is one of Desertec’s technology designers, Knies got the associated political process moving. His work culminated in the launch of the implementation phase in the summer of 2009, when a consortium was established and support was obtained from companies such as Siemens. The DII intends to develop business plans and financing concepts to supply the MENA region and Europe with power produced using solar and wind energy ressources. The goal is to build a belt of solar-thermal power plants in North Africa and the Middle East, which would be linked via high-voltage lines with local consumers and European countries. Plans call for achieving a capacity of 100 gigawatts (GW) and the supply of 700 terawatt-hours (TWh) per year by 2050, which would cover 15 to 20 percent of Europe’s electricity needs. Obviously, these plants could meet an even higher share of energy demand in the dynamically growing countries in which they would be located. The electricity requirement in the MENA Region (Middle East and North Africa) is expected to increase five-fold over the next 30 to 40 years, to 3,500 TWh. “Solar-thermal plants and wind power facilities could, for example, play a key role in the energy-intensive desalination of seawater,” says Knies. Moreover, because as much as 80 percent of the value created through construction of the power plant facilities will remain in the MENA countries themselves (e.g. through the production of mirrors, foundations, and frames), a project like Desertec would also greatly boost development in the region. For instance, Siemens is the market leader in the construction of new offshore wind turbines, many of which can be found on European seas (see p. 20), and it has, through Solel, strengthened its capability to offer the key components for the construction of parabolic trough power plants from a single source and to further enhance the efficiency of these plants. Siemens technology can be found in solar power plants built by other companies as well. At the beginning of 2009, for example, the Andasol parabolic trough plant went online in Andalusia, Spain. Just Follow the Sun. The Andasol plant is equipped with curved parabolic mirrors laid out in long rows covering an area of 500,000 square meters. These mirrors will enable the plant, which will consist of three complexes in its final expansion stage, to generate 150 MW in all, and 176 GWh per complex and year. To
optimize the facility’s yield, the mirrors continuously track the sun to within one-tenth of a degree of arc. The light they reflect is channeled into vacuum-insulated receiver tubes that contain a special oil that is heated to nearly 400 degrees Celsius. The oil later transfers its heat to water in heat exchangers, thereby creating steam. “At that point, a solar-thermal plant begins operating like a conventional facility,” says Umlauft. That’s because the downstream “power block,” in which electricity is generated from steam, employs the proven technology used in steam-turbine plants. But solar-thermal plants have special requirements with regard to turbine size and flexibility. For one thing, turbines in certain types of solar plants need to be able to start up very quickly when the sun rises. That’s one reason why many solar power plant operators opt for customized Siemens technology. In May 2009, Siemens opened a new turbine production hall in Görlitz, Germany, that produces the SST-700, the world market leader when it comes to parabolic trough power plants. In fact, Siemens’ share of this market is more than 80 percent. Together with control systems from Siemens, the SST-700 turbine is also being used in another power plant in Andalusia: Solnova 1 in Sanlúcar la Mayor, near Seville. Power generation was scheduled to begin at the facility in late 2009. SST-700 turbines are already in operation in many CSP plants around the world. The model is popular due to its reliability and specifications — which are very well-suited to the size class currently in operation — and its flexibility. “This is important because in Seville we have light cloud cover about 90 days a year. The plant’s output can fluctuate considerably
on such days,” says Valerio Fernandez, Director of Operations and Maintenance at Abengoa Solar, which operates Solnova. “The turbine therefore has to be flexible enough to make up for these fluctuations.” As the morning sun rises, Fernandez inspects the Solnova construction site, where workers are busy tightening bolts and assembling and polishing equipment. “On the whole in Seville we have very good conditions for solar-thermal power plants. About 210 days a year of perfect sunshine, from morning to evening,” says Fernandez. The Spanish feed-in law for subsidizing solar-thermal power has triggered a real boom. Since 2006, producers have been entitled to receive a maximum of approximately €0.27 per kWh from the government, and civil servants are being buried in applications. Big Up-front Investment. Depending on the location and sunlight intensity, it now costs up to €0.23 to produce a kWh of electricity, which is relatively high. Electricity from wind power, on the other hand, can already be produced at
competitive prices in many regions in Europe. But things weren’t always this way. Thirty years ago, it cost around €3 million to install one MW of onshore wind-power output, while today it costs only €1 million. Experts expect a similar development with regard to solar-thermal power. Here, the high cost at the moment is mainly due to the initial investment. For example, a 50-MW facility with heat storage costs around €300 million, which has to be paid off over the plant’s useful life, which can extend up to 40 years. Heat storage isn’t cheap, as indicated by existing systems at the European Center for Solar Energy Activities, the Plataforma Solar de Almería, as well as in Andasol. But by storing heat produced during the day, both locations can generate electricity at night as well. Up until now, large insulated tanks containing liquid salts with a melting point of around 200 degrees Celsius have mostly been used as storage media. Researchers at DLR and other facilities are now trying to find ways to reduce costs by altering the storage media or finetuning power plant components to ensure that
as little heat as possible is lost during the heat exchange process between the hot heat transfer agent and the steam. Fernandez thus expects that the initial investment per MW of installed generating capacity will soon decrease. “So far we’ve been producing mostly one-of-a-kind equipment and procuring special components, like receiver tubes, from small production series. But when mass production for solar-thermal plants begins, investment and power generation costs will fall dramatically,” he predicts. Perfect Match. Industrial consolidation is proving helpful in this context. The acquisition of Solel Solar Systems by Siemens in October 2009 is a case in point. Solel has decades of experience in the development and manufacture of solar field equipment, including the high-tech receivers. In addition the company is active in the planning and construction of solar fields. This is a complementary fit with the traditional Siemens competencies for the power block, where steam is transformed into electrical energy, as Umlauft from Siemens confirms: “Siemens and Solel are a perfect match. We are the market leader in steam turbines for solar thermal power plants and, with the power block, we can offer a key part for solar power plants.” Bringing the ability to supply the most important key components under one roof opens up greater possibilities for enhancing efficiencies of the integrated solution, thinks Avi Brenmiller, CEO of Solel Solar Systems: “Together, we will utilize our know-how in these core competencies to further optimize the water/steam cycle and to further boost the efficiency of solar thermal power plants.” Solel is not the first acquisition of Siemens in the field of CSP. In March 2009 a 28 percent interest in Archimede Solar was bought. The Italian company develops receiver tubes through which molten salt rather than special oil flows. The advantage of this promising
Areas with the Best Potential for Solar-Thermal Facilities
Desertec’s Energy Mix
Solar-thermal power plants Photovoltaic Wind Hydroelectric Biomass Geothermal
Power lines (e.g. HVDC, with extensions)
m 2.000 k
Suitable: 100–150 GWh/km2.year
Source: Solar Millenium
Source: Desertec Foundation
Good: 150–200 GWh/km2.year Outstanding: 200–300 GWh/km2.year
Area needed for solar-thermal plants to provide electricity to: MENA EU 25 World (2005 consumption)
Ninety percent of the earth’s population lives within less than 3,000 kilometers from the earth’s sunbelt.
The Desertec concept: Solar power in the desert, wind on the coasts, and a network of transmission lines.
Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009
Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009
Desalination at solar-thermal facilities could meet a large portion of this requirement. We’re also experimenting with direct steam generation. Losses can also be minimized through the use of different storage media. if we can boost efficiency through many measures. where stone deserts offer an optimal location for solar-thermal power plants for a different reason: There are no sand storms that could damage mirrors. and the resulting steam drives a turbine whose motion is converted into electricity in a generator. for example. “economy. Many solar-thermal plants are also equipped with heat storage so that they can produce electricity at night as well. Hans Müller-Steinhagen. We’ve already overcome the first major challenge with the launch of the Desertec Industrial Initiative. many CSP power plants (especially those not equipped with heat storage) need to be started up very quickly at sunrise. Dietmar Retzmann.S. either directly or indirectly. losses must be minimized — and this is where high-voltage direct current transmission (HVDC) comes in. and security. reaching a volume of over €20 billion by then. we saw just how volatile they can be. “Energy systems must be effective in terms of three dimensions. with a receiver tube mounted along the focal line (top). and it will enhance European energy security because it will substantially reduce dependence on fossil fuel imports. However. Utilizing salt as both the transfer agent and storage medium eliminates the need for a heat exchanger. The large turbines used in today’s coal-fired power plants operate at over 600 degrees Celsius and at pressures of up to 285 bar. This approach will work because investment costs can be kept at a manageable level. However. A number of competing technologies will probably continue to exist side by side as they undergo further development. The German Aerospace Center is therefore working closely with Siemens in many areas to ensure that the solar-thermal plants of the future will be built in the near. Yemen. However. environment. What’s more. according to Müller-Steinhagen. There’s also another important difference between CSP units and coal power plants: Power generated at the former is completely CO2 free. Construction of a new factory for producing Archimede receivers in northern Italy has begun this year. condensers can also be cooled in dry regions using air. CSP plants have much lower steam parameters and outputs. The facility will initially generate electricity for the local market. And with the right financial incentives. The main issue for the MENA Region is to ensure continued stable economic development and a reliable supply of energy for desalination plants which produce drinking water. a 160-MW facility currently under construction that combines a conventional gas and steam turbine plant with solar technology. many plants. Müller-Steinhagen’s teams have made solar electricity generation much more efficient.400 kilometers (see p. A cost-saving alternative is offered by Fresnel technology. 55. Don’t forget that the collectors account for nearly half of the total investment cost. UK. Working closely with designers and facility operators. the infrastructure needed to transport some of the energy produced in Africa and the Middle East to Europe involves projects that can only be successfully implemented by a large number of big companies — companies that can supply high voltage direct current technology and that also possess the necessary project expertise.g. “Transferring power via conventional AC lines over thousands of kilometers from Africa to Europe would lead to huge losses. new water sources with a volume equivalent to the entire flow of the Nile need to be tapped by 2050. steam is either stored directly in heat-insu- 18 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 19 . before becoming a dean at the University of Surrey. We have worked with Siemens here on liquid separators. which ages with frequent temperature changes and thus must be replaced. the cumulative effect over the lifespan of a facility could be substantial. Here. he worked for seven years at the University of Auckland in New Zealand. “Such HVDC lines are like electricity highways. Siemens has been working on the associated technology for many years. This eliminates the need for an expensive heat transfer agent. Algeria is the site for the future Hassi R’Mel power plant. Some companies are now also testing direct steam generation systems in which water is used Cold Heat transfer medium (e.” he says. according to Michael Weinhold. the sun that beats down on this region. it will become cheaper. A liquid flows through this tube as a heat transfer agent. could gradually go online. electricity. could one day be bringing water. even if it’s just one percentage point at a time. salt) Heat storage Water-cooled condenser Source: Siemens lated pressure containers or the heat from the steam is transferred to an additional storage medium — usually in the form of the special salts that can also be used in the receiver tubes. which is why such plants must be kept small. North Africa will eventually have an electricity sur- plus. Three Ways to Put Solar Power to Work The basic principle underlying solar-thermal electricity generation (concentrated solar power — CSP) is simple: Energy from the sun heats water. are used at such facilities. it’s also the sum of many smaller and more easily manageable projects. “We’re going to need them in Europe when we expand our grid and large amounts of electricity from wind power facilities will have to be moved great distances. and North Africa than in southern Spain. the farther away the mirrors are from the tower. Instead of using special oil or molten salt. Costs will decline when large companies start using and further developing the technology. for example. Here. which could be transmitted to Europe. In Egypt.” says Dr. All CSP plants concentrate solar energy using mirrors distributed across a small area in order to generate high temperatures.” Desertec might therefore become a key component of tomorrow’s energy networks. Andreas Kleinschmidt Making Solar-Thermal Power Competitive When will solar-thermal electricity become competitive? Müller-Steinhagen: That depends on prices for conventional fuels — and in 2008. special salts can be used instead of thermal oils. thereby increasing the efficiency of the plant. How a Parabolic Trough Plant Operates Solar field with parabolic troughs Hot Steam turbine Heat exchanger Generator for producing electricity as the heat transfer agent in the receivers and is sent on to the turbine as hot steam in a closed loop. One result will be the mass production of components. long strips of flat mirrors (which are cheaper to produce than parabolic troughs) reflect light onto a receiver tube suspended above them (middle). The water vaporizes.Renewable Energy | Solar Energy future technology is that unlike oil.000 kilometers — that’s roughly the distance from the southern end of the Sahara to Central Europe. it will be possible to operate some of the parabolic collectors at the Andasol-3 power plant with such a direct steam generation system. As we begin producing more solarthermal electricity. In conjunction with modern technology. I’m confident that we can become competitive in about 15 years. with the construction of more and more power plants. Siemens is in a very good position to play such a role. Archimede tubes are already being used at a solar field in southern Italy. Egypt. which drives a turbine in the form of steam.” HVDC loses only around ten percent of power over 3. In addition. such plants can be operated profitably. we could reduce the area needed for the mirrors by one-third. which may one day lower both investment and operating costs relative to other technologies. Siemens’ leading expert for HVDC transmission technology. it will be designed in an economical manner. future. Electricity Highway. After it cools. which boosts efficiency because the steam that drives the turbine can also be brought to higher temperatures and pressures. for example. thereby enabling an efficiency as high as 46 percent. where 5. molten salt can remain in the cycle. which is why smaller turbines. although efficiency in this case is 20 percent lower. after which it transfers its heat via a heat exchanger to water. as water can be used to generate steam directly. It also depends on the development of investment and operating costs for solar-thermal facilities. Together with the DLR. Andreas Kleinschmidt Andreas Kleinschmidt Prof. After earning a PhD in process technology. It also allows operation at temperatures up to 550 degrees Celsius. the facility is expected to enter service in 2010. is considered to be ideal for solar power because the Nile can provide sufficient cooling water for the condensers in the steam cycle. has headed the Institute of Technical Thermodynamics at the German Aerospace Center since 2000. At the same time. which in turn requires highly flexible turbines. Their institute is a global leader in its field. These salts can be heated up to 550 degrees. the lower the efficiency. and life to the desert. However. That sort of value is common in Spain today. each with a capacity of at least 50 megawatts. like the Siemens SST-700. Alternatively.” says Retzmann. a special synthetic oil is the most commonly used substance today. the salt flows back into the receiver. the low initial investment cost for Fresnel power plants comes at the price of lower efficiency. where it again “harvests” solar energy. is sinking at the rate of six meters per year. chief technologist at Siemens Energy. a heat exchanger is no longer required. Desertec will be good for the environment.000 MW of power will be transported 1. If we could increase our efficiency to 20 percent from the current average of 15 percent. Conditions for solar power generation are even more favorable in the deserts of the U. The project provides solutions in three key areas. Interview conducted by Andreas Kleinschmidt. As a result.” The key issue with solar-thermal power today is no longer feasibility but the ability to achieve efficiency in large-scale applications. Experts believe that the market for solar-thermal power plants will post double-digit annual growth between now and 2020.44). Siemens is now building the most powerful HVDC connection in the world in China. the use of salt eliminates the need for high-loss heat exchangers because the salt in the receiver tubes can also be used as the storage medium and can be pumped into an insulated tank as well. Isn’t it possible that this could happen with Desertec? Müller-Steinhagen: Although Desertec is a gigantic project as a whole. What type of research still needs to be performed? Müller-Steinhagen: Our main goal is to increase electricity production efficiency. CSP power plants can also be built as central receiver systems that use flat mirrors to reflect sunlight onto a small area on the top of a centrally located tower (bottom) that is often taller than 100 meters. So. The oil is heated to approximately 370 degrees Celsius. The water table in Sanaa. in such a case. Saving the world with big projects is a concept that has sometimes caused major problems — for instance in dam construction projects. “Such losses can be greatly reduced by using HVDC lines and undersea cables. Clearly. where water in the receiver tubes is converted into steam and sent on directly to the turbine. The most widely used technology today employs half-open parabolic mirrors. rather than in the distant. Thanks to the major advances achieved so far. it’s also possible to produce steam directly in absorber tubes. Such an approach might make sense in parts of Algeria. After all. This approach enables the highest possible temperatures to be achieved (up to 850 degrees Celsius).
World Record for Wind Power.” says Møller. Horns Rev II is the name of this wind farm. cial every time I ascend a windmill and look out over the North Sea. the structure sways lightly in the wind — despite its weight of over 300 tons. Søren Kringelholt Nielsen and his 800 employees at Siemens Rotor Blade Manufacturing. experts from Siemens can remotely recognize when a problem is brewing.” he says. And that’s just fine as far as Møller is concerned. At the same time. while the edges at the tips are nearly as sharp as knives. A total of 91 turbines from Siemens will then be able to pump around 210 MW of electrical power into the network — enough to supply over 136. The floor of the factory is covered with neat rows of the gigantic rotor blades. Secured with ropes. workers roll out long alternate layers of fiberglass mats and balsa wood in a form to make a kind of “sand- 20 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 21 .500 rpm. Because such plants rely on the wind. Depending on the strength of the wind. which transforms the rotation of the blades into a generator speed of A 1. this bounty of green energy does have its downside.” explains Nielsen. the huge 45-meter rotor blades stretch into the sky. Fall 2007. it’s possible to alter the white blades’ angle of attack so that they operate in the most efficient manner. As a result. can be run up or run down according to demand. continuously measure the vibrations of the machine parts.3 megawatts (MW) of electrical power once the wind speed exceeds eleven meters a second — but only if no visitors are present in the nacelle. On arrival. “The blades are extremely robust. the staterun network operator. ensure that the huge blades are flexible. the windmills can produce half of the country’s electricity. good sea legs. What’s remarkable is that the rotor blades are manufactured as a single component without seams — a method that only Siemens has mastered. This small kingdom is not only the largest producer of wind power plants. the wind turbines are switched off for safety reasons. we climb narrow ladders and ride unsteady freight elevators in order to get to the top of a windowless tower. Only the most observant visitors notice that the nacelle and blades incline slightly upwards at an angle of seven degrees “We have to maintain a safe distance between the blades and the mast. this is small consolation for visitors. you can’t help but feel there’s very little between you and the abyss beneath your feet. uses a sophisticated energy management system that is partially based on several weather forecasting systems to get the best out of variable wind energy. this figure can even rise to 100 percent. In this way experts can detect anomalies and prevent damage from occurring. “because flexibility is what provides our wind power plants with their tremendous stability. other types of power plants. which is situated on a sandbank about 30 kilometers off the Danish coast. Germany. Such superlatives are nothing special by Denmark’s standards because they are already multiple world record holders. The surface of the blades is so smooth that you can’t see or A wind turbine produces enough energy to boil six liters of water in just one second. Although currently capable of coping with peak loads and stabilizing the network. which is located 230 kilometers away in Aalborg. The generator is hidden at the back and can produce 2.dk. Imagine placing a mid-sized car at the end of a three-kilometer beam. A neon tube lights up the long shaft containing the gearbox.” Møller presses a switch and two roof wings open up above the nacelle to unveil a view of the North Sea. 60). A host of sensors. In comparison. weigh dozens of tons. and must operate flawlessly in the windy North Sea — even during a hurricane. each of which is bigger than the wing of a jumbo jet. “When anyone is visiting. Even severe storms haven’t caused any problems. However. and on a stormy night.” says Møller.” says Nielsen. who heads Offshore Technology at Siemens Wind Power division in Denmark. long-term energy production plans Norway’s pumped storage power plants to be used later during calm weather. All the blades for the European market are produced here. who heads Rotor Blade Manufacturing in Aalborg. At the start of the process. excess wind-generated electricity is diverted to trolled system. they have to do all this for 20 years or more. Despite their size. Using this data. both inside and outside the compartment. nybody visiting Jesper Møller at his favorite workplace needs to have a head for heights. it will be the largest offshore wind farm in the world. In order to quickly respond to fluctuations. Some are rotating energetically in the are out of the question. However. the aerodynamic blades can be bent by several centimeters using nothing more than your hand. “They are so flexi- withstand during strong winds. He has been building wind farms for the last ten years and has developed a special bond with his turbines. “I experience something spe- ble that they bend inward considerably in stormy conditions. “This apparent fragility is deceiving.” says Møller.” Just in front of him. Even though you are standing on a secure grid. and no inclination toward claustrophobia. The park is still under construction but when completed at the end of 2009. breeze. On really windy days. Perhaps the figures aren’t so surprising when you consider that Denmark is a windy country and enjoys only ten calm days a year. such as gas and cogeneration plants. What’s more.” Robust Blades. these white giants can play only a limited role when it comes to meeting the fluctuating demand for grid power. Dozens of wind turbines extend out in a row toward the horizon like a string of pearls.” a patented process (see Pictures of the Future. while a few more are mere foundations protruding out of the sea. their tips roaring through the air at 220 kilometers per hour and producing enough energy to boil six liters of water every second. The 82 ton-nacelle can also turn on its own axis in the wind — courtesy of a computer-confeel a single seam. others are waiting to be commissioned. That’s why Energinet. The project is both a technical and logistical challenge because the individual components are huge. In contrast. The secret of the blades’ stability can be found in the 250-meter-long production hall where they are manufactured using “Integral Blade Technology. because each unusual reading triggers an alarm. has so far only managed seven percent. “Although the work is routine. this arrangement may not be equal to future demands — particularly as the Danish government plans to substantially expand its use of wind power in coming years.Renewable Energy | Offshore Wind The construction of the world’s largest offshore wind farm — the Horns Rev II off Denmark — is a challenge from the production of rotors and trans-shipment at the harbor to assembly on the open sea. “It’s designed to do that. The forces that are being placed on the other end of the beam are the same as those a rotor blade needs to High-Altitude Harvest Siemens is building the world’s largest offshore wind farm 30 kilometers from the Danish coast. Møller invites his guests into the inner sanctum: the approximately six meter-long cylinder that forms the head of a wind power plant. The North Sea swell is lapping at the foundations 60 meters below. but also generates 20 percent of its energy requirements with wind power.000 households. p.
where anchoring is relatively easy. Here. “It takes six to eight hours to completely assemble a wind power plant. thus preventing the wind turbine from bobbing to and fro in the waves like a bathtub thermometer. as well as the relevant safety aspects of wind turbine construction. is difficult. are more than just training objects that provide hands-on experience. Deep. Texas.” says Nielsen. Denmark. which would shift the facility’s weight and compensate for swaying movements. Denmark. The vacuum sucks liquid epoxy resin through the fiberglass mats and the balsa wood.” Swimming Packhorse. as are Siemens customers. are to be trained here. Newcastle. Møller has spotted the Sea Power. the blades are “baked” in a gigantic oven at a temperature of 70 degrees Celsius for eight hours.3MW wind turbine from Siemens. Tapping an Ocean of Wind StatoilHydro of Norway and Siemens have developed the world’s first floating wind turbine — opening the door to harvesting the power of the wind on the high seas. This swimming packhorse then transports its freight.” he says. “In this Eldorado for technicians. stacking three huge propellers per rotor on top of one another. there are visitors who have climbed the tower with Jesper Møller who have indicated that they would rather stay a little longer because. And this can happen quite often on the North Sea. thereby enabling the facility to balance out any swinging motions. The system makes it possible to alter the angle of the rotor blades and thus the structure’s response to incoming wind. and Houston. all the blades are equipped with a lightning conductor. which is renowned for being rough. The assembly ship’s crane lifts the steel tower. it has a floor area of about 1.” Wind power plant operators particularly benefit because the maintenance requirements and costs fall. “That’s our hotel ship. Driven by the howling wind. It’s hard to believe. StatoilHydro is responsible for the underwater part of the facility. By the time a blade begins its life on a mast at Horn Rev II. Gigantic cranes lift the 60-ton rotors onto the deck of the ship. a scaffolding. Candidates include Japan and the U. the mast stays upright. and servicing — all in a practical setting. The buoy’s 120-meter-long float is designed to ensure that the structure’s center of gravity is far below the water surface. few energy resources and little available land. leaning only slightly. “Thanks to this experience. the individual blades are attached to rotors and loaded — together with “Repairs on the open sea cost about ten times as much as repairs on land. With its turbine expertise.” In contrast. Aptly named the Wind Power Training Center.100 square meters.S. At 12 kilometers from land.000 technicians.” The bottom and top sections are subsequently joined and a vacuum is created inside. stays in the nacelles.” says Nielsen. The mast’s ballast tanks make it possible to precisely set its center of gravity. it is held in place by three steel cables moored to anchors on the seabed. According to Gneiße. As soon as the height of the waves exceeds 1. the center in Bremen covers global training needs in terms of wind power. Weaknesses are unacceptable because maintenance costs must be kept to a minimum during the 20 years in which the blades must withstand wind and weather. Tim Schröder Future offshore wind turbines will be fixed to a steel tube extending 120 meters under the surface. “Repairs on the open sea cost about ten times as much as repairs on land. wind potential at 5 to 50 nautical miles off U. In case evacuation is impossible in the face of a rapidly-developing storm. Siemens opened one of Europe’s most up-to-date training centers for wind energy in Bremen. the resin finds its way through all of the layers and evenly joins the two sides of the blade. It’s home for the workers who are responsible for the installation and cabling of the wind mills. Every year some 1.” says Gneiße. ladder constructions. “Naturally.” says Sjur Bratland.” Bratland believes the Hywind solution will be perfect for regions that have deep coastal waters not suited for ordinary offshore windfarms. our employees can demonstrate their knowledge of the technical processes in a wind turbine. An offshore farm with up to 200 turbines could supply almost a million households with electricity.” says project manager Nils Gneiße. “We still need to test all of these things.” says Siemens Renewable Energy Division CTO Henrik Stiesdal. each blade will be struck at least once by lightning. where winds are stronger and more consistent than near the coast. power plants. however. StatoilHydro is using a “spar buoy” concept that features a steel and concrete buoy equipped with “We hope to be able to use this concept at depths of up to 700 meters. the Mediterranean region and the Asia-Pacific region. coastlines is greater than the installed generating capacity of all U. “Regardless of whether an employee becomes stuck during maintenance work or simply gets cramps — at a height of a hundred meters even minor incidents are considered emergencies that call for swift action. Prospective assembly workers are not only offered theory courses covering the construction and operation of wind power plants. “What we’re doing here is developing technology for a future market. But now Siemens and StatoilHydro are taking their Hywind project out to the high seas. Along with training facilities in Brande.S. Siemens is a reliable partner with a lot of forward-looking ideas. which is more than 900 gigawatts. where the wind turbine is located. which would become uneconomical at depths in excess of 100 meters. blades are strapped onto articulated trucks for the 280-kilometer journey to Esbjerg harbor. and is situated between the European and Industrial harbors of the north German Hanseatic city. the country’s energy sector is looking to the sea. The first step in that direction is to test the prototype.Renewable Energy | Offshore Wind | Floating Wind Farms wich. this is possible only with good weather.5 meters the work is called off. which weigh some 80 tons. Along with three steel cables.” an assembly ship that transports the components of three separate wind power plants to their destinations in the North Sea. And to ensure that the structure doesn’t drift. the turbine has been producing 2. the cramped nacelle seems preferable to the idea of climbing back down to a swaying boat at the foot of the mast — especially when you’ve forgotten your seasickness pills. but good wind conditions at sea. 50 kilometers to Horns Rev II. Expansion. From his nacelle 60 meters above the North Sea. we want to increase safety for our technicians. which are far from comfortable. while Siemens will supply the tower and the complete turbine. project manager for StatoilHydro. unlike a massive pillar design. “At the end of this process we have a seamless rotor blade with no weak points. 22 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 23 . most of whom will come from Central and Eastern Europe. the mast’s rotor blades spin furiously in the night air. They spend two weeks at a time here at sea. and crane and tower models. The simple anchor/steel cable design is the key that makes it possible to install the turbine in very deep waters. “With the help of these turbine nacelles.3 megawatts while bobbing in the north sea about 12 kilometers southwest of the Norwegian coast. Although it has neither pillars nor stilts for support. Since late 2009. It’s also been suggested that the generator and hub could be tipped. The prototype is outfitted with an electronic control system to ensure that the turbine doesn’t tip too far and become unstable.” the nacelles and the masts — onto the “Sea Power.S. At greater depths. First of all. where it serves primarily as a training center for service technicians. each tower is outfitted with emergency storage facilties for fresh water and energy bars. but to date. due to factors such as fishing grounds and bird migration zones. The components are then bolted together by hand.000 tons. a simulator for the control technology. As Norway’s potential wind energy sites are often in nature conservation areas. The floating wind turbine is a cooperative project between Siemens’ Renewable Energy division — the world market leader G ballast tanks — a concept that has been used with floating drilling platforms for many years. but there it — a prototype wind turbine floating on the water. they will be able to perform maintenance work for customers faster and more efficiently. UK. Norway is ideal for prototype testing because the seabed drops steeply offshore. the seabed is about 220 meters below the surface. management. A hall measuring about 600 square meters forms the heart of the building. these have all been located near the coast in depths of less than 30 meters. one of Siemens’ transport hubs for wind farms in Europe. before placing the tower sections and the nacelle beside them. it will have an amazing journey behind it. The power generated will be sent ashore via a marine cable. According to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in the U. for instance. the tube makes the design robust enough to work on the high seas. which houses a 2. Germany. who is based in Brande. which weighs over 1. The limit is three days. while the reliability of the turbines increases. are of course much shorter. That’s why the training program offers emergency exercises under real-life conditions — up to now a first for this type of training center. Florian Martini How to Become a Windmill Builder In August 2009.” says Møller..S. For its Hywind prototype. the ten-meter turbines. Here. To further increase their resilience. Sebastian Webel ale-force winds are whipping waves to dizzying heights as a thin silhouette of an 80-meter-high mast dimly appears through the mist. He points at an old ferry that is anchored not far from the wind farm. and finally the rotor onto a yellow pedestal — a steel foundation that was driven 20 meters into the sandy seabed some time earlier. On the other hand. but are also given the opportunity to carry out practical maintenance work on real objects. “Statistically. Denmark set up its first offshore wind farms more than 15 years ago. even when there is no emergency. the nacelle. Over the next two years the prototype installation will prove whether it can stand up to the region’s notoriously nasty wind and waves.” he says. for offshore wind farms — and the Norwegian energy company StatoilHydro. Finally. the costs for steel and anchors would make such facilities too costly.
Burchardt is sitting in a small office on the outskirts of Aalborg. past its fields and farms and some of the country’s 3. In response. we fill the interior with bags of air and then inject several tons of liquid epoxy resin inside.” he says. all-in-one piece. some are built far from Denmark. Iowa. During a trip through the Danish countryside. It is only now that the shape of the huge units on the backs of the molds becomes evident. “The big challenge in Aalborg.” says Burchardt. ow black clouds and bone-chilling wind are blowing in over the whitecaps on the North Sea. the company produces rotor blades that are up to 52 meters in length. At the same time there are no individual components to clutter up the hall. In the Aalborg facility’s production hall. which finds a smooth course between the pockets and the fiberglass and thus evenly joins the two sides of the blade. Burchardt builds huge wind power plants. and 12 tons in a 52-meter blade.6 megawatts. and once the epoxy resin has been injected.” says Burchardt. the workforce is not exposed to toxic vapors. wind mill blades are baked as a single piece — without any seams. as we also call it — we’ve been able to do away with adhesives. a number of countries introduced tax incentives for wind power.” says Burchardt with evident pride. we bake the whole thing for eight hours at a temperature of 70 degrees Celsius.” says Henrik Stiesdal. before the endurance of the material is again tested with a final static test. He indicates the different layers of fiberglass and the wooden mat carefully embedded in the midst of the multilayered structure.700 Siemens employees manufacture the heart of every wind power plant: its turbines’ nacelles (housing). 2007. for logistical reasons. But instead of fixing the two sides together with an “With this method it only takes 48 hours from the first step to a completed blade.500 fellow employees of Siemens Wind Power. This means they’re not a problem to dispose of at the end of their 20 year service life. and Japan. “and once it has been injected with epoxy resin it turns into a fiber-reinforced plastic composite. One such location is Fort Madison. In Denmark. the individual L components of such a wind turbine are so large that.” Rather than standing at the beach. It also manufactures one of the world’s largest serially-produced wind turbines.” adhesive. the molds act as a huge cake pan with an integrated oven. a mold is lowered from the ceiling and seamlessly encloses the two sides of a blade. each of which can generate enough electricity to boil a bath full of ice-cold water within 30 seconds. Blade Baking. where repair and replacement costs are extremely high. This is because many of them are destined for offshore wind farms. Thus. Together with 5.” To achieve this. “Using this integral blade process — or one-shot technique. but also the largest supplier of offshore wind turbines. some of which are over 50 meters in length. which has been associated with dioxin. “Fiberglass. As the only country 24 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2007 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2007 25 .” Once completed. some of which weigh 16 metric tons. 2. Aalborg.” How can such a length of fabric give a rotor blade its enormous strength? “The mold is initially lined with many layers of fiberglass. Chief Technology Officer at Siemens in Brande. stretching out along the floor and even hanging upside down from the ceiling.Renewable Energy | Wind Turbines Finished blades await shipment (below). good weather means a stiff wind. our rotor blades don’t contain any polyvinyl chloride. Finally. for example. “That’s one day to place all the fiberglass.” At the far end of the hall. But for Claus Burchardt. In a move to reduce its dependence on oil. Here.” As Burchardt speaks. Catching the Wind Siemens Wind Power is more than just the global market leader for offshore wind turbines. “It all began with the energy crisis of 1973/1974.3 times the maximum operating load. Denmark looked at the possibility of building nuclear power plants. Denmark’s third largest city. “There are historical reasons. huge molds are being removed (center) from raw blades (left). To enhance stiffness. In the meantime. “The cost to the manufacturer of carrying out a repair on the open sea is around ten times as high as that for an onshore installation. the blades are then mounted on special test beds and made to vibrate around two million times. To simulate 20 years of material fatigue. In fact. because they are primarily made of recyclable fiberglass. “Without that. Before delivery. There’s not a hint of chemical smell and most workers don’t have to wear special protective clothing. which makes it considerably stronger than other blades. and another to inject and bake. we would be struggling to find customers. talented engineers designed the first wind turbines. After that the blade is adjusted and painted white — it’s a mixture of high-tech and skilled handicraft.” says Burchardt. Local infrastructure also plays an important role in choosing locations. I ask why the biggest manufacturers of wind power plants are in Denmark. the rotor blades are delivered by truck or ship to customers worldwide. In their closed state. The material has the appearance of a finely woven carpet but feels like plastic. which an employee is lining with what look like lengths of white fabric. while new ones are already in the making (right). “The other side of the blade is made up of the same ingredients and then joined with its mate. By most people’s standards this is anything but great weather. explains Burchardt. was selected because of its proximity to a harbor with quays capable of handling rotor blades. making it a lucrative business. are manufactured to such a high level of precision that they perform exactly as required without any need to upgrade or adjust them for 20 years. a town of 6.S. “On the large turbines an everyday wind speed of 10 meters per second forces 100 tons of air through the rotor every second. Good Vibrations. which has an output of 3. samples of the rotor blades have to go through a variety of static and dynamic tests. one-shot process. most crucially. instead of several days. In Brande. a layer of wood is placed between the fiberglass layers. — despite their huge size and strength — must have an optimal aerodynamic shape right down to the smallest angle and. they must be very robust. they are heated to bake the blade into a solid whole. That requires a robust blade!” Extreme quality requirements such as these have caused many manufacturers to pull out of the offshore sector.” says Burchardt. “is to ensure that all of the rotor blades we produce. The bags inside the blade defy the heat and prevent the blade from collapsing during production. there are huge blade-shaped molds like cake pans. and we end up with a rotor blade that is produced in a single casting and therefore without any seams whatsoever. First of all. “For us. which is some 250 meters in length. the rotor blades “A few years ago we developed a method of manufacturing the blades as a single. they are subjected to 1.500 wind turbines. In the mid-1980s. nothing could be better. in a unique. In fact there are seven metric tons of this material in a 45-meter blade. Unlike products from rival manufacturers. Burchardt halts at one of the blade molds. where a new rotor blade factory opened in September. In a patented process. including destinations as far away as the U. head of blades research and development at Siemens’ Wind Power Business Unit. As a result. Siemens has not only become the most experienced.000 inhabitants located some 150 kilometers south of Aalborg.
the cost of CCS systems is expected to drop by half from between $50 to $100 per ton of CO2 to between $25 to $50. annual demands of more than 130.000 8. CO2 emissions will reach double the 1990 level by 2030 (graphic above and Pictures of the Future. For an offshore turbine this is a job that takes place on the open sea. the CO2 emissions resulting from worldwide power generation could be reduced by up to 18 gigatons by 2050. Various systems are spread over two stories. wind. are lined up. and Brazil.000 20.3 and 3. The new agreement should provide for a reduction of 25 to 40 percent by 2020. natural gas. this figure is likely to reach over 80 percent.000 Source: Frost & Sullivan. As if in a child’s toy box. the industrial nations committed themselves to cutting their greenhouse gases by an average of five percent by 2012 compared with 1990. awaiting installation. The towers are assembled on land. coal will experience a boom. 36. A 2007 GTZ TERNA country study reports that a good 80 percent of all power generated in China is produced by fossil plants.868 PJ (petajoule) Demand for Renewable Energy in Europe 20. According to the German development organization GTZ. “We’re standing at the front of the drive shaft. complete with crane. Sylvia Trage many emerging markets are causing the global de- mand for energy to increase rapidly.9 billion in 2006 to $17. massive metal nacelles. each of which weighs around 35 tons. It then takes less than half a day to install a single turbine weighing 500 tons. In 2011. China and India alone will be responsible for half the increase. At Kyoto. In the World Energy Outlook from 2007. To achieve this goal. 500-ton Giants. transfers the torque. come from external suppliers in Denmark. whose top is folded up at either side. is used to transport them along with the nacelles and rotor blades to an offshore site. From 2000 to 2030. and will be responsible for 84 percent of the increase in consumption between 2005 and 2030. And that would represent an important contribution to achieving the Bali targets. generates strength. 1 Mtoe = 1 million tons oil equivalent = 41.Renewable Energy | Wind Turbines Before installation at sea (bottom). a hobby sailor. As a result. “In October 2009. offering a view of the interior. some 1. From a drawer he produces a chronology of wind power technology and places it on his desk. Spring 2007.000 Millions of tons (Mtoe) Carbon dioxide emissions resulting from combustion of energy carriers Gas Coal Oil 41. On the left are the huge steel nose caps.000 Sales in millions of US$ Average growth rate (2005 – 2011) between 10 and 13% per year Global demand for primary energy Actual and forecast figures Renewable energy Nuclear energy Gas Coal Oil 15.000 with the know-how to build fully functional wind turbines. which are up to 120 meters in height. “The first wind turbines we built in the early ‘80s had an output of only 22 kilowatts. This project consists of two adjacent windfarms about five kilometer off the Lincolnshire coast. Stiesdal’s eyes shine with enthusiasm. In fact.000 10. Based on these predicted increases. Although many pilot projects along these lines already exist (pp. | Facts and Forecasts Why Renewable Energy is Needed Predicted Energy Demand and CO2 Emissions Source: IEA 2007. before long the rotor blades on our turbines may be longer than 60 meters. $15 billion was accounted for by developing and emerging markets. the smaller plants still account for around 80 percent of our business.100. Once in the hall. the white nacelle of the 3. the more complicated it becomes. Clear political and technical measures are necessary to reduce CO2 emissions.” Sebastian Webel 17. “Recently we completed one of the world’s largest offshore-projects — the Lynn and Inner Dowsing facilities for Great Britain. water. At 2. $71 billion was invested in renewable energy in 2006. industry.6-megawatt turbine.688 8. and Korea.” says Stiesdal with typical understatement. our modern plants produce more than a hundred times as much power. renewable energy sales in Europe alone are likely to reach almost $18 billion. Above all.000 18. they have an installed capacity of 194 megawatts and are expected to provide enough electrical power to meet the enough energy to supply my home town of Odense and its 185. The various components for the towers.” Although it’s good weather outside — in the Danish sense — Stiesdal is evidently content to remain in his cozy office. to the generator. the equivalent figure is 128 GW. Beijing has introduced other economic incentives to promote renewable energy. is to be boosted from 1 GW to 30 GW between the end of 2005 and 2020. as if it were a small house. when the Kyoto Protocol expires. Fossil fuels will continue to be the key source of primary energy. The agreement was planned to be ready for signing at the Copenhagen conference in December 2009 and become legally binding by 2012. Together. the International Energy Agency (IEA) forecast that global consumption of energy will rise by over 50 percent by 2030 if current policies are maintained. in turn. the energy produced by all of the plants using CO2 capture and storage (CCS) technologies will still account for less than three percent of the energy generated worldwide by 2020. the number of installed Siemens turbines worldwide exceeded 8. Wind power. Today. the IEA believes that the proportion of CCS plants could rise to 20 percent by 2030 and to 37 percent by 2050.” he says. It might look simple and easy to understand. its motion is transmitted via the drive shaft to the gear unit. for example. which will later adorn the turbine housing. India.” Stiesdal.755 20. 3.900 40. they have a capacity of almost 9.3megawatt turbine like this contains many levels of processors and electronics. and four meters in height. it is also bigger. Germany. China and The first wind turbines produced 22 kilowatts — that’s less than one hundredth of today’s output. Since then output has doubled around once every four years. This. That was 43 percent more than the equivalent figure for 2005.6 megawatts. by 2030. there is still some way to go before these technologies can become widely used. each containing a 2. the U. Together. p. In this case.6-megawatt turbine is unmistakable. The result is electrical energy.9 billion in 2013. According to a forecast made by the IPCC (UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) in 2005.000 16. By 2020. which is approximately 36 billion kilowatt hours. four meters in width. which is off the southern coast of the fourth-biggest Danish island Lolland. Of that sum. Our 165 MW Nysted offshore wind farm. According to the China’s 11th five-year plan. “But we’re already working on even bigger ones. 187 countries agreed on the key points of a new climate protection agreement at the World Climate Conference in Bali in December 2007. 40). Hydroelectricity contributes between 15 and 18 percent.700 14. On our way to inspect this giant.” he says. most of which run on hard coal. That’s enough to produce 25 billion kilowatt hours – around 70 percent of Denmark’s electricity consumption. By 2020. points out that a system of this order of magnitude requires much more than just mechanical parts. photovoltaics will probably even outpace wind power to become the fastestgrowing energy source in China.000 homes. all the components for the India consume 45 percent of all coal used globally. and wind energy much less. Once the rotor begins turning. nuclear energy about one percent. E conomic development and population growth in Environmental engineering continues to grow. In the future. China’s hydropower potential is greater than that of any other country.8 GW is expected to be installed in the form of photovoltaic generators. the use of regenerative energy will expand — particularly in countries such as China. These include coal gasification.000 Millions of tons 30. We approach one of the rounded structures. and a final endurance test (left). depending on the wind farm’s location. That’s nearly three times the 2001 level. we cross the storage area.000 0 1990 2005 2015 2030 0 1990 2005 2015 2030 0 2001 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 2011 Data is based on the International Energy Agency’s “Business as usual” scenario. this situation is expected to change as follows: by 2010. before entering a giant hall where turbines are produced. 26 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2007 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 27 . which varies depending on wind wind turbines are neatly stacked. Aside from tax breaks and sponsorship. around half of which powers households in outlying regions. today. Frost & Sullivan anticipates that sales in the regenerative energy market will increase from $6. That’s where the rotor and its three blades will be mounted from the outside. Here. Another way of generating power in a climate-friendly manner involves technologies for efficiently separating CO2. it is angular in shape. combustion with pure oxygen and CO2 separation from flue-gas.S. and on the right the gigantic rotor hubs. The photovoltaic market is also growing by the end of 2006. At 676 GW. in the middle the machine nacelles.000 2.000 4. street lighting and everything. “Everything’s bigger in this turbine. but the closer you look at it. 20 percent — 290 gigawatts (GW) — should be produced by water alone. 83). The innards of the turbine are reached via a ladder.000 10.000 10. it had reached 65 megawatts. which also enjoys considerable potential. the industrial countries are to provide more climate-friendly and energy-efficient technology to developing countries. Denmark experienced a boom that has continued to this day. To ensure that greenhouse gas emissions will fall despite these developments.3-megawatt machine.” says Frost & Sullivan research analyst Linda Yan. “By 2013.” This applies all the more so to the top-of-therange. “Today a 2. Unlike its smaller relative.000 6.600 megawatts. 2005 5. At least for now. Measuring some 13 meters in length.” Stiesdal points to a large map of Europe. and nuclear energy should collectively account for 38 percent of the country’s energy production.000 inhabitants. east of Skegness. The blades from Aalborg are delivered straight to the site of installation. A specially designed ship.000 12. Henrik Stiesdal (right) makes sure that everything is perfect — including turbine assembly (center). including households.
In fact. for example. it will be consuming 6.6 billion per year in energy projects. there is hope. China also has a system similar to the one in Germany that requires energy suppliers to purchase ecologically-produced electricity at a fixed price. However. The World A col. for example. Says Opitz: “It will be some time before the world can stop using big power plants. That isn’t good news for the climate. Bank invests $3. Some countries have made progress.” Jeanne Rubner Interview conducted in Spring. Ministry of Renewable Energy. It’s true that the industrialized Renewable Energy for Developing Countries The boom in renewable energy sources is benefiting developing countries. Siemens subsidiary Osram has become the world’s first lighting systems manufacturer to replace millions of light bulbs in Africa and Asia with energy-saving lamps. In terms of per capita GDP. China will play a key role in pushing up CO2 emissions worldwide.000 power plants) between 2006 and 2020 will result in a 30 percent shortfall. especially in remote areas not connected to power grids. but large. is the director of the Research Center for International Environmental Policy (RCIEP). electricity is still scarce in Africa. the company will receive CO2 certificates to help finance the project (see p.7 billion tons of HCU by 2020. It’s also clear that the global climate problem cannot be solved by micro power plants or distributed solar cell facilities alone. for example. Small solar power units and environmentally-friendly vegetable oil stoves (below) can help to mitigate the effects of poverty. many people know about alternative energy sources. That’s three to five times today’s figure — a huge increase. With this in mind. The Capgemini consulting firm. Cabraal warns. China may wind up being wealthier than Germany is by 2020 or 2030. thereby eliminating the need for a diesel generator. How big is China’s appetite for energy? Oberheitmann: China’s current primary energy consumption is 2. A mission in Tanzania. which is around 6. land masses of Africa and Asia. In India..1 billion tons of CO2 per year. If drastic measures aren’t taken. as technological advances have made “eco-electricity” more affordable.8 to 11. Power plants and transmission lines are expensive. China currently requires 3.Renewable Energy | Renewable Resources | Interview Oberheitmann As indicated by this satellite image. Such a reduction of poverty was one of the “Millennium Development Goals” set by the United Nations at the turn of the century. Does China need to undergo the industrial revolution process as we know it in the West? Can’t it start using environmentally friendly energy sources now? Oberheitmann: Yes and no. China is expected to surpass the U.4 billion tons of hard coal units (HCU). His activities at RCIEP focus on a program sponsored by the GTZ technical cooperation organization that seeks to develop practical solutions to problems associated with climate protection in developing countries. in total energy consumption. with some stages being skipped. In China (right) much of the economy is fueled by cheap coal. the difference is not as great in terms of purchasing power parity. Andreas Oberheitmann.. Some 500 million people south of the Sahara live without electricity — that’s nearly one-third of the 1. now generates electricity with a hybrid facility consisting of solar cells and an engine that runs on oil made from the local jatropha bush. 2008.5 times more energy than the global average to generate one euro’s worth of GDP. unfortunately. Toward the End of 2007 the World Bank launched the “Lighting Africa” initiative. because the renminbi is significantly undervalued at the moment. given purchasing power parity. For example. It’s a massive challenge.6 billion people who still heat with wood and use kerosene lamps for light. the International Energy Agency estimates that expanding electrification to an extent that would halve the number of people living in poverty worldwide would cost around $16 billion a year for the next ten years. half of which focus on tapping renewable sources and improving energy efficiency. Oberheitmann: That’s right. There are two reasons for this. History is repeating itself — but at a much faster pace. China is thus second only to the U. China already emits 6. and that figure will climb by ten billion tons by 2020. In line with the Kyoto ProtoStill. 107). as well as a guest professor at Tsinghua University in Beijing. What will per capita consumption be like? Oberheitmann: Our energy demand model projects that in 2020 each Chinese citizen will Why China Needs and Wants to Conserve Energy Economist and China expert Prof. which corresponds to about 16 percent of global consumption. Still.S. India is already fifth in the world when it comes to installed wind power output. the green energy revolution will require a huge amount of technological expertise and planning. Africa is sparsely populated and it lacks electricity. Still. Oberheitmann previously worked at the RWI economic research institute in Essen. The goal of the Chinese government is to increase the share of energy produced from renewable resources from the current eight percent to 15 percent by 2020. frica is dark when seen from space — at least at night compared to Europe and North America. we believe it will take many years for China to achieve the level of energy efficiency now common among countries like Germany. This awareness is due to the fact that the energy shortage caused by the oil crisis of the 1970s led the government to establish a Ministry of New and Renewable Energy. World Bank energy expert Amil Cabraal says that emerging markets are inspired by Europe’s extensive investment in renewable energy sources and the EU’s plans to meet 20 percent of its requirements with environmentally friendly power and heat by 2020. It is also leading to environmental projects in large emerging markets such as India and China. It’s far from being achieved — and sharply rising prices for fossil raw materials haven’t done anything to help. 45. within the next two years as the number one producer of CO2 emissions. and mistakes are easily made. the country now plans to meet 10 percent of its electricity needs with power from alternative sources by 2012. and depending on how its gross domestic product (GDP) develops. consume an amount of energy equal to that used by the average German today. That’s an argument to get China to sign up to environmental protection. claims that Beijing’s plans to increase China’s capacity by 950 gigawatts (or 1. The goal of the initiative is to provide up to 250 million people in Sub-Saharan Africa with access to electrical lighting.4 tons of HCU.S. especially on the poor. Lack of lighting is one reason why millions of children in Africa can’t study at night. 28 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 29 . even though one out of three Indians lives without electricity.
We’re now searching for ways to achieve sustainable development. We then installed the technology in different vehicles from manufacturers such as Volkswagen. and that the company continues to lead the way in these areas. Interview conducted by Jeanne Rubner. which is why its current Five-Year Plan contains ambitious goals such as reducing specific energy consumption per unit of GDP by 20 percent between now and 2010. is still unable to keep up with such processes from either a strategic or a financial perspective. the government will discontinue its involvement. because in order to solve the problems. on the other hand. although they also power small diesel generators. We joined the WTO in 2001.000 megawatts. operates more efficiently and cleanly… Wan: That’s correct. of course. In remote areas. has an efficiency rating of 45 percent — a top value for a steam power plant. 57. however. In 2004. it invests at an early stage in inno- vations and then brings its products to market worldwide. SAIC (Shanghai Automotive Industry Cooperation). After all. which will be able to supply 5. What types of partnerships need to be formed to enable the efficient use of such technologies in China? Wan: Environmental protection is an issue that everyone around the globe needs to address. Around 20 fuel cell passenger cars and about ten fuel cell buses will be used at the Olympic site. The company has developed its own strategy for success. China is the world’s leading manufacturer of solar cells. We’ve made a lot of progress over the last five years in this regard. it also creates value. In 1990 he received a PhD from the Clausthal University of Technology in Germany. Just how advanced are fuel cell vehicles in China? Wan: We finished building our fourth generation at the beginning of this year. All of these vehicles are the result of Chinese research projects that we launched five to seven years ago — and now we’ll be seeing the technology used for the first time in real applications. the country is introducing measures that will also improve energy security. working initially in the Vehicle Development department and later serving on the Planning Committee. This progress has led to many positive things — but it’s also created problems in terms of energy security. and Chery. the government will simply create favorable conditions for its introduction and then let the market do the rest. which is why the government needs to fund its development. slag can be processed into construction materials. Health care-related research is also important. after which he joined Audi in Ingolstadt. In addition. environmental protection. Residual heat from steel production. At the end of 2000 Wan returned to Tongji University to coordinate a nationwide research program for the development of electric vehicles and hydrogen technology. China itself has to become innovative through its own power. In response. the more money and energy we can all save. and it will provide investment accordingly. What key technologies are being pushed the most in China today? Wan: We’re focusing on several different areas. China will account for a major share of future emissions. we need to be innovative. Siemens thus has a lot of market potential. The Chinese put a new coal-fired power plant into operation every few days. China must install between 60 and 100 gigawatts of new power generation capacity each year. More than 70 percent of the new facilities in China are coal-fired plants. This view is also reflected in the long-term development plan we published in 2006. and we’ve also signed international agreements and established a legal system for dealing with these matters. we spread out the technology. China has achieved very great economic successes since opening up to the West. we’re conducting extensive basic research into forward-looking technologies such as nanotechnology. left their cars home for one day. which is relatively young. When products developed in such a manner are ready for the market. The situation with regard to solar power could change over the long term. and we therefore continue to work hard on further improving our standards. Interview conducted by Bernhard Bartsch. China is also building the world’s highest-capacity direct current transmission line. Chinese companies need to understand that the protection of foreign technologies also guarantees the protection of their own new developments. The government coordinated cooperation between experts from universities. There’s a feeling China’s Road to Sustainable Development Prof. Our main task at the Ministry of Science and Technology is therefore to support all activities that promote sustainability. One way we do this is by explaining to people what could be achieved if everyone turned up their air conditioning thermostat one degree. I think this type of cooperation is our great strength. The Chinese government has traditionally played a major role in technological developments in the country. it’s not enough to have scientists addressing the problems we face. In general.S. the most important of which are new forms of power generation such as clean coal systems and renewable wind and solar energy. for example. and also includes measures for getting the public involved in the process. Again: it’s crucial to get the entire population involved in these issues. Numerous legal proceedings have been carried out and many court rulings have been made that protect intellectual property in China. and research institutes together. However. The technology here is not yet ready for the market. Let’s look at fuel cell vehicles again. To get it. The four-gigawatt Huaneng Yuhuan power facility. photovoltaic systems are used mostly as a substitute for biomass. Industry plays a key role in this regard. This not only eases the strain on the environment and conserves energy. and the situation will improve even further over the next five. China both needs and wants to conserve energy. you’ve been China’s Minister of Science and Technology for half a year now. China’s people need to understand the importance of sustainable development. Tibet uses a lot of hydro power. technological. China’s government is aware of all this. and it’s well on the way to industrialization. We’re also working on environmental protection and information technology systems. he was named president of his alma mater. China’s industry. That’s nearly the equivalent of Germany’s current total capacity. and applications research. Wan received a Master’s degree in automotive engineering at Tongji University in Shanghai. for example. Can China also make greater use of distributed energy sources such as solar cells and wind turbines? Oberheitmann: Such an approach is good for remote areas not linked to the power grid. Chinese industry is also becoming a driving force behind innovation. Its economy is now growing at ten percent a year. Photovoltaic power isn’t usually channeled into the public grid. from biotechnologies and pharmaceuticals to new diagnostic techniques and the development of various types of medical equipment. Professor Wan. research centers. for example. What is China doing to correct this? Wan: China has made a major effort to address this issue over the last few years. We know that Siemens is a worldwide leader in environmental protection and the optimization of industrial processes. has been China’s Minister of Science and Technology since April 2007. we sensitize people to the fact that everyone can contribute to environmental protection and help stop climate change. And China has produced results. 2007. What role do technological developments play in overcoming the challenges China faces? Wan: A huge role. it’s important to make the technologies that are already being used in the industrialized nations affordable to developing countries like China. Wan Gang. and also worked as a manager at a German automaker — so you’re familiar with the respective strengths and weaknesses of the East and West. Finally. Now. You yourself spent many years doing research at a German university. Modern equipment. We will be presenting these hydrogen-fuel vehicles at the 29th Summer Olympics next year in Beijing. We also know that protection of intellectual property is one of the fundamental conditions for establishing an innovation-focused society. the first developing country to draw up a government concept for addressing climate change. and the top speed is 150 kilometers per hour. people will only be motivated to develop innovations if they’re certain these will be protected. and climate change. and solar-thermal facilities for hot water can be found throughout the country. Although photovoltaic systems are still often very expensive. How do you plan to do that? Wan: At the end of May 2007 China became that reality still doesn’t correspond to officially stated intentions here. Interview conducted in Fall. in those situations where a particular technology can soon be launched on the market. and combining technologies to create closed cycles. How would you compare conditions in the two societies? Wan: Europe’s strength — and the strength of Germany in particular — lies in the ability of its industries to develop many products on their own. Siemens offers a good example of this. being an innovative country doesn’t necessarily mean doing everything yourself or reinventing things. One aspect that is of great concern to international companies is the protection of intellectual property. and the automotive industry here in order to develop key components and drive systems. This concept focuses on fundamental. However. which of course produce CO2emissions. but the government also addresses environmental issues… Oberheitmann: Economic growth requires energy. especially when it comes to bringing companies. China is seeking to become an innovation-focused country over the next ten to 15 years. This realization will ultimately have a greater impact than tougher laws. The more these technologies are utilized. along with 50 battery-powered electric buses and another 300 batterypowered small cars. What role would you like to see each of them play in the future? Wan: The government will support those things it deems important. for example. the country plans to limit new residential construction in large cities to buildings that require 65 percent less energy than the level required by today’s standard. which is obviously a challenge not only for China but also for all humanity. if oil prices increase dramatically. We’re now starting to do such things in China. In doing so. It now takes one of our fuel cell vehicles less than 15 seconds to accelerate to 100 kilometers per hour. China’s energy policy seems inconsistent at times. since outdated machines in factories can cause significant environmental damage that seriously endangers nature and human health. In this way. That’s why government support is so important. At the same time. We know we still need to do more. Environmental protection also involves making industrial processes more efficient. can be converted to electricity. Still. and each of us has to do what he or she can to help. and cooling water can be purified. Investments are also being made in district heating systems. Obviously its energy consumption can’t grow at the same pace. However. Take fuel cell vehicles. What challenges does China face in these fields? Wan: You have to look at things from two different perspectives. Technology transfer also furthers development and market expansion. 30 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2007 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2007 31 . accounting for around 27 percent and China only 8 percent. used environmentally friendly detergents etc. improving process planning.Renewable Energy | Interview Wan Gang countries have largely produced the CO2 that’s accumulated in the atmosphere to date — with the U. universities.
The technologies needed to accomplish this goal are available now. the remaining energy is heat. The swimming windmill is located 12 Kilometers off the southwest coast of Norway at a depth of about 220 meters. The one-piece rotor blades are extremely robust and up to 90-percent recyclable.in International Energy Agency IEA: www. which corresponds to around six percent of total primary energy use in Germany. by 2030 the quantity of CO2 emitted due to increased use of fossil fuels would be double that of 1990.rciep. “On the contrary. Thomas Nussbaumer. That’s the goal of the Desertec Industrial Initiative. which is roughly more than 40 times the level of CO2 that Siemens itself produces. wind. Austria.” says Dr. says Prof. why China needs and wants to conserve energy. “The edible portions of plants would be used for food and animal feed production. (p. the SIPAPER Reject Power facility is perfect for us. bio-energy production could cover onethird of global energy requirements. The water content during this process can be up to 40 percent. he cites the negative results associated with first-generation agrofuels made from corn. which is particularly suitable for burning damp biomass made up of different parts. The RBB Böblingen energy cooperative collects about 16.org In 2008 Siemens for the first time documented its complete Environmental Portfolio. we can expect the biomass boom to continue throughout Europe and around the world for the coming years at least. Fossil fuels will continue to be the key source of primary energy. The technology. Solar-thermally produced electricity is expected to be competitive in about 15 years. 94). however.000 households. By 2050. p. In any case. the global consumption of primary energy will rise by 55% between 2005 and 2030 if current policies are maintained. rapeseed. because of the combustion involved. (p. even when the fire within reaches 950 degrees Celsius.Renewable Energy | Biomass A process developed by Siemens makes it possible to convert inhomogeneous and damp sieve residues from wood chip production into electricity and heat. and in 2009 amounted to €23 billion: much more than any competitor. For instance. This setup makes for a much better distribution of the particles and thus more effective combustion. Germany.” Kaltschmitt explains.” says Schwarz. Martin Kaltschmitt of the Biomass Research Center (DBFZ) in Leipzig.org Research Center for International Environmental Policy China. one can expect the Biomass boom to continue throughout Europe and around the world for the coming years. Martin Kaltschmitt of the Biomass Research Center in Leipzig. which lists all products and solutions that help protect the environment and battle climate change. The facility's tower. Germany. which would necessitate a specialized combustion procedure. In the same period of time. Andreas Oberheitmann explains. nuclear energy and natural gas. The individual components weigh dozens of tons and must function flawlessly under rough North Sea conditions for 20 years.” says Manfred Haselgrübler. China’s Minister of Science and Technology Wan Gang describes his country’s road to sustainable development.” says Dr. soy. according to the Copernicus Institute in Utrecht. For this reason the BRIC states are increasingly resorting to energy sources involving low CO2 emission and renewable sources such as wind. The answer came in the form of a wheel that flings the particles at high speeds into the furnace chamber. can enjoy impressive efficiency. from solar thermal plants that produce power from sunlight in Spain and California to high-voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission lines. However. believes such a development could exacerbate hunger in the Third World.desertec. The Böblingen biomass plant marks the beginning of what will be a series of applications. 20) LINKS: Desertec Foundation: www. 14) Siemens built the world’s largest offshore wind farm 30 kilometers off the coast of Denmark.” Schwarz says. as they were simply too inhomogeneous and damp. who adds that the required technical adaptations would not be all that difficult to implement. where it produces heat and electricity for the factory’s own use. It’s possible that bio-energy production could cover one-third of global energy requirements by 2050. while the rest would be put to work in energy production. By 2050. largely untapped potential. Kaltschmitt says. These are chopped into chips that are then used as fuel for cogeneration plants and woodfired heating systems. a technology product manager at the Siemens Industry Solutions Division in Erlangen. According to the DBFZ. burning coarse colza meal is also 32 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 33 .” Urs Fitze In Brief According to the International Energy Agency IEA. Its furnace chamber looks like a giant pizza oven whose vaulted interior is lined with fire bricks and is additionally insulated by half a meter of O concrete. Hans Müller-Steinhagen of the German Aerospace Center in an interview. “This form of waste recycling cuts the factory’s primary energy use by up to a third. ur little toy” is how engineers at the residual waste cogeneration plant in Böblingen.” he says. Siemens has additionaly built the world’s first floating wind turbine. 38% as electricity. 15 to 20 percent of Europe’s energy needs could be satisfied by solar and wind power from North Africa and the Middle East. Netherlands. which has a thermal output of five megawatts. The process makes it possible to convert inhomogenous and damp sieve residues from wood chip production into electricity and heat with a high degree of efficiency. According to Dr. “Basically. as well as the method Siemens used to calculate the savings. which is channeled into the plant’s existing district heating network. which can transmit electricity over long distances with low losses. and 19% transport). However.tsinghua. is itself a small power plant. Together with Statoil Hydro. “Our capacity would also preclude burning this material at our cogeneration plant. more than 30 biomass power plants that use scrap wood or forest wood went on line in Germany in 2007 alone. To support his argument. RCIEP: www. such as Siemens’ cogeneration plant in Böblingen. “That figure could be almost doubled if all existing technological potential were to be harnessed. But the tiny particles of waste produced during paper production couldn’t be effectively burned. But Nussbaumer admits that the potential to expand agricultural production in developing countries is still high. Indeed. (p. “When we say toy. The list accounts for more than 25 percent of the company’s sales.000 tons of waste is burned here each year in order to produce electricity and heat. Economist and China expert Prof. The outside temperature thus remains hand-hot. which was originally developed by Siemens’ Industry Sector for the paper industry (see Pictures of the Future. Larger systems are better served by conventional power plants that use either reciprocating grates or a constant air flow. The development of biogas facilities has been even more dramatic. The 91 turbines can pump around 210 Megawatts of electrical power into the network – enough to supply over 136.” says plant manager Guido Bauernfeind.” Bauernfeind added.000 tons of sieve residues from clipping and forest thinning work each year. This would require the exploitation of around one-fifth of arable land. being considered. Reject Power manager in Linz.” The key to efficient combustion involves determining the optimal fuel-air mixture — control is fully automatic. In terms of technology and logistics it’s a formidable challenge. They also have a much lower calorific value. China’s eleventh five-year plan states that by 2010. It also eliminates the danger of slag buildup. Siemens customers reduced their carbon dioxide emissions by 210 million metric tons. An 800-kilowatt generator delivers electricity to the grid. “is ideal for medium-sized biomass facilities generating five to 25 megawatts. refer to their 20-meter tower. Spring 2007. a professor of Bio-energy at Lucerne University of Applied Arts and Sciences in Switzerland. sun and biomass.iea. 8) Siemens has developed a new technology for biomass energy production. we aren’t being derogatory. it either avoids waste or converts it into energy. which is crammed into a hall located next to a residual waste and slag bunker. (p. Biomass Boom. The engineers are used to large numbers — over 150. “Ideally. as they would turn into slag after combustion and clog the furnace grates in large power plants. and a total of more than 210 such facilities are currently operating in the country. It is also leading to environmental projects in large emerging markets such as India and China. Up until a few years ago. 32) The boom in renewable energy sources is benefiting developing countries. Today. 28) Flaming Scrap A technology developed by Siemens makes it possible to convert biomass waste into energy with a high degree of efficiency. 38% of the country’s power is to come from water. But smaller facilities. (p. The most interesting markets for the exploitation of biomass waste at the moment are in the European Union — especially in Germany and in the Eastern European EU member states — as well as in Brazil and Indonesia. Energy production in 2007 was 828 petajoules (43% as heat.” One reason for this is that since September 2008 another type of raw material has also been converted to energy here — garden and forest scrap that has fallen through the facility’s sieves. A solution was offered by SIPAPER Reject Power technology. Independent auditing company Pricewaterhouse Coopers regularly confirmes the validity of the Siemens Environmental Portfolio and the savings it has generated. “SIPAPER Reject Power offers great potential for exploiting biomass. “Biomass harbors huge. especially in remote areas not connected to power grids. Hermann Schwarz. In an interview with Pictures of the Future. what we always need is a fuel with a certain type of particle size distribution — but we create that ourselves when we process it. “Organic waste from beer production would also be a possibility. The pieces that fall through the sieves are too small for this. whose founder companies include Siemens. the Böblingen facility has an energy yield of 85 percent. which is clad in silvery sheet metal. water. The first SIPAPER Reject Power facility entered service nearly four years ago at a paper mill in Austria. and sugar cane. the paper industry disposed of its waste in landfills.
who heads the International Energy Agency (IEA) in Paris. in particular. there was the added problem that the Federal Reserve Bank — through its cheap-money policy — essentially transferred the dot-com bubble to the mortgage bubble.” says environmental expert Prof. | Interview Edenhofer We’re currently struggling with two crises at once — the economic crisis and the climate crisis. “the Chinese are on their toes. And in the climate crisis.” he adds. “However. he will lead Working Group III of the IPCC.Pictures of the Future | Economic Crisis and Opportunities Investments in clean technologies — from efficient and renewable power generation and transmission to green buildings and CO2 capture and sequestration — can help overcome the economic crisis. a national emissions trading system will help cut the U. Is that just a coincidence. 48.S. The global recession demands government intervention. All of that destroyed the foundations of the economy. That way.” says Prof. in the first three quarters of 2008 alone. First. an agreement among nations that emissions of greenhouse gases must be cut by 50 percent below 1990 levels by 2050. In addition. or do you see parallels? Edenhofer: There definitely is a parallel. A good ten percent of the U. American venture capital firms invested $4. That view is shared by Nobuo Tanaka.S.” he says. All of this makes a great deal of economic sense because these measures will reduce dependence on energy imports and cut associated costs by several billion dollars per year — steps that will pay ever-increasing dividends as the world economy regains momentum and oil prices resume their ascent. Ottmar Edenhofer. and they’ve made energy efficiency a national objective. For the next seven years. why not promote renewable energies?” he asked at the World Economic Forum in Davos. In the long term.’s greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by 2050. at least until the economy rebounds. the new Administration is rethinking environmental issues.3 billion in clean technology companies. Yet investments in greater sustainability benefit not only environmental protection but also the health of economies. at least five million green collar jobs are expected to be created in these and other areas. Policy-makers want a new regulatory framework for the global financial market. chief economist of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) in an interview with Pictures of the Future. which deals with measures to stem climate change. “If governments are spending money on economic stimulus packages. Is climate protection a luxury for better times? “No. we’re in the midst of destroying the foundations of our existence. he has been one of the chairmen of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). “Anyone who claims it is doesn’t understand the fundamentals of economics. For the U. What regulations would they have to establish to ensure better treatment of the climate? Edenhofer: More than anything else. Interview conducted in Spring. Why Climate Protection Isn’t Optional Prof. France. Such investments support the economy in the short term and are also sustainable.S. so that it wasn’t possible Engines of Tomorrow’s Growth As times get tougher. In terms of private investment.. T “In the short term. Were people too greedy? Edenhofer: Maybe. “Low prices are encouraging waste. studied economics and philosophy and is deputy director and chief economist of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. and on the political instruments that are used to shape climate-protection and energy policy. too. Switzerland. 2009. we need a global emissions cap and trade system with two basic prerequisites.” Some politicians share this view and would like to suspend those climateprotection programs that are already agreed on. His “New Energy for America” plan intends to put a million hybrid cars on American roads by 2015 and ensure that the United States gets one fourth of its electricity from renewable sources by 2025. In Germany. around $83 billion — will be invested in the expansion and modernization of the country’s energy infrastructure. newspapers are running headlines like “Climate Protection on Hold” and “Climate Protection at Risk. the banking sector destroyed the foundation of its own business. to stop the greed. The system doesn’t permit any longer-term horizons — that’s the crucial point. President Barack Obama wants to become a global leader in the reduction of greenhouse gases. the falling prices of raw materials and emissions rights are reducing the pressure on nations and companies to find sustainable alternatives for their supply of energy. He is also professor for the Economics of Climate Change at Berlin Technical University.” In the U. Emissions trading limits CO2 where prevention is most cost-effec- hese are difficult times for the climate. temptation is mounting to cut costs and relax standards in the fight against global warming. they promote the spread of new technologies. there’s an 80 percent probability that global warming will be limited to two degrees Celsius. climate protection programs stimulate the economy.” he says. Christian Buck 34 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 35 . The economic crisis is dominating the political agenda and crowding out discussion of greenhouse gases and energy efficiency. Ottmar Edenhofer. but a more important factor was that the banking sector worldwide was improperly regulated. Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker in an interview with Pictures of the Future. He believes that some countries are now approaching the matter with reduced urgency. And with investments in the fields of renewable energy and energy efficiency expected to reach $150 billion over the next ten years. Is human short-sightedness the source of both crises? Edenhofer: I think it would be more correct to call it institutional short-sightedness.S. Tanaka pointed out. Since September 2008. Sustainability can be formulated as an imperative: Act in such a way that you don’t destroy the foundations that enable you to act in the long run! In the financial crisis. At the moment. I think it’s naive to believe the problem can be cured just by appealing to people’s sense of ethics. and this can be directed in part toward climate protection.. government’s stimulus package — in other words. Every manager has to satisfy the demands of the capital market and his or her shareholders. Both are crises of sustainability. The emphasis on shareholder value made investors focus on shortterm results. however. Professor Edenhofer is particularly interested in the influence of technological change on the costs and strategies of climate protection.
we should ask not about probabilities. Edenhofer: Exactly. but will also be the ones who suffer most from climate change. where a rise in sea levels could be very dangerous. for example. pollution has been caused mostly by the rich countries — at the rate of 19 tons per person per year in the U. Some states have been involved for years. assuming that key countries. however. are acting pretty sensibly. But the country is more receptive to climate protection than commonly thought. I like to compare our current infrastructure and products with the dinosaurs. Interview by Christian Buck. but prices will be allowed to express the scarcity of goods only when it’s convenient. eat more meat and fly more. we must create an agreement that comprises at least the six countries that produce the most greenhouse gas emissions. Others disagree. the promotion of renewable energies. Edenhofer: China and India are well aware that. not just the electricity sector and energy-intensive industries. they will not only be the largest sources of emissions. we will also need a central bank for climate protection. such as the U. Anyone who claims it is doesn’t understand the fundamentals of economics. five times. a moderate expansion of nuclear energy. two tons per person per year. for example. How do you rate the economic stimulus programs as they relate to climate protection? Weizsäcker: The German government and the U. Today. Environmental protection is therefore not optional. The whole country could become five Weizsäcker: Yes. we can also resolve the allocation conflict much more easily. is that we agree that we have only a limited amount of capacity in the atmosphere for more CO2. What sort of technological progress do we need to achieve a CO2-free economy? Edenhofer: More energy efficiency. On the contrary. and it has to be allocated reasonably fairly.. Now the federal government is following suit. and the development of more advanced nuclear power plants. we can conjure up ten times more light from a kilowatt-hour than just a few years ago. That’s why we need an emissions trading system that sends a clear price signal for CO2 — a signal for every sector that produces greenhouse gases. Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker. where there was always a reason to continue with subsidies. Are you optimistic about the future? Weizsäcker: We’ll manage. Obama is pushing the auto industry toward more efficiency. the system was doomed to fail. and as a member of the German Bundestag for the SPD. Siemens believes that investing in climate protection could promote growth. and India is at 1. In Europe and Japan. for example. That’s a big step in the right direction. How can the BRIC nations be persuaded to take part in this? After all. After its modernization programs. times more energy efficient with simple measures. they still have a lot of catching up to do economically. Edenhofer: We could indeed. For decoupling to occur. That.. Interview by Christian Buck. Environmental considerations can help overcome the disorientation of the economy. Edenhofer: There will continue to be considerable conflict and disagreement about the allocation. I believe that we’re moving toward a new. There are many options here that don’t cost anything and actually generate revenue through energy savings. the country was twice as efficient as Australia or the U. In the last 150 years. because the developing countries also want to take historical emissions into account. Energy and water are scarce. In terms of global emissions trading. China is at two to three tons already. Why Increased Efficiency Will Lead to a More Advanced Civilization Prof. in my view. it will be too late. we’re right in the midst of a global renaissance of coal. By 2050. that’s becoming the rhythm of technological progress. That’s fair in social terms and makes efficiency more profitable.S. in parallel with increasing energy efficiency. these countries need new technologies to cope with their heavy dependence on coal. But the Chinese are on their toes. Will developing countries accept that? After all.Pictures of the Future | Economic Crisis and Opportunities | Interview Weizsäcker tive. we have to achieve a carbon-free global economy. we also need a concept of fairness. Because of the long-term distortion of prices. I see us entering a new epoch of advanced civilization. In that society. In the next ten years. That won’t entail a drop in the quality of life. that’s already understood. That’s where the future lies. could take the lead in creating a transAtlantic carbon market of the kind proposed Interview conducted in Spring. it should be possible to put together a good package — with power plants that capture CO2. In addition. is the responsibility of the climate conference in Copenhagen (Denmark) in December 2009. a fair proposal has been made in this regard. Maybe the chances of developing a sensible response aren’t very high. Now we have to reverse that relationship. and China. because there is no reason why economies should be dependent on increased energy use to grow. possibly even our relationship to the automobile. where only the rich countries could afford environmental protection. The coming society will be more efficient and more elegant than today’s. the rights should be redistributed in such a way that every person on earth has the same right to emissions — for example. Now it seems that this idea is being accepted in the U. That sounds like a huge economic stimulus plan. As a member of the IPCC. If we develop the innovations needed for that. climate protection isn’t optional.5 tons per person. that doesn’t happen. But I think that the global economy can continue to grow at a rate of two to three percent per year. 2009.S. ten times more efficiently. We need to involve these large emerging economies because they can limit CO2 emissions much more cost-effectively than the West can. Obama’s rescue plan for the auto industry puts a lot of emphasis on the environment. as president of the Wuppertal Institute for Climate. Do you expect the U.S. as well. Does that mean that we will have to start living more modestly? Edenhofer: Only if economic growth cannot be decoupled from emissions.. where most power plants already meet a high standard of efficiency. overnight. Such an institution would regulate the market for CO2 certificates and prevent speculative bubbles. to take a leading role in climate protection? Weizsäcker: Obama can’t change the U. Do you think we can extricate ourselves from the economic crisis through climate protection investments? by the EU in January 2009. In this connection.S. They use more energy. Japan showed how to do this in the ‘80s. Investors need a signal that emissions have to continue to fall after 2020. Is higher energy efficiency the key in the fight against climate change? Weizsäcker: Yes. 36 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 37 . Is it realistic to think that the community of nations will agree on an effective plan? Edenhofer: We cannot afford a catastrophe. Environment and Energy. The climate protection discussion involves concepts similar to those in the financial sector. Investors could make long-term plans. longterm Kondratiev wave — with a paradigm shift toward more energy efficiency and the associated innovations and investments. We should learn to use both three times. and especially the end user. and they’ve made energy efficiency a national objective in the Eleventh Five-Year Plan. at the time of the Kyoto Conference in 1997. Most recently. That would be like saying we want to have a market economy. pricing mechanisms will have to set the right incentives — which is what emissions trading is designed to do. it’s about implementing price systems that express a very real scarcity. such as certificates. though. What is more important. Our cars.S. That kind of thinking led to the collapse of the Soviet economy. and eight tons in the EU. Are these systems similar in structure? Edenhofer: Yes. have the courage to adopt a climate-friendly course.S. But as long as energy is cheap. but above all buildings and cars. But there is a sustainability problem here too. We could make energy more expensive in small steps through taxes or emissions certificates. Professor von Weizsäcker was dean of the Donald Bren School for Environmental Science and Management at the University of California in Santa Barbara. China. and many companies are far ahead of the politicians. This would be a signal to India. labor productivity has risen faster than energy productivity. Why does Europe have an edge here? Weizsäcker: In Europe. you have first hand experience with global climate protection politics. Couldn’t that cause countries such as China to become less concerned with energy efficiency? China’s Yuhuan power plant has achieved record efficiency using Siemens turbines. which is then stored. the U. 70. That’s similar to what a central bank does in the financial sector. low prices are encouraging waste again. At some point. is a physicist and biologist. in the future. people earn a good living from environmental protection and energy efficiency. Is this something we can afford only when the economy is strong? Weizsäcker: That’s the impression being given now by some. He has served as a professor at German universities. The focus is on rescuing the credit institutions. The ability of our atmosphere to store CO2 is also a limited asset. In light of that. There might be more car-sharing instead of ownership. Second.S. But in the case of climate protection. If it becomes possible to see and feel climate change. as director of the UN Center for Science and Technology in New York. After that. But when we are confronted by historic challenges. providing twice as much prosperity per kilowatt-hour. We have to distribute emissions rights among countries in an evenhanded way. and others. for example. together with Europe. In short. Raw materials’ prices are falling because of the crisis. Many of their largest cities are located on the coasts. Buildings can be kept warm with a tenth of the heating energy used back then. but about necessities. in other words? Edenhofer: No one should be prevented from exercising more moderation.S. people will use computers that don’t waste energy and are as efficient as the human brain. the capture and storage of CO2. What is important is that we now boost the economy with investments that also make sense for the long term. the problems are mostly caused by the rich. when electricity and gasoline were very expensive. In my view. up to this point. This thinking has its roots in the regulation of pollutant emissions. Habits will change. yes. He is considered a leading force behind the concept of sustainable development. The prospects for this are good. houses and appliances are wasteful and outdated. The economic crisis offers a great opportunity to reverse this course and create jobs at the same time. No new moderation. in my view. At the same time. too. Then it’s fine if energy and water get more expensive. and he wants to spend billions on renewable energies. Is emissions trading working in the areas where it is already established? Edenhofer: We’re not in bad shape in that regard. Emissions will surely fall in the electrical power sector.
and renewable energy sources interact.400 km away. After the sun went down it was usually impossible to play Mahjong. The small village where Jun Yang lives has been connected to the electrical grid for only a few years. Transparent Network Smart meters enable consumers to monitor and manage their power use. gain detailed. An IGCC power plant uses coal to produce climate-friendly energy. utilities can. do you remember what our life was like just a few years ago? Do you recall the days when our little village was still one of the few places in China that wasn’t connected to the electrical network? I’m sure you’ll agree with me that those were literally dark days.Tomorrow’s Power Grids | Scenario 2020 Highlights 44 China’s River of Power Starting in 2010. as the petroleum lamp in your hut was too dim. our Mahjong games W Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 39 . People drive to work in plug-in hybrid cars that are fueled by solar energy. an. for the first time. An HVDC transmission line from Siemens will transport this environmentally-friendly electricity in the most powerful system of its kind anywhere. hydroelectric plants are to supply energy to megacities in southeast China — with power generated 1. 2020. Wind turbines feed electricity into an intelligent network. fluctuations in wind power will have to be balanced by storage systems in order to prevent power grids from being overloaded. 48 54 60 2020 38 Pensioner Yun Jang listens to his nephew explain how China is stilling its hunger for energy. my old friend. He reports on his experiences in a letter to his friend Wan. thus opening the door to significant savings. That’s probably also the reason why you bought yourself a television as soon as we had electricity. and automated building management systems are linked with weather forecasts. even though there was sometimes a greater sense of community. The CO2 New World China. real-time insight into network dynamics. Siemens is investigating how vehicles. Thanks to these digital systems. One option could be gigantic underground hydrogen storage centers. I’ve come to believe that you actually didn’t mind a bit — you’re simply a bad loser. Pensioner Jun Yang has been invited by his nephew to visit the new Ministry of Energy. Ever since then. it generates is stored underground. as mobile electricity storage units. the grid. From Wind to Wheels Electric cars could play a stabilizing role in tomorrow’s power grids. so he’d like to know where the energy that has changed his life comes from. Trapping the Wind In the future.
In 20 years. Grid operators and governments agree on how the challenge should be met. biomass plants. I’m sure you remember my nephew Li. This grid is used for the general distribution of power to population centers or large industrial sites. I can even play it alone. electricity flows at 220 to 380 kilovolts (kV) across hundreds of kilometers from power plants to substations. mini cogeneration plants and much more. In addition to a massive expansion of electricity highways. Instead. it suddenly became comfortably warm and bright — just as it does after I’ve had a good cup of plum wine at your house. But Li assured me that in this case it was due to the building management system. tomorrow’s grids will have to incorporate a growing number of small. “As a result. it’s crazy. According to an Accenture study. but I couldn’t hear the sound of an engine as it came around the corner. so does the instability of the network. the voltage is stepped down again to between six and 30 kV for the medium-voltage grid. In addition. such networks can easily face gridlock. Tens of thousands of vehicles stream along highways from all directions and find their way through a dense network of roads. The situation with our power grid is similar. and he’s the one who gave my wife all of those electrical household appliances. where. electrons have flown relatively smoothly through Europe’s grids. This is expected to reach 4. In 40 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 41 . Uncle Jun. while supply cannot be guaranteed on calm days. When I opened them again I saw Li’s beaming face in front of me.” The low-voltage distribution grid. According to the International Energy Agency. and it automatically adjusts the room temperature and lighting accordingly. You sit all evening in front of that thing. the grids must undergo a fundamental change. When we reached the Ministry. and I felt as though my stomach had stayed on the ground floor with the nice lady in the foyer. it passes through various “road networks” that are separated by substations. The vehicle’s batteries could be recharged by simply plugging the car into a wall socket. old grids can scarcely handle the electricity generated today. For my part. est voltage alternating current lines. some 30 percent of the world’s electricity is expected to come from renewable sources. The solution is to develop an intelligent grid that keeps electricity production and distribution in balance. for instance. he added that it had a small combustion engine that would be used in case of an emergency – such as a charging station failure. the previous flow of power from the transmission to the distribution grid will be reversed in part or for periods of time in many regions.” he said and led me — I was still a bit shaky — into a big room with a gigantic window. As a result. and that’s why we had to boost our efforts to preserve the environment. “That’s really true. I was surprised to hear that our old coal-burning stoves in the village emit more CO2 than the gigantic coal-fired power plant not far from this building. as traffic continues to increase. Needed: Electricity Highways. however. decentralized power producers. Here. Of course I accepted. looking at a world that you don’t understand. Already hopelessly clogged under the best of circumstances. He explained that the car was powered entirely by electricity stored in lithium-ion batteries. incorporating small solar installations on rooftops. dear Wan. so that we can effectively predict how much electricity they will produce. My nephew explained that this brand-new power plant was what they call an IGCC facility. which feeds consumers’ outlets. This is followed by local distribution. is often a total mystery to utilities. They will not only have to integrate large quantities of fluctuating wind and solar power. Unfortunately. However.” According to Weinhold. but instead transforms it into a gas containing hydrogen that then fuels a turbine. The driver seemed to be amused when I asked him if there was something wrong with the engine. sooner or later. every city government must decide whether to expand its transportation infrastructure or face collapse. “By the way. Until now.” Next. CTO of the Siemens Energy Sector. By now.600 terawatt hours (TWh) of electricity in 2006. I at least want to understand the thing that has changed our little world so much. my old friend.” said Li proudly as he pointed to the many wind turbines on the horizon. All it takes is a few fender benders — to say nothing of circumstances such as a subway strike or a snow storm. He’s a very modern person. Because eco-friendly electricity is primarily generated by wind farms. my horizons are so broad that I can no longer see their limits. Ever since then she’s had a lot more free time. Today we already produce a large percentage of our energy in ways that protect the climate. “The level of automation for the system as a whole is very low.Tomorrow’s Power Grids | Scenario 2020 | Trends More and more electricity will be generated in the future. This way. The gas is collected. But as the percentage of electricity generated by renewables grows. “Welcome to our energy management headquarters.” A short time later. Today the figure is only 18 percent. All that saves a lot of energy and reduces carbon dioxide emissions. and that has also made my life much more complicated. in an underground depot that used to be a natural gas reservoir. Li invited me to visit him in the Ministry’s brand-new administration building. These facilities function as traffic lights or railroad switches while also adjusting the electricity before forwarding it to the next grid. Today’s infrastructure is not up to this task. Along the way. my nephew gave me a very unusual present when we parted: Mahjong as a computer game. He thought this would broaden my horizons.” Basically. facilities that generate electricity only from the ocean waves and floating wind turbines that are used on the open sea. There. it can remain for thousands of years without escaping to the surface.S. The batteries. and finally pumped deep into the earth. but he said that the game will also work with a TV. The car came very soon. Li obviously noticed my skeptical look. despite the fact that many of the continent’s power lines are now over 40 years old. have been a thing of the past. Electricity flows on copper “highways” from power plants to centers of demand.300 TWh by 2030. our grid infrastructure is not yet prepared for that. But I’m digressing — pardon me. who is doing well professionally at the Ministry of Energy. there are no lamps in the entire building. “From here we always have a good overview of the country’s entire energy supply. he said. By the way. which doesn’t burn the coal directly. In addition to being able to accommodate a fluctuating supply of wind-generated electricity. the European Union generated roughly 3. there are highly efficient light-emitting diodes.” he said. “A bad storm has just been forecast for our region. he pointed to a message that appeared on the window as though written by a spirit’s hand. removed through pipelines. A friendly receptionist accompanied me to a glass elevator. the energy mix is getting more environmentally friendly. isn’t it? What a lot of effort just to operate your TV and my wife’s washing machine! Incidentally. Electric “gridlock” is a real threat. but also incorporate an increasing number of small. a lot of important information remains concealed. The administration building loomed into the sky. depending on the region. The CO2 is separated out in the process. The earth became smaller so fast that I had to close my eyes. because he laid his hand on my arm reassuringly and said. and I felt a little bit lost in the gigantic entrance hall. “Right now they are not very intelligent. are you doing anything next Sunday evening? Florian Martini otorists who venture into the maze of a major city are part of a larger whole. In the high- M Switching on the Vision Our power grids are facing new challenges. regional power producers. This system is also linked with the weather forecast. She told me my nephew was waiting for me on the 40th floor and pressed a button. “As you know. At any rate. but now we’re also building power plants that don’t need any coal at all — for example.” says Weinhold. Michael Weinhold. as the world’s biggest generator of CO2 emissions. where the voltage is reduced to 110 kV before the electricity is then fed into the what is called the distribution or high-voltage grid. substations reduce the voltage to 230 and 400 volts and send the power into the low-voltage grid. I don’t have a computer. You won’t believe what happens next. such as the actual amount of energy being used by consumers and the condition and efficiency of the line system. says Li. the driver parked the car in a parking lot under a roof equipped with a solar collector and the vehicle was automatically connected to a docking station and to the grid. Gridlock is inevitable. Our warning system recommends that we adapt the wind farm’s performance so that power networks won’t be overloaded. Because it includes hardly any components capable of communication in its present configuration. Wan. Li had said he would send a car to pick me up. up to ten percent of energy disappears from the grid either due to inefficiency or electricity theft without being noticed by power providers. Wan. It all began this morning at the train station. much more energy than can be used is pumped into high voltage network in stormy weather.” says Dr. according to Li. all of the wind turbines are linked via Internet with continuously updated local weather forecasts. They store excess energy from huge wind farms and later return it to the grid when needed. “The generation of electricity will become increasingly decentralized. in particular. are also used as buffers. about ten years ago China passed the U. At just that moment I was catapulted upward. However. But keeping that network flowing is no easy task. he explained.
this has relied on pumped storage power plants.400 kilometers by 2010. “Not only does this make the grid transparent and thus observable. because electricity can be generated ecologically and transmitted very efficiently.” adds Günther. electronic electric meters. German energy utilities are planning to invest roughly €25 billion in smart grid technology by 2020. Florian Martini locally-produced energy marketplaces) project. energy providers and consumers can for the first time record in detail where and how much electricity is being used and fed into the grid.” The advantage is obvious: If electricity consumption is precisely recorded. in which Siemens is also participating. it also makes it easier to monitor and control. “Electricity will draw the world together.S.” she says. flexibly controllable electrical generation and distribution infrastructure. With HVDC technology. but climate change is moving things in a different direction. distribution grid operators. solar. The steadily increasing distances between power generation sites and consumers must also be bridged.e. Desertec project. For example. Traditionally.000 electric cars connected to the grid could make eight gigawatts of power available quickly.” Governments and companies are committing large amounts of money to ensure that this vision becomes reality. for instance. Rusitschka believes that projects like E-DeMa will boost the smart grid’s prospects. Germany.S. As part of the E-DeMa (development and demonstration of ity customers within model regions to an electronic marketplace and link them to energy traders. The project is scheduled for completion in 2012. as described in the The Smart Grid will Optimize Interconnections between Producers and Consumers Smart generation Smart grid ERP Billing Call center CRM etc.” he says. Stability will be crucial to tomorrow’s grid. “Just yesterday the big issue was oil. large cities in some developing nations. One example is smart meters — intelligent. Another component of the smart grid is the “virtual power plant”.” she explains. wind. “This would allow them to bundle their power and sell it in a marketplace that is inaccessible to small suppliers. “With smart metering. Super Grids. Intermediate storage is needed for the excess power fed into the grid by fluctuating energy sources. This lowers electric bills and CO2 emissions. “Among the things we are investigating is how these digital links need to be configured. in 2005 the European Union came up with a concept. In contrast. as much as 50 percent of electricity disappears this way. That would be more than is currently required in Germany. Key components for the power grid of the future are already available and have even been installed on a limited basis in some countries. Weinhold believes that we are currently on the threshold of a new electric age. “In addition. they are a prerequisite for actively participating in electricity markets. As this type of power requires power plants that can begin producing energy quickly. as physics limits the transmission of electrical energy to wires or cables. some 400 kilometers of highvoltage grid needs to be reinforced and an additional 850 kilometers of lines need to be erected by 2015 simply to transmit the wind energy that will be generated in Germany. but will link entire continents. The grid would benefit too. Industrial consumers Smart consumption Solar power Wind power System integrity protection HVDC and FACTS technology Energy management systems (EMS) Substation automation and protection Asset management Distribution management systems (DMS) Distribution automation and protection Meter data management (MDM) Smart meters and demand response Distributed energy resources Electric cars (batteries) Condition monitoring Intelligent buildings Electric cars (batteries) Transmission grid Distribution grid 42 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 43 . Weinhold believes that these electricity highways will not only cross borders in the future.” says Günther. the power can be transmitted over long distances (here an 800 kV transformer).” says Weinhold. what data should be transmitted and how can we obtain useful information from it. Cars as Buffers. “There is also work to be done on the hardware side.” says Eckardt Günther.” According to the German Energy Agency (DENA) study. could be connected to form a virtual network. the price for a kWh of balancing power is much higher than for a kWh of base load power.” he says. “The first larger-scale smart grid solutions could become reality by 2015.” flexible rates can be used to match consumption to supply. As a result. the idea is that small energy producers such as cogeneration plants. In addition to new electricity highways. This is good for the climate. “Smart meters heighten energy use awareness and help to better control it. Risitschka is responsible for developing the information and communication interface between smart meters. “Smart metering is a key technology for the smart grid.” says Weinhold. As part of the EDISON project. “The energy system plus information and communications technology all enter into a symbiosis in the smart grid. testing will begin on the electric cars concept and other solutions in Denmark in 2011.” says Günther. One element of a solution to this problem could be highvoltage direct current (HVDC) transmission. “Consolidated into a virtual power plant and acting as a flexible unit. Base load power is generally provided by the workhorses of power generation — coal-fired or nuclear power plants that run around the clock.” Virtual Networks. at present if more electricity is being consumed than was forecast. Super grids could be used to transport enormous quantities of solar energy from Northern Africa to Europe. and the electronic marketplace. which temporarily store excess energy and later return it to the grid when needed — at a higher price. 200. small plants could make balancing power available and thus help to stabilize the grid. but there is hardly any capacity for further expansion in Central Europe. wind farms will either have to be shut down to prevent them from overloading the grid during periods of overproduction or producers will have to pay someone to take the electricity. who heads the Smart Grid Competence Center at Siemens Energy in Nuremberg. which it called the “smart grid” — a vision of an intelligent. Balancing power is provided in addition to the base load to cover peaks in demand. which is subsidized by the German federal government. Electricity is increasingly becoming an allencompassing energy carrier. the system for meter data management. “We will see the establishment of super grids in regions that can be interconnected across climate and time zones. “We need to greatly expand the number of power lines. Department of Energy. which is capable of transporting large amounts of electricity across thousands of kilometers with low losses. It is abundantly clear to Weinhold that we are moving full speed ahead into a new era. which have previously fed their power into the grid individually and inconsistently. “The technology is available and it works. tomorrow’s grid will need more buffers to stop it from bursting at the seams. One future solution could be electric cars. has provided roughly $4 billion in subsidies for smart grid projects in the U. The system is scheduled to begin transmitting electricity generated at hydroelectric plants with a record voltage of 800 kV across a distance of 1.” Sebnem Rusitschka of Siemens Corporate Technology is also convinced that tomorrow’s grid will have to be smart. The interfaces will connect both private and commercial electric- “In the future.” predicts Weinhold. With a view to heading off impending problems. the production of electricity must be increased. and other participants. Shedding some light on the distribution grid isn’t the only advantage associated with smart meters.Tomorrow’s Power Grids | Trends Most of tomorrow’s electricity will be generated from renewables such as wind. times of day and geographical features to be used to their optimal benefit. The U. and power providers are often unaware of outages — at least until the first complaint is received. But intelligent systems alone will not be enough to manage the large amounts of energy provided by the growing numbers of wind farms or solar-thermal power plants. Siemens is currently building the world’s highest capacity HVDC transmission system in China. hydro or biomass plants. adding that this would allow seasonal changes. electricity highways will not just cross borders but will link entire continents. Here. i.
I The high-voltage overhead lines coming from the hills to the left of the fence are already carrying power.” explains Jürgen Sawatzki. who is in charge of the installation of equipment from Siemens at the site. while workers below toil with spades and wooden wheelbarrows to finish the last of the landscaping. High-voltage direct-current transmission (HVDCT) is not a new invention. deliverance comes. Back then the voltage was a mere 1. the line will transmit at a record 800. over 1. The 1.400 volts. which provide carbon-free power.000 volts. a new HVDCT line is able to transmit 5.Tomorrow’s Power Grids | HVDC Transmission With the help of high-power transistors. rectifier modules. in China. however. China’s River of Power How do you supply five million households with hydroelectric power from a distance of 1. Shenzhen.000 44 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 45 . Hydroelectric generation capacity on the Jinsha River is being expanded. some of which are located as far as several hundred kilometers away. and Hong Kong on China’s southeastern seaboard. a transmission line of this type carried electricity from Miesbach in Bavaria to an electricity exhibition in Munich. The overhead lines arriving from the left of the site are carrying conventional alternating current (AC) that has been generated by hydroelectric plants. That. at long last.400-kilometer transmission line to Guangzhou. From there it will supply five million households in the megacities Guangzhou. Our driver turns in at a blue sign bearing lots of Chinese characters and “800 kV” in Western script and lets us out just beyond a rolling gate. as long ago as 1882. Siemens is building the world’s most powerful such system in China.400 kilometers from Lufeng to Guangzhou. It will carry 5. and smoothing reactors.400 kilometers? The answer is: with high-voltage direct-current transmission. “The HVDCT line in China is the ultimate example of this technology. will carry direct current. The air is alive with a sonorous hum. Fields and herds of water buffalo flash by the car window. It will go into operation in 2010 as a bipolar line transmitting power to Guangzhou in Guangdong province. This will reduce the country’s annual emissions of CO2 by some 33 million metric tons a year. is where the similarities end. however. Gigantic pylons dripping with cables soar into the sky. t takes a jarring ninety-minute ride to cover the distance from the city of Kunming in southwestern China to Lufeng. “That’s from the testing.000 megawatts over the 1. Then. 57 kilometers away. one of the headwaters of the Yangtze.400 kilometers away. The resulting electricity will be transmitted to major cities on China’s southeastern coast by the world’s most powerful HVDCT line. but the shiny new one that crosses the fence to the right and disappears over the mountain is still dead. as the electricity comes from a dozen hydroelectric plants on the Jinsha (“Golden Sand”) River. In front of us is a site measuring around 700 by 300 meters that looks like something from another world.
So whereas Siemens is still responsible for the engineering of the thyristors. A voltage of 800 kV will transmit an alternating current over a distance of 1. The move from 500 kV to 800 kV has already reduced costs over 30 years by one quarter. where workers are installing a power stabilization system onto long poles suspended from the 20-meter-high ceiling — a measure designed to minimize the chances of a short circuit and associated electrical outage even in the event of an earthquake. This drives up the price of such installations. as Vowinkel points out. Profiting from Innovation. Over longer distances. the DC part contains a lot of Siemens know-how. Half of the 48 transformers are of German production. Bernd Müller Plugging into HVDC’s Advantages High-voltage direct-current transmission (HVDCT) is ideal for countries where power has to be transported over long distances. for example. This effect can be compensated for by the use of coils. 87 percent — the equivalent of 400 megawatts less. this is a precaution in the event that one pole should go down. Sawatzki draws a circuit diagram on a piece of cardboard and explains: “The rectifiers and the DC yard are in duplicate. a new world record. Innovations from Siemens include siliconecovered insulators that repel water and provide better insulation when dirty. For both types of transmission. Meanwhile. all of which will be transferred in real time via a fiber optic cable that is laid along the HVDC transmission route. Sawatzki leads us into a hall the size of an aircraft hangar. that’s the output of five large power plants. In the case of undersea cables. Because this current still has a high ripple content. With its compact dimensions. Dietmar Retzmann explains. Their purpose is to link different AC power networks with dissimilar voltages and frequencies by converting alternating current into direct current and then back again. and coils filter out interference signals emanating from the rectifiers in the hall. This is because. as found in any mains-operated electrical appliance. one of Siemens’ top experts on HVDCT. As a rule. gradually ramping up the voltage onscreen. and copper — which are activated optically by means With HVDC. Compared to a 765 kV alternating-current (AC) line of the same length.400-kilometer HVDCT line between the Chinese provinces of Yunnan and Guangdong will transmit at 800. but the dimensions are gigantic here in the DC yard. The forthcoming boom in offshore wind farms will provide a further boost for the HVDCT market. Siemens Energy. sit in the control room. As of May 2011. the screen would show a power of 5. meanwhile.” explains Susanne Vowinkel. The devices look like a stack of huge plant trays and could well have been inspired by the legendary Hanging Gardens of Babylon. HVDCT will save around 36 percent in costs over a 30-year service life. accommodated in an office above the valve hall. which in this case would amount to a loss of 400 megawatts — the output of a mid-sized power plant or 160 wind generators. A number of tests are scheduled for the coming months. this falls to 87 percent. the lower the current. are ideal for transmitting high power in urban environments. All in all. A gate at the Guangzhou receiving station alerts visitors to its world-record transmission voltage. from the award of contract in June 2007 to full commissioning in June 2010. and New Zealand.” The advan- tage here is that one conductor is operated as an 800 kV positive pole and the other as an 800 kV negative pole.” explains Prof. 250 kilometers away. Each tray contains a total of 30 shiny golden cans that are carefully connected in series and wired to control circuits with fiber optic cables. the losses over long distances of a laser beam 50 times a second. It will not be possible. issuing invitations to tender to suppliers. HVDCT has already become the cornerstone of major projects for the future. The 1. however. such as Desertec.000 volts. Here a default reading of “9. the current is inversely proportional to the voltage.” The right side of the screen shows the status of the receiving station in Guangzhou. however. What’s more. where space — the cheapest form of insulation — is usually at a premium. the screed floor is being poured. In the fourth project this share has fallen a bit further. megawatts. and carry 400 megawatts of power. is to stay one step ahead. but such measures are not economical for underwater cables. So-called gas-insulated lines (GILs). India. The left half of a large control screen displays the operating load of the transmission station in Lufeng as “0 megawatts. This occurs so precisely — to within a millionth of a second — that the negative waves of the alternating current are “flipped” so as to create a direct current. 95 percent of the power is transmitted. HVDCT back-to-back links are a special instance of this technology. In another hall right next to the first one. physics dictates that for a fixed amount of power. Regardless of whether power is transmitted as an alternating or a direct current.S. The control room of the transmission station in Lufeng (right). as much as 95 percent of the power reaches the consumer. The HVDCT system in Lufeng is his fourth for network operator China Southern Power Grid. since innovation is continuously advancing the state of the art in this field. Siemens has just landed a major contract in India and tendered bids for further HVDCT projects in China. Bipolar Transmission. the U. thus giving a total of 1. HVDCT has the major advantage over AC transmission that it acts like a firewall. This is designed to push the components to their very limits and reveal any weaknesses before the system enters service. which would require immense compensation for transmission losses. There. as Prof. Eight Siemens engineers. The lines are laid underground in a 50-centimeter pipe filled with a low-pressure gaseous mixture of nitrogen and sulfur hexafluoride. At the same time. The problem is. Know-how from East and West. and customer relations. which they “inject” into the ripples. HVDCT is superior. The name of the game. Yet that doesn’t mean that all the components were made in Germany. In other words. that over long distances the voltage waves at the beginning and the end of the transmission line are shifted relative to one another — the technical phrase here is “phase angle” — and this necessitates the installation of large banks of capacitors every few hundred kilometers for the purposes of series compensation. GILs require little maintenance and they do not deface the landscape. “There’s a lot of new know-how in the 800 kV technology. GILs are between five and ten times more expensive than overhead lines. with AC. both for long-distance transmission and to provide back-to-back links. it next goes to the socalled “DC yard” right behind the valve hall. coming in at around €370 million out of the €1 billion that the system is costing. except that the transmission and receiving stations are on the same site. eventually losing virtually all their power.500 megawatts can be transmitted at 550 kilovolts.Tomorrow’s Power Grids | HVDC Transmission Giant 800 kV transformers were tested in Nuremberg (left) before being shipped to China for installation (center). the goal is to ramp up the voltage as much as possible. where a Siemens-built GIL under the exhibition halls ensures that visitors and sensitive electronic systems are shielded from radiation fields. In the first project with China Southern Power Grid.6 million volts between them.000 megawatts and 600 kilometers upward. Were the station in operation. where it is impossible to build high-voltage overhead lines. thus reducing the energy losses that result from the conductor heating up. engineers are already looking beyond the 800 kV mark. HVDCT is also increasingly being incorporated into synchronous three-phase AC networks. as higher transmission voltages promise even lower line losses. capacitors temporarily store charge. a 250 kV HVDCT line from Siemens will connect the Balearic Islands with the Spanish mainland. the HVDCT link will cut emissions by a further three million metric tons of CO2 a year. All this is standard circuitry. This gas insulates the conductor so well that a power of up to 3. China Southern Power Grid has stipulated that most of the components to be supplied by Siemens must be manufactured in China by subcontractors. AC lines act like huge capacitors that are charged and discharged 50 times a second. When transmitting over long distances. A blackout in one of China’s large coastal cities would be a nightmare. HVDCT becomes financially viable from around 1. “With our power highway in China. Low Losses. for example. Hydropower and HVDCT are cutting China’s CO2 emissions by 33 million metric tons a year. the project will take three years.” says Wolfgang Dehen.000 megawatts as well as a raft of other data from Guangzhou. it is designed to provide flexible and reliable transmission from offshore wind plants.. As a result of these reduced losses. they are used in major cities. GILs become even more attractive economically at higher transmission loads. the power is divided between two conductors in order to minimize transmission losses. Another advantage of GILs is that the metal pipes that encase them block electromagnetic radiation. CEO of would still be significantly higher than with HVDCT. which is being used here for the first time. to build future systems of this kind without Siemens’ know-how. This was an important consideration for the operators of the Palexpo congress center in Geneva. Whereas the AC part of the system was built entirely by Chinese firms. In theory. the higher the voltage. where the direct current will be converted back into alternating current and fed into the public grid. Dietmar Retzmann. while the others were manufactured in China under the supervision of Siemens. it would be possible to build AC transmission lines over similar distances. What’s more. molybdenum. In other words.999 megawatts” is displayed. HVDC PLUS is an innovative system from Siemens that features a new generation of power converter. which will transmit power from North Africa and the Middle East to Europe. Siemens handled 80 percent of the total contract volume. this extra cost become smaller once the costs of land and maintenance for overhead lines are factored into the equation.500 kilometers. these components and all the ancillary equipment are being manufactured under Siemens supervision by two Chinese firms. Inside the tins are thyristors — converter valves made of silicon. The principle is the same as the one governing a normal HVDC transmission system. however. who works at Siemens’ Energy Sector as a commercial project manager in the field of contracts. 46 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 47 . exactly in phase with the current as it switches polarity. the advantages of HVDCT come into play over distances as small as 60 kilometers. automatically halting cascading failures within a network and thus greatly reducing the risk of a major blackout. However. Sawatzki has been in China for ten years now. In terms of construction costs alone. And in spite of such compensation. With AC transmission lines. in the second 60 percent. and in the third 40 percent.
simply increasing the number of pumped-storage power plants isn’t Electric vehicles could serve as mobile and readilyavailable storage devices for electricity. compared to 22 GW at the end of 2007. Germany’s power plant operators coordinate their activities with their counterparts in neighboring countries. this has not stopped some countries from using batteries as a cache facility for the power network. computers and generators. But an abundance of wind power means that conventional power plants have to be ramped down. Other major industrialized countries such as the U. we need to remember that such batteries will be relatively expensive due to their compactness. or rising in the case of oversupply. 33 pumped-storage facilities operate in Germany. As a rule. Experts are therefore looking at ways of storing surplus energy so that it can be converted back into electricity when required. Comparative Energy Stored per Unit of Volume kWh/m3 Pumped-storage power plant1 Compressed air energy storage2 Lead-acid battery NaS battery Lithium-ion battery Hydrogen storage3 0 100 200 300 400 0. Although the amounts of energy involved here are tiny by comparison. and low weight. Such a project would involve more than just laying a long cable to Norway. If not. For the power plants assigned to pro- Germany’s largest pumped-storage power plant is in Goldisthal. which covers heightened demand at peak times — in the evenings. the capital expenditure for doing so would be substantial. could rise to as much as 25 percent (149 TWh) by the year 2020. In other words. Similarly. By far the best solution is to cache the surplus electricity and then feed it back into the grid whenever the wind drops or skies are cloudy. highly efficient. Underground storage systems (below) could also be a solution. this is only possible to a limited degree. more than 99 percent of the energy-storage systems in use worldwide are pumpedstorage power plants.700 MW and a capacity of 40 gigawatt-hours (GWh). pumped-storage power plants have an efficiency of around 80 percent. this can have bizarre consequences. it was the pacesetter. Germany should have wind farms with a total output of 55 gigawatts (GW). newable sources of energy.S. In Germany. for buffering periodic fluctuations in demand. In addition. “Batteries the size of a shipping container can store about 5 MWh of electrical energy and are installed in the grid close to the consumer. Germany already accounts for approximately 20 percent of the world’s total wind power generating capacity. Each year. but has now been pushed into second place in this particular world ranking by the U. Both scenarios must be avoided. The power network itself is unable to assume this function. when a megawatthour (MWh) was briefly traded at minus €152.4 percent or 39.” explains Dirk Ommeln from EnBW. The grid capacity at the point of entry in both countries would also have to be increased in order to avoid bottlenecks in transmission capability. according to a projection by the German Renewable Energy Federation (BEE).” warns Dr. Gernot Spiegelberg from Siemens CT. Such negative prices actually became a reality on May 3. Although their battery capacity is small in comparison with the amounts of energy required in the grid. One option is underground hydrogen storage. is now looking to market its potential for electricity storage. which can be found in every mobile phone. The facility has an output of 1. and can feed power into the grid quickly. however. As a result. no other type of storage facility is capable of supplying power in the GW range over a period of several hours. Batteries and Compressed Air. 2009. merely by burning more or less fuel. Storing Power with Water. With conventional power plants.28 2. and as a buffer to balance out fluctuations from re- Trapping the Wind Power produced from renewable sources such as wind and sunlight is irregular.” says Dr. which is inexpensive. in a method known as V2G (vehicle to grid). “This would be necessary because electricity always looks for the path of least resistance and will take another route when it encounters an obstruction. With fluctuating sources of energy. and China also make significant use of pumpedstorage power plants.7 70 150 300 350 1 2 3 Height difference: 100 meters pressure: 2 MPa (= 20 bars) pressure: 20 MPa.5 hertz. This applies particularly to gas. power plants are immediately taken offline whenever an overload pushes the grid frequency below 47. “As few as 200. and such projects often trigger protests.g. vide the base load — primarily nuclear power and lignite-fired plants — ramping up and down is relatively complicated and costly. electric vehicles could also serve as local cache facilities for electricity in the future.” says Prof. the operator of a conventional power plant chose to pay someone to take the power rather than to temporarily reduce output. too. would otherwise be a danger of damage to connected devices such as motors. the surplus power is used to pump water up to a reservoir. In fact. Here. for example. Energie Baden-Württemberg (EnBW). It’s a beautifully simple and efficient idea. The energy held in reserve by pumped-storage power plants can be called up within a matter of minutes. the frequency at which alternating current is transmitted deviates from the stipulated 50 hertz. wind power accounted for 6. On windy days.” They are used as an emergency power supply. Germany). Manfred Waidhas from Siemens Corporate Technology (CT). reflecting the proportion of energy generated in relation to the energy used in pumping the water to the top reservoir. and it rarely heeds our wishes. they supply around 7. as a reserve at times of peak load. this method is used practically throughout the country. However. however. electrical appliances. which have an efficiency of as much as 70 to 80 percent. Norway. And that’s enough balancing energy to improve grid stability. which has a long history of hydropower. Oversupply can likewise pose problems.060 megawatts (MW) and could supply the entire state of Thuringia with power for eight hours. The ideal solution is to cache the surplus electricity and feed it back into the grid as required. Until recently. Wind power isn’t always generated exactly when consumers need it. are used for this purpose. the price of electricity may even fall below zero. but also in the Vorarlberg region of Austria. The best-known of all electricity storage devices is the rechargeable battery. which are responsible for providing the intermediate load — in other words. for example. “In Japan. efficiency 58% he wind blows when and where it will. uses pumped-storage facilities not only in Germany. that can have a serious impact on our power supply. the water is allowed to flow back down to a lower reservoir — generating electricity in the process by means of water turbines. Sodium-sulfur batteries.000 vehicles connected to the grid would produce 8 GW. it pres- T ents the power companies with a problem. the sheer number of such vehicles and the relatively high powers involved — e. As soon as demand increases. Indeed. providing a combined output of 6. “On the other hand. it may be necessary to sell surplus power at a giveaway price on the European Energy Exchange in Leipzig. Germany’s Renewable Energy Act stipulates that German network operators must give preference to power from renewable sources. a proven method is to use pumped-storage power plants. There is a lack of suitable locations. when people switch on electric appliances and lights. In all. These days. as there such a simple option. In 2007. By then. For this reason.S. provided they are connected to the grid via a power cable. to which wind energy is now making an increasingly important contribution. and that’s exactly when demand bottoms out.7 terawatt-hours (TWh) of gross power consumption in Germany. output can be adjusted in line with consumption. for example. Although this is all excellent news as far as the climate is concerned. about 350 km southwest of Berlin. since it is a finely balanced system in which supply and demand have to be carefully matched. wind generators produce more power at night. For example. 40 kilowatts (kW) per vehicle — could make up for this. safety specifications. falling in the case of excess demand.and coal-fired plants. Whenever demand for electricity falls. Christian Dötsch Source: KBB Underground Technologies GmbH 48 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 49 .Tomorrow’s Power Grids | Energy Storage Pumped-storage power plants are used to stockpile surplus power (here an 80 MW plant in Wendefurth. In fact. At present. major efforts are being made to find alternative methods worldwide.500 GWh of so-called balancing power. and this proportion.
in 1991. is it? Arvizu: Well. So one thing that we have to do is to intelligently interweave various energy sources that produce the equivalent of a base load.” What’s more. Around 60 caverns are now under construction in Germany. In one of its studies NREL claimed that on federal lands enough resources are available from renewable sources to meet all U. Forty-five thousand two-way meters are being installed. to successfully deal with some of the interconnection challenges that renewable energy sources represent. One exciting example is in Boulder. Colorado and is called “Smart Grid City. What’s your vision of this area? Arvizu: Of course no one knows for sure what a smart grid will look like. tomorrow’s grid needs to be protected from physical and cyber attacks. etc. Safety and Energy Technology in Oberhausen. In April 2009 Enertrag laid the foundation stone for a new test facility in Prenzlau.? Arvizu: Sure. The hydrogen will be used to power hydrogen vehicles or will be mixed with biogas to produce electricity and heat in two block-type cogeneration plants with a total output of 700 kW. he worked for international engineering and infrastructure company CH2M Hill. which has been pressurized to as much as 100 bar. though. the extra recharging and discharging for the purposes of load balancing would seriously reduce battery life. labor costs. Alternative energy in the U. on top of which varying demand is met. projects. “Typically. These sources have to become the rule. This has forced some countries. This significantly exceeds CAES (2. In one study we made some realistic assumptions and asked if it’s feasible to produce 20 percent of electricity in the U. where the total energy use in one’s house What challenges will the massive integration of solar and wind power plants into the modern power grid cause? Arvizu: The main problem is that wind and solar power are in variable. we have an even playing field. You often point out that energy in the U. The facility is scheduled to enter service in mid-2010. each year. And in one test. Today safety regulations. interactive.S. Interview: Hubertus Breuer In the future. see page 60. and other renewable energy sources. the gas turbines are custom made. compare with other countries regarding smart grid implementation? Arvizu: When it comes to deployment of renewable energy technologies. these plants are often far from urban centers. the U. I believe this can be achieved through technological innovation and market incentives such as emissions trading for CO2. and emissions — e. it can also be mixed with syngas — from. Also. This involves pumping air. Germany. Some companies recently announced they intend to build giant solar energy plants in Africa to transmit electricity to Europe. That in turn may help them develop more accurate predictions of energy demand and meet it accordingly. there are a number of pilot could be calculated. The grid will probably not be centralized any longer. Dan Arvizu. “If we were to use only 30 of these for hydrogen storage. It provides a base load. The current remaining hurdles are politics. One of his main objectives is to push the development of energy efficiency and alternative energy sources.S.” We are involved in this project.” Wolf points out. Clearly. Hydrogen has such a high energy density that as much as 350 kilowatt-hours (kWh) can be squeezed into every cubic meter of available storage space. hydrogen is used to power a gas turbine or a fuel cell. Hydrogen has other advantages: Apart from storing energy for generating power or heat. In the Southwest there’s plenty of sun and the desert is huge. hydropower.S. By way of comparison. The gas is then stored in underground caverns at a pressure of between 100 and 350 bar. Theoretical potential is what could be achieved with alternative energy resources if finances. “Each cavern is capable of providing more than 500 MW for up to a week in base-load operation – the equivalent of 140 GWh.S. into underground cavities such as exhausted salt domes with a volume of between 100. Smart Grids: Dr. This opens up the prospect of eventually doing away with the physical meter and measuring use only on the Internet. solar energy becomes profitable. At this scale and with appropriate transmission. solar. Battery-powered cars could make excellent storage devices. Today. How could electricity be stored? Arvizu: Batteries will gain more prominence in the future to meet fluctuating energy production and demand. “What’s more. Interview conducted in Fall. Hydropower is certainly the most straightforward storage solution. continues to be more expensive than conventional energy.” says Dötsch.S. everybody is facing the same challenges. Is something like this conceivable for the U. hot water boilers and industrial machinery in a way that takes advantage of a cheap surplus of energy when it is available. That’s what’s happening in the context of a pilot project in Brandenburg. we mean wind. Other countries have been driven primarily by heavy government subsidies for solar and wind energy. (For more. Colorado. This will also allow energy providers to know how much energy their costumers actually use. electric vehicles could provide temporary storage of electricity. information-rich. but energy is saved because the compressed air for combustion is already available.” says Waidhas.g.S. when it comes to the smart grid. And they have to survive economically on their own. not the exception. in 1978. and just plain more sophisticated. Jump Starting Use of Renewable Energy Resources Can you flesh this out a bit? Arvizu: Today more than 60 percent of the energy content in our supply gets lost in inefficient conversion to electricity at the power plant or on its way to the consumer. but I would expect it to be flexible.“ he says. which today is still being met by coal and nuclear power plants. and technology were not an issue. is a physicist and the director of the U. “In both projects. electricity mainly comes from a network of big cables that have central power stations at various intersections. When we speak of alternative energy. which could be fed back into the grid as required. as well as the Sandia National Laboratories in New Mexico before his appointment as head of the NREL in 2005.” says Waidhas. Germany. and commodity prices keep energy prices high. but there are drawbacks. according to Erik Wolf from Siemens Energy Sector in Erlangen. How far has the smart grid advanced so far? Arvizu: Worldwide. wind. The basic idea behind CAES is simple. 59. less vulnerable than present systems. Here. For example. leakage is not a problem. An expert on photovoltaic and battery technology. underground hydrogen storage facilities can supply power quickly and are as flexible as a combined-cycle power plant.S. The grid of the future will also be able to integrate much more energy produced by solar. Finally. supply.” Hydrogen: Ideal Storage Medium? An interesting alternative to the methods already mentioned is hydrogen storage. rather than constant. transmission efficiency can be improved over long distances by using a highvoltage direct-current transmission system. where.S. a limited number of households will be able to see online how they consume electricity throughout the house. We also have to price the externalities of fuel extraction.200 GWh of electrical energy. “This is because the rock-salt walls of such caverns behave like a liquid. “At present. “You still need a fossil fuel such as natural gas. environmental damage — into the prices consumers pay so that fuel sources can be compared on the same basis. consumption needs. less than 0. Additionally. without any subsidies.7 kWh/m3) and is matched only by lithium-ion batteries.” says Wolf. such as Denmark and Germany. One important element is the installation by Xcel Energy. of a broadband interconnection infrastructure that allows information to flow both ways between the consumer and the electricity utility. That ‘s impressive — but it’s not a serious proposal. politics. And since these sources will be more widely distributed throughout the country. lags behind other industrial countries. and that kind of special development costs money. It will meet real time needs better.” For this reason. biomass plants — to produce fuel in a biomass-to-liquid process. all the pumped-storage power plants in Germany have a combined capacity of only 40 GWh. Germany. What advantages does the smart grid offer for consumers and energy producers? Arvizu: Mostly it gives you one thing — the opportunity to make wise decisions about your energy use and ultimately save energy and save money! The smart network will allow consumers to monitor their electricity use. says Wolf. whenever demand for electricity rises. “This compressed air can be used in a gas turbine. thereby improving the network’s stability. some homes will have Webaddressable appliances that allow their power use information to be transmitted to the Internet. Our conclusion is that this is not a crazy idea. conversion. “CAES only gives you storage capacity of around 3 GWh. Arvizu: That has to change. Christian Buck Smart grids are a hot topic in the U. financing and transmission. any of the caverns already used for the short-term storage of natural gas would also be suitable for hydrogen. the number of times they can be recharged is still very limited. from wind by 2030. has to become cheaper. we would be able to cache around 4. At present. we should learn to use power when it is available. 50 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 51 . make choices about appliances and their use. but that is not an option everywhere.01 percent is lost.S. we could use electric cars. and manage their overall energy needs based on this information. surplus electricity is used to produce hydrogen by means of electrolysis. With hydrogen storage. Germany. Additionally. energy will have to be bundled and distributed more intelligently and the grid will need to accommodate varying generation coupled with varying loads. for example. The necessary technology already exists. and it will transport energy more efficiently than the present-day grid.) Another concept is to warehouse potential kinetic energy underground by a technique known as compressed air energy storage (CAES). refrigerators. That’s what Germany has done. This will be the world’s first hydrogen-wind-biogas hybrid power plant capable of producing hydrogen from surplus wind power. How does the U. one can talk of various potentials. and any leaks seal up automatically. The future of the electric grid looks different.000 and a million cubic meters. the sponsoring utility. the second in McIntosh.” There are two CAES pilot projects worldwide: the first went into operation in Huntorf. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden. this has to be done much more efficiently — for example.Tomorrow’s Power Grids | Energy Storage | Interview Arvizu from the Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental. Still. use. One could envision a scenario where one charges one’s car during the night when energy is cheap and uses it or feeds it back into the grid during the day. underground hydrogen storage is unmatched by any other energy-storage system. Alabama. 2009. These are limitations to the potential that realistically can be achieved.
consumers can also selectively switch off devices at peak times to ease network loads.” Well-insulated water tanks capable of acting as heat stores are already available. washing machines and driers can be run at night when electricity is cheaper. heat storage based on phase change is still at the R&D stage. The key is to know when rates are lower. access control. high-tech vision. Ultimately. Entire grids will benefit as it will be easier 52 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 53 . Small cogeneration plants in buildings could also be better integrated into power networks in the future.” says Volker Dragon. “We therefore need interfaces that allow control systems to communicate with one another. Germany. and energy is being used optimally. But a hospital operates around the clock. Planned architectural measures are expected to dramatically reduce that figure in Masdar. 114). experts predict a savings potential of up to 20 percent. Siemens is involved in the project. “That is not a trivial matter because these systems have developed independently over many years. which can change every 15 minutes. “More and more buildings have photovoltaic or small wind power plants on their roofs. room automation. For example. In contrast. air conditioning. power distribution.” These small boxes will not only measure energy consumption.” predicts Christoff Wittwer from the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems in Freiburg. In fact. “If electricity demand is high. Starting in 2010. and thus offer new products. late beneath them. “On and off times can be determined by a smart meter. in Europe many shopping malls are open ten to 12 hours a day and closed on Sunday. Here. intelligent building management systems will ease the load on power and heat networks — and even feed selfgenerated electricity into the grid. “Shopping malls often have a savings potential of up to 50 percent. and video surveillance. the melted salt releases its stored heat and solidifies. The heating can be turned off in an office building but not in a hospital. the city is expected to have 50. Advanced technologies not only save energy in hot and temperate zones. Customers will have better insight into their electricity costs. p. refrigeration. In order to maximize efficiency. In fact. buildings in Masdar will be built close together. it also fits in very well with our energy efficiency program and the solutions offered by our Environmental Portfolio. “The Masdar initiative is not only a fascinating project. who works in the area of energy efficiency at Siemens’ Building Technologies Division in Zug. is scheduled to be completed in 2016. Masdar is. buildings will actively participate in the grid. we’re talking about five to ten percent. supported when necessary by a cogeneration unit. But which hours offer the best prices? “Many appliances are already capable of determining this through signals in power lines. Fall 2008. he environmentally-friendly city of the future is being built in a desert in the United Arab Emirates. but will also be able to communicate with household appliances and utilities.” Software solutions that address this challenge are being developed by Siemens Building Technologies under the name “Total Building Solutions” (TBS). Switzerland. Take the new Monte-Rosa Hut of the Swiss Alpine Club. City planners expect improved efficiency to offset the high cost of implementing advanced energy solutions. ventilation. thus helping to maintain cool temperatures by allowing air to circu- T to spread energy consumption. intelligent building management technology is in demand everywhere. while the waste heat will be fed into a local heat storage system or into the thermal capacity of the building. “Only if all of these systems harmonize perfectly can their economic potential be fully realized. an office complex. Yield is very high: “These types of cogeneration plant have an overall efficiency of over 90 percent. In addition. an industrial complex or a shopping mall — TBS will ensure that the facility is working productively. meet its energy requirements entirely from renewable sources. the energy required per Masdar resident is projected to be only one fifth of today’s consumption. for example. 76). thus helping it to coordinate its power and heating systems as well as energy storage and applicate power demand. Later. a hotel.” says Dragon. who manages Siemens’ activities in Dubai. A smart algorithm will periodically calculate the best end temperature. This goal can be achieved if forward-looking planning and modern technology complement each other. If it proves a success. They include building control and security technologies. Masdar’s green. including dynamic rates.” says Dragon. they can also do so in icy areas.” These differences depend on how buildings are used. a hospital. It will be largely self-sufficient — thanks to sophisticated building technology and components supplied by Siemens (see p. After all. Conversely. It would also help them to prevent sudden peak loads from occurring — for example.” Large Savings Potential. Power will be supplied by a photovoltaic system. The amount of energy that can be saved through the intelligent networking of power utilities and consumers varies from case to case. which is achieved by leveling demand over each 24-hour period. and produce zero carbon dioxide. “In terms of primary energy. “That’s why hospitals don’t have much scope for saving large amounts of energy. both parties have an interest in a flat load curve. “Intelligent electric meters — the smart meter — will usher in a lot of change in this area. how often do you have the opportunity to build a complete city with a focus on minimizing its environmental footprint right from the start? However. “This figure fluctuates depending on the type of building. while office buildings have between 20 and 30 percent. experts generally agree that savings of 20 to 25 percent are realistic. buildings are being transformed from mere energy consumers to active participants in the electricity market. urban developers and architects from around the world may orientate their plans according to the technologies that prove themselves here. In indus- trialized countries. fire and burglary protection. all isolated solutions should be combined.Tomorrow’s Power Grids | Networking In the future. for instance. surplus heat is used to melt a salt. Not far from Abu Dhabi.000 inhabitants.” says Tom Ruyten. For hospitals. The challenge is to coordinate each building’s sub-systems with one another and control their communication with their surroundings. However.” Managing Demand. But in the future. However. when demand for heat increases. a major greenhouse gas (Pictures of the Future. a variety of systems are being linked into one unit. when large numbers of consumers turn on appliances at the same time. “Whether in a stadium. In other words. users are being reliably protected.” says Dragon. that’s much more productive than large-scale fossil fuel power plants that don’t exploit waste heat. Today.” says Dragon. unique. where they offer self-generated power for sale. which is perched at an altitude of 2.” says Wittwer. a cogeneration plant will deliver energy to the network. Here. of course. Christian Buck Plugging Buildings into the Big Picture Around 40 percent of the energy consumed worldwide is used in buildings to provide heating and lighting. In line with this philosophy. 70 percent of the energy consumed in Abu Dhabi is used to cool buildings.” says Dragon.883 meters. for example. “This heat can be used later by residents. the building’s control system will use weather forecasts and information on guest bookings. Naturally. thereby providing each other with shade and thus reducing air conditioning requirements. buildings will be built on concrete pedestals. Power is to be generated primarily by solar-thermal power plants and photovoltaic facilities. which was developed by British architect Sir Norman Foster. When complete. so that the desired room climate can be realized with the least resources — thereby ensuring that not even the smallest amount of energy is wasted. a European Union directive and legal regulations in Germany will require all new and modernized buildings to be equipped with smart meters. consumers would have to consent to having their appliances turned on or off by a utility depending on the network’s load — based on the premise that they would be paying less for their power. while utilities will be able to more accurately predict demand. workers from all over the world are building Masdar City. In Masdar City (small pictures) narrow spaces between and under buildings will enhance cooling. heating. For instance.” This scenario would give utilities the advantage of being able to manage demand within their networks.
Jürgen Knaak. special contract customers. A total of 150. Italian energy supplier ENEL. Such partnerships require a high degree of flexibility. as was the case in the past. around three percent of the readings of conventional meters are erroneous and need to be repeated. Smart meters. legislation enacted as part of electricity market deregulation is leading to the rapid introduction of smart meters. electricity storage will one day play a major role here and with improved network load planning it will be possible to reduce the occurrence of the sort of major blackouts that have caused havoc in Europe and the U. such as the need for a second readings. have laid part of the foundation for this flexible network of the future. which supplies electricity to the region east of Stuttgart. and power generation capacity stepped down when less electricity is needed. “On average. Meters capable of such real-time data delivery were not available to the average consumer until recently — but now. Completely new grid structures are now being set up throughout large parts of India and China. or whether the supply voltage has dropped dramatically in particular areas. from Siemens Metering Services. this enables suppliers to send price signals to cus- tomers. month.S. “It’s time to get out of the dark!” What Knaak is referring to is the fact that for a very long time nearly all electricity customers and suppliers around the world have suffered from a huge lack of information. Finally. on the shores of Lake Constance will also soon be enjoying the benefits offered by the Siemens meter. is now re- types of cooperation models for smart metering systems by partnering with U. with dozens of projects currently under way in the U.000 terawatt hours (TWh). Most smart meters are now being used in highly developed countries.1 billion can be amortized relatively quickly through savings of around €500 million per year. Utilities also save money and. Alexander Schenk. By installing around 30 million smart meters with feedback channels. The initial investment of €2. on the other hand.” Arbon residents will be among the first in Switzerland to know exactly how much electricity they’re using every per year. p. has been able to automatically carry out 210 million meter readings. The Transparent Network Power companies worldwide have begun installing electronic smart meters that allow customers to monitor consumption practically in real time and thus conserve energy. For one thing. “Smart meters reduce this error rate to nearly zero.6 million placing its conventional meters with Siemens AMIS units along with the complete meter data management system.63). they also automatically forward consumption data to a control center and have a feedback channel. Direct economic benefits are generated in such nations mainly through a decrease in blackouts and efficiency gains in service processes. Such companies benefit from better grid load planning and lower costs. Germany. we. electricity production in the most developed regions will grow by only about 1. EnBW ODR.” says Arbon Energie’s Knaak. By 2030. however. Switzerland. more and more power suppliers are installing smart meters that electronically measure electricity consumption. says. “This allows us as a supplier to make more precise forecasts of peak load times. So. smart meters represent just a small component of a much larger project: the smart grid. explains. while service costs per customer and year have been reduced from €80 to €50. has an energy efficiency and services directive that stipulates that all conventional meters be replaced by smart meters by 2020.3 percent per year.” Andreas Kleinschmidt 54 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 55 . prices for consumers lowered or raised in line with peak loads. the manual reading of conventional meters is subject to errors that generate additional costs. integrating it into existing systems won’t be a problem. "In many now being supplied with electricity for the very first time. “Without smart meters. “Smart meters don’t just substitute a digital display for mechanical cogs. According to Knaak. More developed markets — like Brazil. One smart meter now on the market is the AMIS model from Siemens. These require disproportionate amounts of time and energy in comparison with standard reading trips. That’s because data from electricity meters generally doesn’t become available until months after power is actually consumed. and then receiving a huge bill at the end of the year. there would never be a smart grid. Siemens offers complete solutions that include everything from hardware to software. since the business logic behind smart metering projects differs greatly from region to region. Whereas today’s poorer countries are expected to expand their annual production by around four percent. As smart metering technology will be used here from the start. with most of this data transfer occurring via power line communication — in other words. in many of the most developed countries. for example.” Among other things. “Smart metering is leading to the formation of new business models". says Philip Skipper. W Having such data made available in something closer to real time would conserve resources. Consumers know nearly nothing about their electricity consumption habits. head of Services at Power Distribution. hen asked about the electricity meters in the Swiss municipality of Arbon. if you’ve got an area with a million customers. instead of having to pay estimated fees. at least not in Arbon. one of the world’s leading providers of meter data processing services. In addition. global electricity production is expected to increase by 63 percent over its 2008 level to approximately 33. Fall 2008.000 of which are scheduled to be installed in Upper Austria by early 2010 (see Pictures of the Future.S.Tomorrow’s Power Grids | Smart Meters Smart meters enable consumers to monitor and manage their power use.” says Knaak. all new buildings built today have to have such meters. Smart meters will thus also be installed in many areas in these markets. and thus plan more efficiently. the grid itself. over the last few years. Time for Smart Meters. who can then reduce consumption during peak times in order to save money. gain detailed insight into network dynamics.” says Dr. where the vast majority of households already have electricity — will have to modernize their systems to reduce electricity Completely new business models based on smart metering will arise in coming years. and such information only shows the sum of the electricity used over a specific period of time. for the first time. as consumption could then be flexibly adjusted. head of the local power utility. and Europe. With this energy network. cases the complexity and risk requires a new approach and as a trusted and proven innovator in this space Siemens is serving as the service partner that drives the transformation of the metering function. The benefits that smart energy meters offer utility companies go far beyond improved grid load planning.S. which corresponds to 53 percent of the previous cost for readings. head of the AMIS Business Segment at Siemens’ Power Distribution Division. Andreas Heine. for example. Residents of Arbon. for example. So living in the dark about one’s own electricity consumption will soon no longer be an issue. while suppliers know very little about the state of their grids at any given — including such basic information as whether loads in certain sections are dangerously high. some 100. are read automatically. it will be easier to incorporate renewable sources of energy.” Siemens prepared itself well for such new theft and increase supply reliability. Indeed.000 villages in India alone will be hooked up to the grid over the next few years. and many regions are European Union. you can save more than €1. and the power distribution structure gives us the kind of insight we need as to what’s going on in the grid. in our little town of Arbon. Ninety percent of the company’s new meters communicate with a central server that processes the huge amounts of data.-based eMeter.” No More Flying Blind. “Together with Siemens. Arbon Energie AG. “The near-real-time transmission of data from households.
” says Dr. such as wind and sunshine. They are now enjoying new significance as part of a virtual power plant. Once DEMS was developed by Siemens when it became evident how the electric power grid and the electric power market would be affected by increasing supply from distributed and renewable energies (Pictures of the Future. it is checked and approved by the portfolio manager. “We need open standards to substantially simplify the design of virtual power plants. a portfolio manager can view color virtual power plant and generates an operating schedule (right) for its power generation.” says Kramer. distributed power systems linked to form virtual pools that can be operated from a central control station.” he adds. DEMS generates an operating schedule for the individual power plants in the virtual plant. the nine small hydroelectric plants in the project function as a single large one. This is where the virtual power plant’s operator can sell reserve power and make a specific capacity available as a minute reserve. central power plants by creating new suppliers with small.” says Martin Kramer. As a case in point. Once a schedule has been generated. Using plant status information. And now these old-timers have become a key part of a much larger. When needed. and of course the end customer. such as electric power output.” near Koblenz. The system overview is subdivided into producers and loads. its power will be sold directly in the energy market. the facility is one of the region’s smaller power plants. Such a pool can unite wind power. Product Manager. since the nine-member virtual power plant does not reach that level. Its DEMS computer is in a control center in Plaidt Power in Numbers Small. Externally. In the background. power grid operators. power grid operators need to maintain a constant balance in the power grid despite fluctuations in consumption and electric power generation. or as a balancing reserve for load fluctuations to power grid operators. DEMS generates a forecast that also takes into account the next day’s prices and the total power available.Tomorrow’s Power Grids | Virtual Power Plants Hydroelectric plants in Germany like those at Ahausen and Niederense (below) have been in operation for decades. “To market electric power on the energy markets for minute reserves — the power that must be available on demand within 15 minutes — a virtual power plant is required to have a minimum capacity of 15 megawatts. bird songs. the Professional Virtual Power Plant pilot project of RWE (a power plant operator) and Siemens. its constituent plants have established a key prerequisite for new forms of marketing. and combining it with market forecasts. “The project — which will continue until 2010 — and the technology are working so well that we’re going to connect Today. it has been approved and accepted by the market. The system displays the present status of systems. the energy management system controls the entire process — including the requirements of the individual power plants — fully automatically. such plants are too small to market their capacities through energy traders on the energy exchange. generates prognoses and quotations. The virtual plant is highly distributed. Their total initial output for pilot operation was 8. The schedule specifies exactly when and how much power must be available from which plant. Siemens communications devices in power stations link the stations with the control center via wireless communication modems. “Uniform interfaces and protocols have yet to be defined.” As part of a virtual plant.6 megawatts. The virtual power plant is an intelligent solution. Cool Controls. who points out that each virtual plant therefore requires tailored solutions. innovative high-tech plan.” As a result. distributed power plants and fluctuating energy sources such as wind and sunlight have one thing in common. electricity T some additional power plants. Just about everybody stands to gain from the project — power plant owners. and power storage. The advantage of this approach is that it requires no costly cables or rented landlines. Martin Kramer of RWE agrees. Distributed Energy Management System software shows the current status of all systems included in a traders. the operator stations are in Cologne. Following a planned expansion. p. Lucrative Reserve Power. Even weather data is factored into the energy management system to provide a forecast of the power available from sources with fluctuating availability. Additional information is provided on “forecasting and usage planning” and “monitoring and control. who could profit from more intense competition. RWE Project Manager for Distributed Energy Systems. As idyllic as this setting is. Existing business models for virtual power plants already promise attractive profits. a small hydroelectric power station built in 1913 does not look out of place here. cogeneration. and biogas systems as well as large power consumers such as aluminum smelters and large process water pumps to function as a single supplier. he many hiking trails around the village of Niederense in the state of Westphalia. Yet its Siemens-Halske generators have been tirelessly producing electricity for nearly 100 years. In spite of this complex mix.” says Werner. and the power plants are in the Sauerland. It networks multiple small power stations to form a large. Fall 2007. This schedule is controlled in the demand mode (left). Power System Management at Siemens Energy. At the heart of Sauerland’s virtual power plant is Siemens’ Distributed Energy Management System (DEMS). communication systems ensure reliable connections between the control center and individual power plants. smart power grid. no standards exist yet for distributed power plant communications. Before a quotation is placed on the energy market through an energy trader. Since October 2008 they have been interconnected with eight other hydroelectric plants on the Lister and Lenne Rivers in a rural part of Westphalia known as Sauerland as part of ProViPP. With the Sauerland project Siemens and RWE plan to demonstrate the technological and economic utility of virtual power plants and to expand their knowledge base for further applications. Germany. photovoltaic. The virtual power plant concept complements the big utility companies with their large. however. 90). They increase the need for reliable and economical operation of electric power grids. Conveniently positioned at the center of the display is the “balance node” (the sum of the incoming and outgoing power must equal zero). “Individually. Even though this virtual power plant is not yet actively participating in electric power trading. the Möhne River and unspoiled nature. contracts. offer tranquility. No manual corrections are needed. the purchaser places an order for the 56 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 57 . “The system is working extremely well. Thomas Werner. With an output of 215 kilowatts. “DEMS does such a good job of modeling that its schedules can be run exactly the way it defines them. it feeds its energy into the grid in accordance with Germany’s Renewable Energy Law (EEG). small hydroelectric. bar graphs showing which power stations are currently running at peak load or at base load and how much power they are producing. even small energy producers can sell their power on the electricity market. and controls electric power generation as scheduled.
global copper reserves will be exhausted in 32 years (Pictures of the Future. Prof. fewer power lines will have to be built to transport electricity. Smart grids (see p. The IEA and Siemens expect that the amount of electricity generated from wind. Sources: Morgan Stanley Research. the equivalent figure was just 49 million. compressed air storage. IEA. must also be added to this figure). Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) estimates that the creation of a nationwide smart grid over the next two decades will cost around $165 billion. This made it possible to postpone a huge investment for several years. There are other uses of virtual power plants. On the one hand. Even more impressive is the growth in solar electricity. market analysts at Morgan Stanley Research estimate that the worldwide market volume for smart grid technologies will increase from roughly $22 billion in 2010 to $115 billion in 2030. such as by interconnecting the emergency power generators in hospitals and factories with the battery storage systems common in telephone and Internet communications centers. In the U. A study performed by Ludwig-Bölkow-Systemtechnik GmbH using data from the E. To avoid this.000 20. decentralized power generators and consumers. for example. 20) and solar thermal power plants in the desert will have to be connected. One such problem that should not be underestimated is the fact that wind and solar power are inconsisSource: Ludwig-Bölkow-Systemtechnik GmbH. 22).583 TWh. much of this additional solar electricity could be produced by solar thermal power plants in the deserts of northern Africa and the Middle East. shortages and price increases of this scarce metal are likely to occur even sooner.400 kilometers away on the coast (see p. gas-powered. expects $44 billion will be invested in HVDC technology by 2012. the amount of CO2 emitted during the generation of electricity would be reduced to zero. 14) is completed by 2030. worldwide sales for photovoltaic and wind energy systems and biofuels will increase from roughly $116 billion in 2009 to $325 billion in 2018. the amount of wind-generated electricity fed into the grid will increase around thirteen fold. biomass.8 percent. The potential of the associated efficiency improvement measures is best illustrated by the following example: If all existing power plants were upgraded to the highest efficiencies technically feasible today. but from a much lower level. According to these projections. Despite this growth in renewable energies. 15% 15% 20% 2% Renewables Hydroelectric Nuclear power Gas Oil Coal Geothermal 4% Wind 52% Communications network Block-type cogeneration power plant Concentrator Remote meter reading PV system Wind farm Communications unit Influenceable loads Weather service and Siemens. In order to protect the climate and to reduce greenhouse gases. Another useful alternative is to sell electric power at the European Energy Exchange (EEX) in Leipzig.. Fall 2008. “German utility companies alone plan to invest €40 to €50 billion in the modernization of the grids. Market experts at ABI Research expect that roughly 73 million smart meters will be installed worldwide in 2009. as was shown in the case of a municipal power plant in Germany’s Ruhr district. Based on IEA and EPRI data. This corresponds to an average annual growth rate of 8.Tomorrow’s Power Grids | Virtual Power Plants | Facts and Forecasts Advanced IT is the Core Element of a Virtual Power Plant E Biomass power plant Network management system Energy management system Energy exchange € Invoicing Growing Demand for Renewables and Smart Grid Technologies A ccording to the International Energy Agency (IEA) tent and often unavailable when they’re needed most. alone. “The benefit of a power station network extends far beyond its present applications. mini blocktype cogeneration plants and interconnecting them to form a virtual power plant that delivers electric power and heating.” says Rolf Adam. An interesting alternative to generating additional power is for the central control station to briefly shut down large-scale consumers such as aluminum smelters. a grid operator in China. 44). energy storage (see p. to a total of 33.a.ON grid February 2008 Discrepancy: Wind Power and Grid Load Output (MW) 25. the area’s electric power needs were met by installing distributed. According to the UCTE — the Union for the Coordination of Transmission of Electricity — some €300 billion must be invested in new power and gas lines in Europe over the next 25 years. worldwide electricity genera- How Renewables will Grow 2008-2030 Others 1% tion will grow by 63 percent relative to 2008. solar energy.S. a market analysis company specialized in the clean technology sector. Siemens is among the companies currently involved in the erection of a high-capacity. and the integration of a wide variety of small. If at least a portion of the Desertec project (p. high-voltage direct current transmission lines (HVDC) in China to link hydroelectric plants in the country’s interior with megacities more than 1. Virtual power plants also have a macroeconomic advantage. i. this situation will be exacerbated and become more frequent in the future.S. There is a two-pronged solution to this problem. Technologies must also be found to remove carbon dioxide — either before or after combustion — so that it no longer enters the atmosphere. According to a Worldwide power generation (in TWh) 33. the conversion of the energy contained in the raw materials into electricity — be increased. Augmenting electric power lines to supply energy for a new residential area would have required a large capital investment.300 Solar 2% 2. With continued massive expansion of the number of wind power plants.000 15. provided that the cost of producing one megawatt hour is lower than the current exchange price.000 0 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 March 2007 Vertical grid load Estimated wind power 2020 Actual wind power 2007 Supply greatly exceeds demand Smart Grid Technologies: Growth Market 115 Billions of dollars 87 Smart meters and their infrastructure Demand management Power transmission and distribution CAGR: compound annual growth rate 22 38 8. The State Grid Corporation. with wind power driving much of that growth. even as the supply of wind power continues to be well below demand on windless days.583 TWh (17%) 32% Fuel cell Distributed mini block-type cogeneration and photovoltaic systems Distributed loads agreed-on power for a fee.” says Werner. EPRI et al.ON electric grid showed that there are also days (March 17 and 18 in the graphic below) when the available wind power exceeds grid demand. Christoph Weber of Duisburg-Essen University estimates that an energy trader with a virtual power plant can increase earnings by several hundred thousand euros by paying less to the power grid operator for “compensation power. the government hopes to have a good 41 million intelligent meters installed as part of 15 projects by 2015. And if the infrastructures of countries such as India and China consume as much copper as the industrial countries.000 Supply can’t meet demand 5. a principal at Booz & Company. That is roughly ten percent of all energyrelated CO2 emissions worldwide or roughly three times Germany’s CO2 emissions. 60) — could be expanded. electric grids could be more comprehensively linked — across regions.5 billion metric tons. Renewables (without hydro) in 2030: 5. (Sales of solar thermal systems. roughly 54 percent of the electricity generated worldwide in 2030 will still come from fossil energy sources such as coal and natural gas. making smart grid technologies one of the most exciting growth markets of the decades ahead. But this comes at the cost of other problems. which Clean Edge did not take into consideration. An increasingly large proportion of this power will be based on renewable energy sources. The expansion of power grids is already unavoidable because offshore wind farms (see p. p. or even continents. Harald Hassenmüller recent study by Clean Edge Inc. grid status monitoring. this improvement alone would reduce annual CO2 emissions by 2. in addition to photovoltaic systems.3% p.000 terawatt hours (TWh). more flexible and more secure. by 2030. On the other hand. the electric power producer needs to adhere as closely as possible to the agreed-on operating schedule — and that’s the purpose of an energy management system such as DEMS. 48) — whether in the form of pumped storage power plants. World Wind Energy Report et al. The seller then starts up or shuts down generators as specified in the contract within the agreed-on timeframe to stabilize the net frequency at 50 or 60 hertz. Two years ago. But if newly-industrializing countries base the expansion of their energy infrastructures on intelligent power grids and virtual power plants that generate electricity near where it will be used. in a distributed system. At present consumption rates.e. Wind power will generate some $140 billion by 2018.” Such payments are due when less or more power is fed into the grid than had been specified in the operating schedule. but also energy management. with €15 to €25 billion of that going into smart grid technology. The U. national borders. Virtual power plants could also be “produced” from less obvious components. and the limited copper reserves will last longer.8% CAGR 60 2010 2015 2020 2025 2030 58 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 59 . If renewable energies were used. 40) involve not only intelligent electric meters and solutions for flexible billing. it is crucial that the efficiency of the associated power plants — in other words. which is expected to grow 140-fold.000 10. or even the batteries of electric cars (see p. Sylvia Trage / ue 2008 2030 Wind 38% Renewables (without hydro) in 2008: 581 TWh (3% of all power generated) 3% 16% 13% 21% 6% 41% Fossil energies 68% 54% Geothermal 13% Biomass 47% 20. hydrogen caverns. All of this is intended to make power grids more transparent. IEA. So instead of new lines.000 17% Solar 29% Biomass 14% Sources: Siemens. E. and geothermal energy will increase nearly ten fold from 581 TWh to 5.
Denmark is moveing ahead rapidly with electric mobility through a broad range of projects — and Siemens is providing support as a development partner in two areas: connecting vehicles to the grid and automotive engineering. RWE. Practical testing will begin in 2011 on the From Wind to Wheels Industrial companies and energy suppliers are working closely together to make the vision of electric mobility a reality. Ruf and Siemens presented a Porsche 997 Targa-styled model that had been converted into an electric car known as the eRuf Greenster (see Pictures of the Future. After all. which stands for “Electric vehicles in a Distributed and Integrated market using Sustainable energy and Open Networks. which corresponds to a charging time of between 20 minutes and two hours. Charging times will depend mainly on what type of output the outlet offers. and charging electronics. After all. each rated at 40 kW. Spiegelberg refers to these two areas as “Inside Car” and “Outside Car. They will also function as mobile power storage units for the smart grid. who are needed because future electromobility will be about more than just the vehicles themselves. making it the world leader in this area. p. test vehicles will be charged with wind power from the public grid. a total output of eight gigawatts would be available at short notice — more than Germany requires as a cushion against consumption peaks. Road to the Climate Summit. The Danes are hoping that a fleet of thousands of vehicles will be able to offset fluctuations in the wind-power supply. Such components include a fast-charge unit and precisely tuned components for battery management. both the charging process and communications are being addressed. one distribution transformer complete with switchgear will be needed for every 50 vehicles. with 20 stations planned for Berlin. the Siemens covers all facets of electromobility — from vehicle technology to power grid integration. Gernot Spiegelberg. will have optimally matched components. and the technologies needed for storing and bidirectionally transmitting energy derived from renewable sources. and this figure is set to rise to 50 percent by 2025. because the model was developed in only three months. However. Siemens will present three electrically-powered Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs) at the UN’s World Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen. also boasts high torque and impressive acceleration right from the start. In a project with energy supplier mobility. with researchers focusing mainly on the W batteries used in electric vehicles.” says Prof. the resulting required output will be 200 megawatts — which is what a medium power plant produces. Still. Current plans call for one out of ten cars in Denmark to run on electricity from wind power in ten years. The idea is that as electric vehicles enter the market. Siemens is pursuing the development of electromobility through a comprehensive approach involving not only automotive engineer- ings.96). 270 kilowatts of power and a top speed of 250 kilometers per hour. The associated technology for vehicles and the grid will be developed and prepared for use over the next two years. be necessary to install systems that can accommodate the total electricity requirements of the individual vehicles in public areas such as inner-city parking garages and sports stadiums. Charging will take place via an electrical connection under the fuel tank flap. Each vehicle can accommodate four passengers and their luggage. the power grid. It is therefore not surprising that Denmark is a pioneer in the development of storage technologies to accommodate excess electricity. Batteries on Wheels. and up to 43 kW over the medium term. its individual components were not all part of a new component approach but instead represent a combination of available standard components. RWE is now staging a roadshow in Germany that features the Greenster. together with Ruf. This vehicle. The Greenster is a pioneering vehicle that demonstrates just how chic electromobility can be. in December 2009. an electric motor delivers its full performance immediately. These vehicles are based on the Porsche Cayenne chassis and have an integrated charging system with which they can be charged from any power outlet that provides 230–380 volts. which also made a stop at the IAA International Motor Show in September 2009 in Frankfurt am Main. A plug for this application has already been standardized. drivers will want to recharge their electric vehicles at any location — be it a garage. For example. or company parking lot. In addition to CT researchers. and these will have to be installed in basements or separate build- Danish island of Bornholm in the Baltic Sea. Along with automotive engineering. “The successor Greenster II model. which is why EDISON will focus on achieving a bidirectional flow of electricity from the grid into vehicles and back. 60 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 61 . If. if 10. When demand in the grid rises. Here. In Spring 2009 at the Geneva Motor Show in Switzerland. will bring a pool of vehicles to power outlets and connect them to the fluctuating power of the wind. thousands of windmills go into action on the Danish coast. This means several dozen such transformers will have to be linked via medium-voltage switchgear. This is one of the key challenges for electromobility — and not just in Denmark. In addition. Danish power utilities have had to send this surplus electricity to neighboring countries — and pay for doing so. head of the Electromobility Team at Siemens Corporate Technology (CT).” EDISON. will be charged at the UN conference with wind power and will be used in a shuttle service between the conference center and the airport. There. Denmark. which offers Standardized Charging. it will be necessary to reliably identify the vehicle and exchange data between its onboard electronics and the charge pump. a German company that specializes in custom vehicles. the good feeling about so much renewable energy is dampened by the fact that when the wind blows too strongly. the cars and their batteries will provide additional storage capacity. The energy specialists for “Inside Car” and “Outside Car” are currently participating in Denmark’s EDISON project. The concept includes a “power pump” from Siemens that communicates with the vehicle’s electronics. Here. 200. Having several thousand vehicles parked in one place will require major facilities. for instance. which is already being planned. are connected to the grid. motor control. Developers expect to see an initial charging power of around ten kilowatts (kW).000 vehicles. that team includes specialists from Siemens’ Energy and Industry Sectors.” he says.” “We’ve put together a team that covers all facets of electroworld’s first and most extensive project of its kind. In a manner similar to cell phone invoicing. The new Greenster II will be completed by the end of 2010. Siemens is participating in the tour. supermarket. Not only will they recharge in only minutes at fastcharge stations. the power grid will have to be updated. Up until now. the focus here is on the interaction between vehicles. parked cars will feed electricity back into the network. for example. the electricity used will be billed by a provider. Instead of having separate electricity storage units to buffer against the fluctuations. Today. for such a system to work. The results could be significant. the wind-turbine rotors generate more electricity than Denmark’s grid can handle. The SUVs. for their part. hen the west wind rises and the North Sea begins to churn and send its heavy breakers crashing against the dunes of Jutland. Spring 2009. ing — as is the case with Greenster and the SUVs — but also systems for connecting vehicles to the power grid. 20 percent of Denmark’s electricity is produced by wind power. Still. Whereas a combustion engine needs some time in order to fully develop its power. It will.Tomorrow’s Power Grids | Electromobility Tomorrow’s electric vehicles will redefine mobility.000 vehicles simultaneously tap the grid for 20 kW each. Siemens will soon be installing 40 charging stations at locations in Germany. Although this goal may seem ambitious. given that there are hardly any electric vehicles on European roads today.
Siemens offers complete smart meter solutions that include everything from hardware to software. driver can still handle a vehicle perfectly in extreme situations. smart power grid. intelligent building management systems will ease the load on power and heat networks—and even feed self-generated electricity into the grid. an energy management system for the integration of electric cars into the smart grid. uses an electronic control system that ensures optimal propulsion of the right and left wheels. which experts refer to as torque vectoring.dk National Renewable Energy Laboratory: www. various working groups are responsible for developing all the technologies needed for electromobility.” says Sven Holthusen.ae European Network of TSOs: www. With the double motor concept.eu Electric Power Research Institute: www. As a part of this virtual plant. and the technologies needed for storing and bidirectionally transmitting energy derived from renewable sources. Siemens will deliver charging posts. One option is underground hydrogen storage. 52) Power companies worldwide have begun installing electronic smart meters that allow Smart grid platform of the EU: www. It’s already clear to Spiegelberg what will happen next. a midrange vehicle requires around 18 kWh to travel 100 kilometers.000 megawatts — equal to the output of five large power plants .” says Holthusen. This will offer designers completely new possibilities for things like side-mounted wheels that also hold the drive units. which adds weight to the vehicle.” he explains. which are exposed to different loads in a curve. they are working with Harz. and the deregulation of electric power markets have one thing in common. highly efficient. 44. The solution is to develop an intelligent grid that keeps electricity production and distribution in balance. Greenster I was a concept car — but Greenster II will be the world’s first Porsche-based electric vehicle to be manufactured in a small production series. “The coming years will see the development of electric vehicles whose four In Brief Our power grids are facing new challenges.eu EDISON Project: www. we can’t even begin to imagine the type of revolutionary breakthroughs that electromobility will lead to. electronic components can be installed anywhere in the vehicle and don’t necessarily have to be located near the electric motors.S. Kuhn and his colleagues are testing a new drive system for the Greenster II. says Dr. In this context.” If everything goes well with “Inside Car. connection. Such disturbances. Another major obstacle to electromobility is the length of battery recharging times.400 kilometers from hydroelectric plants to the southeastern coast of China. of course. 48) Renewable energy sources have to become the rule. distributed power plants. 54) Small. Today’s infrastructure is not up to this task. decentralized power producers. new battery technologies will have to be developed if a car is to be charged in as little as three minutes (see p.masdar. vehicle entry and exiting could be facilitated in large multi-passenger vehicles by removing the center console and installing active fold-out seats. the Eurisco research and development center. When used as grid-connected storage units. Gernot Spiegelberg (right). “The electric drive system is also highly complex in its own right.nrel.” can lead to failure of the entire network if large waves form. In fact. With this in mind. however. Usually. as these can resonate and unbalance the grid frequency. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in an interview. and associated communication systems. (p. Completely new features are conceivable.mobility in a project designed to determine how distributed wind. 117). in the Greenster II each rear wheel will be propelled by a small drive unit located relatively close to the wheel.smartgrids. all the power must be transferred via a bulky and heavy differential. (p. Around 40% of the energy consumed worldwide is used in buildings to provide heating and lighting. which Siemens is Contaminated Grid? One of Holthusen’s jobs is to study how the grid will be affected when millions of electric vehicles are plugged into it and disconnected every day. Siemens’ testing activities are not limited to Denmark. (pp. however. It networks multiple small power stations to form a large. The company’s researchers are also active in Germany. where. The world’s most powerful HVDCT system. “We go a great deal further in our tests. They increase the need for reliable and economical operation of electric power grids. They will also function as mobile power storage units for the smart grid. Experts say completely new business models based on smart metering will arise in coming years. which isn’t an ideal arrangement for fast cornering. vehicle interiors could be completely redesigned and made even safer — for example. unlike axle shafts. that a wheels will each be equipped with their own small drive unit. which are referred to as “grid-quality contamination. so too must electricity consumers. not the exception. Kuhn and his colleagues are now studying how well the electronic differential works. The HVDCT line will transmit 5. 50) LINKS: Not only must power production become more efficient. by getting rid of the hard steering column and replacing it and the pedals with levers or joysticks for operating the car. Not only will they recharge in only minutes at fast-charge stations. as well as Denmark’s Dong Energy and Østkraft power utilities. particularly with regard to bidirectional charging and discharging. “This enables us to monitor the effects of such a situation on a small scale. Electrics would then be on a par with conventional vehicles. In general. More specifically.epri. In this Where Motors Are Going. the output of a motor is distributed across the wheels via a differential. The key component here is a double motor for the rear axle. the focus here is on the interaction between vehicles.” the complete Greenster II will be put on a test rig in 2010. which is inexpensive. (p.entsoe. It’s thanks to this phenomenon. “It’s not just in the ‘Outside Car’ area that we’ve still got a lot of work to do. Holthusen and his colleagues are working on a fast-charge function that operates with much higher voltages and currents — initially with 400 volts and 63 amps. a small control unit is all that’s needed to send commands by wire to the individual electric motors. Siemens and Ruf are demonstrating just how attractive electric cars can be. “Later on. (p. This will cut the country’s annual CO2 emissions by around 33 million tons. While the SUVs are being readied for their assignment in Copenhagen. He is therefore carrying out his research at the RisØ research campus. But in the future. In addition. They will not only have to integrate large quantities of fluctuating wind and solar power. In the EDISON project.” This will be done to determine how smoothly a vehicle can be connected to the grid infrastructure.edison-net. “Siemens’ portfolio already contains many components that we are now adapting and reprogramming. By comparison. shows how these eco-friendly energy sources can supply millions of citizens in far-off megacities. 60) customers to monitor their consumption practically in real time and thus conserve energy. In 2010 the system will begin transmitting electricity at a record of 800 kilovolts over a distance of 1.” says Kuhn. researchers at Siemens CT labs in Munich are analyzing electronic components.” he says. who is responsible for constructing bidirectional test rigs in Spiegelberg’s team. Moreover. With the Greenster far away from energy sources. the power grid. things become particularly tricky if harmonics occur when batteries are hooked up to the 50-hertz grid. and biogas power systems can be better aligned with the grid. but also incorporate an increasing number of small. (p. model. Along with automotive engineering. these small energy producers can sell their power on the electricity market. These motors will recover brake energy and eliminate the need for a large central motor and the transmission and axle shafts. Whereas the Greenster I was equipped with a rather large central motor. Therefore it’s necessary that renewable energy also reach consumers who are Industrial companies and energy suppliers are working closely together to make the vision of electric mobility a reality. and can feed power into the grid quickly. Scientists at Siemens Corporate Technology want to use test rigs to simulate various load situations. Three participating districts in Germany’s Harz region are looking at how to incorporate electric vehicles into such a system. the EDISON consortium includes the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) and its RisØ-DTU research center. and IBM. Holthusen then uses software to measure how the batteries affect the grid and to cushion the results of connection. fluctuating energy sources such as wind and sunlight. In his tests.com 62 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 63 47 . in order to determine what’s possible. Siemens is mainly responsible for fast-charge and battery replacement systems.Tomorrow’s Power Grids | Electromobility In addition to Siemens. There are no quick fixes for such a scenario yet — but Holthusen is working on answers. which has its own electricity grid. 56) Prof. we’ll connect the vehicles to a simulation of the grid that will be provided by the Energy Sector.gov Masdar Initiative: www. who is responsible for the EDISON project at Siemens’ Energy Sector. director of the U. Holthusen’s approach is considered to be realistic since many European households already have a 400-volt connection in the basement or other storage areas for electric ranges and other devices. solar.” says Karl-Josef Kuhn.EE. (p. he connects up to 15 batteries. 300 kW so that batteries can be recharged in six minutes. Here. Tim Schröder building in China. however. he wants to raise charging power to as much as We can’t even begin to imagine the type of revolutionary breakthroughs that electromobility will lead to. they can even earn money with their batteries. “First we’re going to test individual drive systems and then complete vehicles. each of which weighs 300 kg and has an energy content of 25 kWh. In addition. thereby creating more space. The double-motor concept. Dan Arvizu. The virtual power plant is an intelligent solution from Siemens. 40) Power produced from renewable sources such as wind and sunlight is irregular. Tomorrow’s electric vehicles will redefine mobility. Experts are therefore looking at ways of storing surplus energy so that it can be converted back into electricity when required. the younger brother of the model presented last March. With a central motor concept. Such companies benefit from better grid load planning and lower costs. Lithium-ion batteries with such fast charging capability are expected to be ready for market launch in the near future. However.
as with Transparent.” Green technology projects are becoming more important for SPV as well. as well as the construction of Bangalore Airport ($585 million). Like SVC. we’ll intensify our efforts to enter new markets. however. Bob Zak of Powerit Solutions and B. Canada. CEO of SVC.” he says. how. whether as a general contractor or a supplier of important components. the traffic and transport infrastructure (e. Among the solutions they offer are those that convert industrial waste heat. The company is helped here by its excellent contacts in the banking and financial community. such as that produced by cement plants. Customers can save millions of dollars in just a few years through these programs. Siemens Project Ventures (SPV) has demonstrated that Siemens can embark on new paths with its customers when it comes to the issue of financing. And the systems are adaptive. chief partner. and the healthcare sector. Siemens is investing venture capital in agile.” says Johannes Schmidt. and by how much to turn off or down equipment without affecting food quality or production. “Transparent is an excellent example of how we invest venture capital. Volker Friedrichsen. SPV’s activities to date have included financing the construction of a large coalfired power plant in Indonesia (project volume: $1. “Siemens’ expertise and project experience is very helpful here. the company’s expansion can now be accelerated.” explains Johannes Schmidt. of course. Dr. organized by SVC. which is itself an investment firm with 140 employees. The intervals used by U. Using predictive algorithms. “We use this data to generate complex decision-making matrices that help us balance energy savings with productivity requirements. head of Equity & Project Finance at Siemens Financial Services. where refrigeration units account for a big share of electricity consumption. Kulkarni and his team are involved in the production of major industrial systems. helps industrial firms avoid Energy companies justify this policy by arguing that they must maintain generating capacity to cover even extremely rare demand peaks. Together with Siemens. innovative companies. are a good example. which has seen its sales double year after year. utilities are often only 15 minutes long. “Today. and Mexico. But recently. With its numerous major projects.” he says. This is the case in the U. the company’s boilers were more energy efficient than any others available in India. so they can adjust to a plant’s changing electric profile. SVC’s special advantage here is that it can draw from Siemens’ broad range of experience. for example in midsummer. Andreas Kleinschmidt Green Dwarfs Despite the current economic crisis. Even then. SVC usually acquires a minority interest in companies in the early phases of their development or. Powerit Solutions’ industrial green technology activities still largely focus on North America. ransparent Energy Systems began in a backyard in Pune. SPV focuses on infrastructure projects in the energy sector. Every investment ends with either the sale of the company or an IPO. “Since its founding in 1998. and the U. Powerit Solutions President Bob Zak has been overwhelmed by demand for his product. it started offering minority stakes of €10 to €30 million of so-called growth-capital financing to established companies. because many energy contracts stipulate that monthly energy invoices for industrial customers must be calculated on the basis of a single consumption interval — the one with the highest load — even if actual consumption over the entire month is lower. and strong financial partners are all the more important these days. “Our experience with various industries gives us precise knowledge of the processes involved. Kulkarni with pride. Powerit Solutions (below) develops software that helps to avoid demand peaks.” Kulkarni explains.S. is proud of his team. “The energy yield was at least five percent higher than that of boilers from rival firms. Powerit Solutions links and matches all key production power consumers. Thanks to Transparent’s expansion strategy. Based in the northern German city of Husum. To avoid such peaks. Asia. “Siemens provides a portion of the financing and helps to raise funding for projects in bank or capital markets. Food production facilities. at least.” says Schmidt. and wind power projects that also use Siemens technology.” Together with the “green giant” — Siemens — they can more effectively make their vision of efficient resource utilization a reality. BGZ had installed 950 megawatts of wind power capacity worldwide by the end of 2008. “Our solutions meet our customers’ needs — and not just in India. 20 years later. “Our global network and expertise enable us to identify extraordinary companies before other venture capital firms. for example. the bottom-line return must be solid. we can also develop such companies more productively than our competitors can. This saves money and helps protect the environment. head of Equity & Project Finance at Siemens Financial Services. So in 2008 he started looking for a partner who understood all aspects of his products and business model — and reached an agreement with Siemens Venture Capital (SVC) in May 2009. And in many cases peaks in electricity demand during production operations.” says Zak.g. And both have a partner in Siemens that offers financial strength. Siemens consistently plays a key role in SPV investments. Coping with Demand Peaks. Powerit’s software determines when. into electricity. Kulkarni of Transparent have a lot in common in terms of business goals. the company may soon significantly increase its workforce of 150 contractual employees and 150 wage laborers at two sites in India. “In Siemens. G.Pictures of the Future | Siemens Venture Capital While Transparent Energy Systems specializes in the utilization of waste heat (large image).” he says. SPV also seeks to gain a solid return through its financing ventures.” By discussing their strategy with Siemens experts the companies benefit from Siemens’ technical expertise and global presence.S. T of power — energy that used to be blown into the air as unused heat. as avoiding demand peaks saves companies lots of money. as key strategic steps are about to be taken. The company implements solar. Some environmental technology companies in the SVC portfolio call themselves “green dwarfs. With the injection of financing by SVC. biomass.” says Kulkarni. We’re active in all major markets — in Europe.7 billion). SVC invests €2 to €5 million per financing round in early-stage companies. The first such investment was made in German waste heat specialist Maxxtec AG. rail projects). Powerit Solutions customers exploit such capabilities to take advantage of demand response programs — special contracts that al- low providers to cap electricity supply at short notice. SVC is on track for success with Seattle-based Powerit Solutions. “This means our most important skill has to be the effective assessment of the risks of financing projects in relation to the potential earnings they offer. G. around 70 of its solutions can be found in the U.” Schnell explains. Transparent ended up winning. enabling them to recoup their initial investment very quickly. the company’s founder. especially in environmental solutions. 64 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 65 . a global network.. and CEO.” recalls CEO B. in which it acquired an interest in May 2009.. we’re pleased to have found a strong international partner to help us meet our financing requirements in the high-growth market for renewable energies. now that banks are restricting credit. the company acquired 25 percent of BGZ AG. That’s important. when air conditioners are running and the grid is in danger of overloading.S. of which SVC is a part. Siemens Venture Capital (SVC) financially participates in companies. for example at wineries. and industrial expertise. India in the late 1980s with the production of small industrial steam boilers.” This strategy makes it possible to reduce the power consumption not only of ongoing processes but also of processes to be carried out at a specific time in the future. many of which work with green technologies. whereas SPV provides financing for major projects. Rajesh Vakil. SVC has participated in over 150 companies — and a third of the firms in our current portfolio offer solutions that boost energy efficiency. Powerit. Ralf Schnell. “Our connection to Siemens got started when we were invited to participate in Siemens’ India Innovation Program 2008 competition. In May 2009. Both intend to conquer the global market with their green technologies. Today.S. is glad to have SPV on board as a new investor. Systems from Transparent Energy Systems generate up to 16 megawatts Project Financing with Siemens Major projects require solid financing. everyone wants to improve energy efficiency in production and have solutions tailored to their processes. “At that point. and almost immediately after that it began talking with SVC’s representative in India.
Result: Efficiency and life span are the keys to a healthy environmental balance sheet. and feeds it back Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 67 . energy-efficiency sleuth Henry Poiret fine tunes the environmental balance sheets of new locomotives for a railway company. tomorrow’s coal-fired power plants will have to operate at 700 degrees Celsius. and at the same time the dark-tinted panorama windows become transparent. 110 Miracle in the Laundry Room Bosch Siemens Hausgeräte has developed a dryer that uses only half the power of conventional products — an energy-efficiency world champion. “Welcome to my office. 66 In his special lab. raw materials.” It wasn’t easy getting an appointment with Henry “the Sniffer” Poiret — least of all as a journalist.Energy Efficiency | Scenario 2025 Highlights 78 Preparing for a Fiery Future To reach higher efficiencies. For the very first time. it’s publicity. Coal’s Cleaner Outlook Researchers are developing technologies for storing the CO2 generated by coal-fired power plants in underground depots. production. EnergySaving Sleuth The scene is New York City in 2025. “A few more kilowatt-hours saved.” Here. Poiret is assisted in his work by his avatar “Virtual Watson. revealing a view of Manhattan. 121 Timely Trains Detailed life cycle analyses help engineers design trains that are environmentally friendly in their operation. anything that consumes too much electricity. because if there’s one thing the 70year-old former FBI scientist can’t stand. urn the light off for heaven’s sake!” The elderly man hurries across the room. and recycling. is a specialist in environmental balance sheets who tracks down energy wasters of all kinds for his clients. he presents a new drive system that produces electricity as soon as the train brakes. Materials are being developed that can take the heat. In short. gas guzzlers. Poiret is an energy- T 2025 into the power grid. The bright ceiling lights go out. 82 106 Let there be Savings! Researchers have studied the lifecycles of lamps from production to disposal. many households have been able to efficiently produce their own heat and electricity using combined heat and power units. and claps his hands quickly three times.” he says with evident satisfaction. and climate killers — often remain elusive as well. 116 How to Own a Power Plant Since the beginning of 2009. or other resources must go. Poiret prefers to work out of sight. past his secretary. he allows a journalist to watch him at work — and to get an inside glimpse of his new lab. Henry Poiret. The trains and the entire production hall are represented as holograms. and the prodigious wrongdoers he strives to hunt down — power hogs and energy wasters. a former FBI scientist.
“Production of these panels is very energy-intensive. these systems no longer run at full capacity but are instead regulated in line with requirements. we had other suggestions. electricity and energy used for transportation. Even more impressively. Germany has a population of 82 million. so I can find out where energy and raw materials are wasted. authorities. = 37. Without him. and all that remains is a small white room — and Virtual Watson. Watson.5 liters of oil or cubic meters of gas per square meter per year.” The avatar strolls over to one of the locomotives and touches the underbody. It is therefore not surprising that all the old buildings in our hypothetical city have been renovated and new buildings have been built in line with low-energy or passive house standards using government funding. The most effective levers for reducing CO2 emissions by consumers are heat. Naturally. In 2020. wind. Such solutions are a specialty of Siemens’ Building Technologies Division. wants to use a new generation of environmentally-friendly high-speed trains.de . Japan and India. The German energy mix consists of 33.S. we’re going down. energy consumption could be cut by 56% in older buildings alone simply by renovating. which means that a hypothetical city of ten million would consume around 1. Whenever the locomotive is moving downhill or its brakes are applied. my holographic room uses quite a bit of power. and what’s more. “The drive system is not only gearless and ultra-efficient.” When the elevator doors open. the electricity comes entirely from renewable sources such as geothermal energy and hydropower.000 t / PJ) Hard coal 256 PJ 15% Nuclear energy (average eff. In those countries. Track. it also serves as a generator.500 t / PJ) Coal 57 PJ = 19% Heating 43 PJ = 27% Renewables 21 PJ = 7% District heating 18 PJ = 6% Electricity 162 PJ Natural gas 377 PJ 22% Households 270 PJ = 26% Mechanical energy 90 PJ = 55% Heating oil 56 PJ = 27% I&C technology 10 PJ = 6% Lighting 19 PJ = 11. solar. In the process we noticed that the designers wanted to use mainly aluminum panels from China — flawless in quality.” Industry and business consume 44% of this energy.5% petroleum. efficiency sleuth. and the transportation sector 30%.7%) 14. it’s unbearable. Mr. “Watson.1%). China. Watson.” Poiret gestures to Watson to climb aboard one of the trains. Old buildings consume 17–25 liters of oil or cubic meters of gas per square meter of space per year. As it turns out. The assistant takes a seat in one of the compartments and lights up a virtual pipe. That would considerably improve the train’s environmental balance sheet. the city council would surely not have succeeded in setting up an almost completely CO2-neutral district. “Allow me to introduce Virtual Watson. “Mr. and industry have all pledged to practice A Energy Picture of a City of Ten Million Based on Current German Use Energy-related CO2 emissions 97 million tons of CO2 per year Primary energy consumption 1. explain to our young friend what we’ve learned. The old fox had a hand in that too. As if by a magical force. 11% nuclear power and around 7. residents.5% (54. households 26%. This is why we have recommended using aluminum panels from Iceland and Norway. solar (0. “I’ve set up a small workroom in the basement. “The entire locomotive production process can be simulated down here..” Virtual Watson straightens his perfectly simulated bow tie. cutting losses is the key factor in terms of energy generation. a so-called “passive house” needs just 1.5% Water (3.S. For comparison.5%) From brown coal 20 million tons = 20. “But now let’s get to work. it accumulates braking energy.715 PJ. you could even eat them. Electricity is also needed for ventilation and air conditioning systems. Here. biomass (3.” explains Poiret. consumers wind up with only 1. but they still haven’t integrated a system of CO2 storage.” “Very well. Russia. Slowly. the whole train is completely recyclable and contains no toxic substances whatsoever. The situation is similar for industrial and commercial buildings. one quadrillion joules). “That’s where I also show customers my results from time to time.” says Poiret.5% 14% Hard coal (average efficiency at German power plants = 38%) From hard coal 21 million tons = 22% (83. heat and CO2 sensors determine whether rooms are too cold or stuffy.” calls Poiret. Heat is a good place to start. So they emit a relatively large amount of CO2.6%) 23% Brown coal (average eff. which in turn require some 680 PJ of primary energy and produce 34 million tons of CO2. waste (0. geothermal and other sources. www. We invited the Europeans to our lab. for example. “Of course. So how can we turn things around? What would happen if we began using the most modern and energy-efficient technologies available for cars. “turn off that sound track immediately. In our efficient city. His secretary hands me a cup of coffee and urges me into an elevator at the end of the room. U. but also produces it. As a result. I&C. whose experts search for “energy leaks” in everything from hospitals and shopping centers to government agencies. in which process heat and space heating account for 67% of energy consumption.5% 23. and the air has a metallic taste. the production hall disappears. and oil is a major cause of the greenhouse effect.5% Industry + commercial 460 PJ = 44% A hypothetical German megacity would require approximately 231 PJ of electrical energy per year (= 64 TWh / a). and energy consumption in the energy sector itself: 670 PJ = 39% Electricity generation mix Others Heating oil 4% 1. and installing heat-insulated windows. because 53% of site energy in Germany is used solely to generate heat for offices and homes. as well as heating up household water and supplying process heat in industry. working on half-finished trains. a hologram. “Bobby. We are in the middle of a cavernous assembly hall. “But I can hardly bear to turn off Mr. power plants and household appliances? If we could start from scratch — how much energy would a hypothetical city with a population of ten million people require? It turns out that a comparison with a conventional city in an industrialized country leads to some surprising results… Consider the figures for Germany.5% Share 19. sir. he has made a name for himself by cracking a number of spectacular cases.” Florian Martini nyone familiar with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report (p. Watson is an avatar. Mr.6 million) 217 PJ = 69% Trucks 44 PJ = 14% Air transportation 32 PJ = 10% Local/long-distance rail 13 PJ = 4% Buses 6 PJ = 2% Ships 3 PJ = 1% Cities: Many energy-efficient solutions that could substantially reduce power consumption are already available. this translates into power plants with a total output of approximately 11 gigawatts.” the master says. Arbeitsgemeinschaft Energiebilanzen 2009. A Better Energy Picture energy conservation. According to the Arbeitsgemeinschaft Energiebilanzen — a federation of seven German energy associations — heat accounts for 80% of total energy consumption in private households. while other sensors register if rooms are occupied and assess how much fresh air is needed. biomass. A study of a hypothetical city — the world champion in energy efficiency — provides insight into how such solutions could work in practice.278 Terawatt-hours (TWh) Natural gas 161 PJ = 54% From petroleum 36 million tons = 37% (63.1%). 22% natural gas. and determine the best ways to save even more. the entire train becomes transparent. Incidentally. “In theory.5% (106.100 petajoules of primary energy per year (1 PJ equals 1015J.045 PJ of so-called “site energy. An entirely new technology.715 PJ / a (59 million tons hard coal equivalent) Losses in power generation and transmission. and they believe they can maximize their chances with Poiret’s assistance. “The manufacturer has already transferred the data to me. conventional new buildings require only ten liters/cubic meters per year and low-energy houses five to seven. The master sleuth has taken time out for our magazine and has even agreed to give us an exclusive look at his new laboratory. just like the entire hall. they will even become valuable fertilizer after they have been used. “Watson. 15% hard coal. for example. Watson has just made himself nice and comfortable atop what is essentially a compost heap: All the seat covers are completely environmentally compatible.” he admits.5% Kitchen appliances 10 PJ = 16% Freezers/refrigerators 10 PJ = 16% Washing machines. I am met by a wave of loud factory noise.5% power from water. for instance. “I still have a thing or two to do here.” Poiret takes a sip of coffee. which is the sixth-biggest energy consumer after the U. 11% brown coal. At the moment.Energy Efficiency | Scenario 2025 | Urban Energy Analysis Energy requirements and CO2 emissions of ten million people (based on figures for Germany in 2007). while the design stage was still under way.” he explains. welding robots are everywhere. Converting this primary energy into usable forms of energy leads to losses due to energy consumption by power generation facilities themselves and power transmission. We’re not playing a computer game here. It’s clear that burning fossil fuels such as gas. geothermal (0. give the lad something to drink and start up the lab. It feeds the power back into the electrical grid or uses it for its onboard systems — so the train not only consumes electrical energy. wind (6. he couldn’t shake it anyway.” Poiret nods in approval and browses through pages on his OLED display. In our hypothetical city. office 14 PJ = 22% Lighting 6 PJ = 10% Others 2 PJ = 4% From natural gas 20 million tons = 20.” Poiret types a combination of keys into his PDA. And many of us remember what happened last summer. Poiret is ready to help a European manufacturer of railway systems. when the yellow cabs in Manhattan finally went green thanks to electric drive technology. energy consumption 68 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 69 Source: DIW. = 49. coal.ag-energiebilanzen. Unfortunately.000 t / PJ) Brown coal 188 PJ 11% Delivered energy use: 1.5% Nuclear energy 189 PJ 11% Transportation 315 PJ = 30% Fuels 308 PJ Electricity 7 PJ Passenger cars (5. and together we took the simulated trains apart literally down to the last screw. A figure that seems strangely transparent glides forward from behind a locomotive. Watson is expecting us.4%). So it announced a competition — with the contract to be awarded to the company whose locomotive can demonstrate the best energy-efficiency and most favorable environmental balance sheet throughout its service life. dryer 9 PJ = 15% Hot water 11 PJ = 17% TV. and not exactly inexpensive. = 35%) Natural gas (average eff.7%). schools and universities.” Poiret pulls an ultra-thin folding OLED display from his pocket. Heat thus offers huge savings potential that can easily be exploited. In recent years.045 PJ/a Petroleum 576 PJ 33. the Europeans don’t want to miss the opportunity to submit a concept. According to Germany’s Federal Environment Agency. Given the current German energy mix. the local New York transit operator.” says Poiret. 7) can no longer seriously doubt that climate change is a reality.” The din subsides in seconds. The country currently consumes 14. Space heating 100 PJ Process heat 198 PJ Heating oil 41 PJ = 14% 1 petajoule (PJ) = 0. insulating outer walls and basement ceilings.000 t / PJ) Space heating 208 PJ Electricity 62 PJ Natural gas 110 PJ = 53% District heating 8% Renewables 12% Wind/water/ other 129 PJ = 7. however. “You don’t have to extend your hand. show us the front drive section. but rather inappropriate with regard to the train’s environmental balance sheet. We succeeded in hunting down all the environmental polluters before it was too late.” reveals the energyefficiency detective.5%). And in China electricity still comes to a large extent from coal-fired power plants — they have become more efficient in recent years.
Windmills. an efficient city could reduce its consumption of primary energy and its CO2 emissions by 50%. and consume 30% less en- ple. all of these measures cost money. Consumption would thus rise to 18 billion tons of oil equivalent (toe) per year. virtually no one knew how much electricity was being used by which machines in a factory. The potential for savings here is huge and easy to exploit because energy-saving lamps can reduce consumption by up to 80% compared to conventional light bulbs. The IEA study says developing countries will be responsible for 74 percent of this increase in primary energy consumption — with China and India alone accounting for 45 percent. Environment and Energy estimates that replacing old household appliances throughout Germany would reduce annual electricity consumption by 7. and will thus begin buying more and more electrical appliances. thanks to lightweight materials and regenerative braking systems. metal. This reduces fuel consumption by around 20%. Local government pays for the investment in installments financed from the energy savings achieved. Siemens offers a concept here that is perfect for all sectors where large amounts of waste heat are produced. especially since taxes and toll fees had made driving vehicles with high CO2 emissions expensive. Siemens plans and installs new technology that guarantees energy savings. both of these countries will meet most of their energy needs with coal because.” says Professor Peter Hennicke. and has therefore included in its 11th Five-Year Plan strict stipulations for reducing environmental pollution and improving energy efficiency. stoves. as compared to 11. and the resulting gas is used to drive a turbine. This analysis of a hypothetical city clearly demonstrates that a variety of solutions already exist for achieving major reductions in energy consumption. electronic ballasts and dimmers that automatically adjust to natural light can generate lighting-related electricity savings of up to 80%. process steam and heat are sent via pipes to nearby factories and apartment buildings. Saving at Home. transportation and power plant technology. the only visible sign of civilization on our planet. industry. Environment. The public swimming pools now save 1. which last around 50 times longer than incandescent light bulbs. The concept has also been successfully implemented in hospitals and universities. 70 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2007 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2007 71 . This is a climate-change nightmare. The new buses and trains are comfortable. Emissions can be cleaned and CO2 can be sequestered. Waste heat vaporizes a liquid. while a large portion of household waste is converted into fuel for power plants. Our efficient city has also plugged other energy leaks. renewable energy technologies are right around the corner. The software works its way through processes at a factory and finds out how much energy is consumed by each machine — and when. and the failure to use and produce it efficiently and economically. freezers. 40% of all the primary energy consumed in Germany is used to produce electricity. Miserly Motors. and Energy. That was too much for the efficiency champions. Green Energy Production. emitting 15 million tons of CO2 per year. that corresponds to emissions of two billion tons of CO2 per year — or the emissions produced by 700 million passenger cars. there will be eight billion people living on our planet in 2020. coal remains abundant and is currently cheaper than renewable energy sources. Thanks to the combined potential for energy conservation in households. all of this will require huge amounts of energy. at least as seen from space. But Siemens has developed analysis software that enables operators to obtain such data. Siemens renovated 11 municipal indoor pools by replacing boilers and installing more-efficient heat recovery and warm water processing systems. With each revolution. Given the current global energy mix. especially when you consider the fact that facilities built today will remain in operation for the next 30 years. that’s just half the story. solar cells can be found on top of nearly every public and private building. Tim Schröder Light at the End of the Tunnel The world’s population is growing — as is its thirst for energy. This light is. and once the contract expires after around ten years. In other words. More than anything else. washing machines and dishwashers. And given that local governments generally operate on tight budgets. pushing the fuel conversion rate to over 80%. So too can LED lamps. Energy consumption can also be reduced in production facilities. A stronauts working at the International Space Station (ISS) are treated to a spectacular view as they orbit the earth. resource depletion. For examelectricity. its 375 megawatts could supply the population of a city like Hamburg. waste heat is also harnessed in the efficient city. In other words. 27). we have to exploit the most effective. which is then transferred to an electric motor. which accounts for 28% of delivered energy. which today can convert more than 58% of the energy contained in gas into electricity. That was reason enough to start using the extensive and modernized public transit network. unlike other raw materials. in fact. Putting the Brakes on Energy Use. As prosperity spreads. which is expected to increase by 55 percent by 2030.63 million euros per year — or one third of their previous energy costs. In the past. Up until recently.6 million passenger cars were on the road in this hypothetical city. such as the glass. The country put 174 coal-fired power plants online in 2006 alone. according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). State-of-the-art mirror louvre luminaires. the earth grows dark. Residents of the efficient city also contribute to energy conservation. which averages out to one new plant every two days. Motors account for nearly 70% of total industrial power consumption. they don’t have to be developed — they could be implemented right now. A lot of energy can be saved here by using intelligent and more efficient motors. these people will seek a higher standard of living. and things won’t get any better if current trends hold up. who make better use of primary energy in facilities like combined-cycle power plants. Although electricity accounts for only 22% of all delivered energy consumed in Germany.4 billion toe in 2005. 5. coal or nuclear power plants. pharmaceutical and cement industries. which up until now have often been equipped with several thousand fluorescent lamps. This process reveals hidden potential for optimization and identifies energy guzzlers. Future versions of the plant are expected to achieve an efficiency of 63% within ten years. But solutions are in sight. where a 570-megawatt combined-cycle plant is being built for energy supplier E. in many buildings can be cut by 20%–40% without a major investment in new technology. After all. by streams of coal. Renewable energy sources also help reduce CO2 emissions in our imaginary city. all savings flow directly to the client. In the meantime. especially in emerging markets. Earth will be home to eight billion people. “In order to contain the associated risks to the climate. former head of the Wuppertal Institute for Climate. The IEA predicts that global primary energy consumption will increase by 55 percent between 2005 and 2030 if the current environmental policy framework remains unchanged (see p. where it can often halve energy consumption. which in turn will necessitate the construction of new factories and offices. ergy than their predecessors. “Energy is a necessity of life. Of course. Internet-based information and efficient traffic guidance systems are helping to prevent traffic jams and facilitate parking. Performance contracting particularly pays off in old municipal buildings. Motorists use hybrid vehicles that store braking energy in their batteries. In the town of Irsching. and other products. says Hennicke. By 2020. as the consumption of such devices has been cut by 30%–75% since 1990. whose losses total anywhere between 50% and 65%.ON. Here. this 13-meter-long gas turbine is as heavy as six diesel locomotives — but has 100 times the output. According to the UN.” China is aware of the problem. Siemens is already demonstrating that efficiency ratings of more than 60% could soon be the norm. The Wuppertal Institute for Climate. which is increasingly being quenched.Energy Efficiency | Urban Energy Analysis | Trends A blanket of illumination as seen from space is a reminder of our planet’s hunger for energy. Naturally.4 PJ — the equivalent of the annual electricity requirement of nearly five million people.9 terawatt-hours (billion kWh) or 28. The energy-efficient city also exploits associated heat. such as losses from the electric motors used in drives. and least expensive potential solution: energy efficiency. In fact. Lighting systems in this hypothetical highefficiency city would be completely revamped as well. for example. It also converted operation from oil to gas. Efficiency can stretch supplies and cut pollution. Moreover. It will be possible to save even more energy when electric drives and electric brakes are integrated directly into each vehicle’s wheels. and billions of lights 390 kilometers below join to form a shimmering meshwork that extends across land masses like a spider web. solar thermal and geothermal plants and biomass power plants also provide their share of Replacing old appliances throughout Germany would save enough electricity for 5 million people. energy savings performance contracting can offer an ideal solution. And new. we’re still far from doing that. conveyor belts and pumps. China already has a huge hunger for coal. Our energy-efficient city has also addressed the secondbiggest energy consumer — transportation. Lighting accounts for more than 10% of electricity consumption in Germany and nearly 19% worldwide. Weighing 444 tons. buildings. cars. Such a system doesn’t burden local budgets. The principle is always the same. The implications of this become clear when you consider that replacing all coal-fired plants worldwide with the latest combined-cycle plants would result in over four billion tons less CO2 being released into the atmosphere each year. fastest. Almost half of all electricity consumed in the household is used by refrigerators. In Berlin. The sea of light continually expands as the earth’s population grows. “But it can also be a curse if you look at it in terms of climate change. Our city wouldn’t be an efficiency champion if it hadn’t also cut power consumption. which in turn generates electricity.” Unfortunately. Purchasing new appliances is the best investment here. it first has to be generated in gas. travel at frequent intervals. Here. New technologies from Siemens are pointing the way here.
who coordinates “Green IT” projects at Siemens IT Solutions and Services. “We’re ready to start construction of a major IGCC facility anytime. as an oversized trailer had shown up carrying a new turbine for the town’s power plant. according to Hennicke. Germany. IGCC plants transform coal and other fuels like oil and asphalt into a synthetic gas that drives a turbine. One approach involves separating the carbon dioxide created by the coal-burning process. as the EU-sponsored project is known.” says Hu Shihai. operating these computers requires the energy generated by 14 power plants in the 1. It was built at Siemens’ gas turbine plant in Berlin. with an output of 375 megawatts. “Computer centers could reduce electricity consumption by more than one-third if they switched over to more efficient technologies. has been involved in the development of optimized IGCC concepts for years now. For all its negative publicity. the CO2 can be separated relatively easily. 82). are already reaping the benefits of more efficient energy use. ranging from extremely efficient computer chips to plug-in hybrid vehicles that “fill up” on sunlight. which means climate-friendly coal power plants may become a reality.” A country such as Japan could reduce CO2 emissions by 70 per- Unmatched Efficiency The world’s largest gas turbine. Deputy Managing Director of the China Huaneng Group. in addition to focusing on producing energy more efficiently. the Huaneng Yuhuan coal-fired facility (see p. are pioneering. New materials and manufacturing techniques are being studied in an effort to achieve a temperature of 700 degrees Celsius and pressure of 350 bars. A perfect example is the state of California. Such projects will become more and more important in the face of rising energy prices and growing CO2 emissions. “If we use the same technology in future projects. Cutting down on energy consumption here would also produce impressive results. One promising technique is coal gasification in Integrated example. From this gas. 78) as a means of increasing the efficiency of coal-fired power plants. “if the U. buildings account for around 40 percent of global energy consumption and 21 percent of CO2 emissions. we should be trying to use it much more efficiently as well. “Moreover. five meters in height. for example. since the higher the temperature. Only at those new high levels can an efficiency rating of 50 percent be achieved. The world’s most extensive study of underground CO2-storage possibilities is currently being carried out in the small town of Ketzin near Berlin by scientists from the German Research Center for Geosciences in Potsdam (see p. whose strict environmental regulations make it an eldorado for companies that produce clean technologies. In combination with a downstream steam turbine. which is around 100 degrees and 65 bars more than the norm in today’s power plants.000 such energy performance contracting projects worldwide. Thanks to a clever energy-saving model and building management system from Siemens. The residents were worried that the turbine. with only marginal additional costs. Development engineers are also looking at other concepts for making coal-fired power plants more climate friendly. which remain in great demand. the more efficient the system will be. Germany. The Siemens setup not only helps the environment.” he adds. carbon dioxide has one positive characteristic: it has led to a huge innovation boom in the areas of energy efficiency and environmentally-friendly technologies. “That’s why. they appeared in droves again — this time out of concern for the pole. came out in droves in Spring 2007 to witness the traditional raising of their white and blue maypole.” says Dr. of years. it will help ensure that a new combined cycle power plant achieves a record-breaking efficiency of more than 60 percent when it goes into operation in 2011. experts are trying to get turbines to withstand extremely high steam temperatures. would even come close to exploiting its potential for renewable energy.000megawatt class. CO2SINK. This is significant.” 74 percent of the increase in global primary energy consumption will take place in emerging economies.” says David Murphy. According to Stanford University. “Siemens. This was not the case. since one percentage point of higher efficiency translates for a mid-sized power plant into around 100. could pose a threat to their beloved maypole. it’s going to take time before such facilities can operate economically. which they renovated as a precautionary measure prior to the turbine’s arrival. Also in need of an energy diet are the approximately 30 million servers around the world that keep the Internet up and running. are working on socalled 700-degree technology (see p. CO2SINK.” cautions Hennicke. among them Siemens. 85).Energy Efficiency | Trends | World’s Largest Gas Turbine The world’s largest gas turbine measures 13 meters in length. and storing it below ground to keep it out of the atmosphere. Here. “Still. who will depositing 60. But before such plants can be built. Take. which measured 13 meters in length. as the savings potential is huge. after all.000 fewer tons of CO2 per year. Operators of an indoor swimming pool in Vienna. or perhaps millions. This would amount to nearly CO2-free electricity production (see p. in China’s electrical power generation industry. 77). five meters in height and weighs 444 tons. Since November 2007. so-called ultra super-critical steam turbine units and generators from Siemens have made possible an efficiency rating of 45 percent at Huaneng Yuhuan. The problem is that the legal framework for efficient CO2 sequestration still hasn’t been clarified. however. for cent between now and 2050 through more efficient utilization of energy. According to the IEA.000 per year on “We have to exploit the most effective. the pool facility now produces around 600 tons less greenhouse gas per year than in the past. already have IGCC power plants with Siemens technology in operation. and weighed 444 tons. R 72 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2007 73 . That’s 15 percentage points higher than the global average for hardcoal power plants and seven percentage points more than the EU average. entered trial service in December 2007.” heating and water costs. Geologists believe that CO2 can be trapped for thousands.000 tons of carbon dioxide in special rock strata 700 meters below ground by 2010. China’s most modern electrical power plant. Siemens has already implemented over 1. Scientists at Siemens’ Energy unit in Mülheim an der Ruhr. Christiane Schmid from Siemens Fuel Gasification Technology GmbH. it’s also saving the pool’s operator €200. a number of hurdles will have to be overcome. Three weeks later. examines how the gas reacts after being pumped underground and will determine whether it could threaten to find its way back to the surface. It’s a winwin situation for companies and the environment alike. specialists supervising the transport were actually more concerned about a bridge at the entrance to the town. says Hennicke. in Freiberg. we would see a huge wave of innovation that would bring us a lot closer to our goal of providing energy to billions of people in a sustainFlorian Martini able manner. leaving only pure hydrogen behind. Austria. and locations where CO2 might be stored have yet to be found and tested.” Spain and the Netherlands. The solutions being developed there. it will make a huge contribution to improving energy efficiency and environmental protection Gasification Combined Cycle (IGCC) power plants. and least expensive potential solution: energy efficiency.S. esidents of the town of Irsching in Bavaria.
however. the unit was equipped with 3. They increased the amount of air and combustion gases that flow through the turbine each second. the more economical it will be. the Mainz-Wiesbaden power plant. which causes output to rise more than the losses in the turbine. Efficiency Record. “The price per megawatt (MW) of output and efficiency correlate with the size of the turbine — in other words. Siemens’ project manager Wolfgang Winter points to one of the walls and explains that it is the connection to the air intake unit. Relatively speaking. and sound absorbers. which provides heat insulation. which was built at Siemens’ Energy plant in Berlin. It was like a final check before a space mission — and the countdown was under way. which draws in fresh air from the outside. where it was loaded onto a truck for the final 40 kilometers. “That’s because the highest temperature the blade surfaces are allowed to be exposed to is 950 degrees. had an efficiency of 52 percent. electrical cables were properly secured. The component will then be removed. filters. Siemens also built the plant’s new Block 4. various canals. There’s good reason for Siemens’ decision to use one giant turbine rather than the two smaller ones E. as technicians still had to test all systems to ensure that the gas lines were pressure-tight. As turbine blades spin. and they raised the temperature of the combustion gases. or reworked. The blades are also actively cooled. and sells the electricity it produces at the plant. The blades at the very front (the hottest part of the turbine) also have fine holes. the unit channels in 800 kilograms of air per second when the facility operates at full capacity — an amount that would exhaust the air inside the hall in just a few minutes. the turbine is carefully positioned. “Block 4 is our project at the moment. which is 30 meters high. But it will be worth the effort because the gas turbine and a downstream steam turbine will set a new world record in 2011 with an efficiency rating of over 60 percent. as the turbine first needed to be tested over the following 18 months. “It was a nice coincidence that the energy company E. But there was still plenty of work to do after the plant was built in 2007. The plant houses two small gas turbines and a steam turbine. Siemens uses the existing infrastructure here. the thing that stands out at the facility is a section of 21 office trailers housing the turbine’s measurement stations. The new turbine’s output of 375 megawatts. One thing they did was lower the heat transfer from the combustion gas to the metal by applying a protective thermal coating consisting of two layers: a 300-micrometer-thick undercoating directly on the metal and a thin ceramic layer on top of that. The trailers look tiny next to the turbine hall.ON-Ruhrgas.500 kilometers to get to Irsching — initially by water along the Havel river. 2007.000 sensors that measure just about everything modern tech- nology can register — from temperature and pressure to mechanical stress and material strain. “In 1990. Weighing in at 444 tons. and that all valves could open and close quickly and reliably. replaced. covering them with a thin insulating film. the largest gas turbine produced 150 MW. at which point they begin to glow red. computers linked to the sensors call attention to the problem immediately. which equals that of 17 jumbo jet engines. which increases efficiency. 74 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2007 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2007 75 .” explains Willibald Fischer.ON Kraftwerke GmbH.ON was planning to expand the power station in Irsching. Energy project manager in Irsching. with ignition scheduled for mid-December. massive centrifugal forces come into play. and.” says Winter.” says Fischer. is enough to supply power to the population of a city the size of Hamburg. traveled 1. the Rhine. two percentage points higher than the previous titleholder.Energy Efficiency | World’s Largest Gas Turbine The world’s largest turbine. But that was not that important in 2007. This odyssey was undertaken because the only way to truly test such a large and powerful turbine is to put it into operation at a power plant. If it gets any hotter. Despite its massive size.000 times the earth’s gravitational pull. or fails. Our gas turbine has an output of 375 MW. where the giant turbine is installed. less fuel will be burned and 40. Most of the measuring technology is hidden. the bigger it is. Siemens built a combined cycle plant at the Bavarian facility (Block 5) for E.” Ceramic Coating. the material begins to lose its stability and oxidizes. It then went down the Main-Danube Canal to Kelheim.” says Wolfgang Winter. If a component is defective. The end of each blade is exposed to a maximum force of 10. and the Main. in conjunction with a The turbine produces enough electricity for the population of a city the size of Hamburg. as they are hollow inside and are exposed to cool airflows generated by the compressor. who is responsible for development of the turbine. like a protective shield.” Engineers at Siemens Energy overcame two challenges while designing the turbine. In combination with a 190-MW steam turbine it utilizes more than 60 percent of the energy content of the gas fuel. Equipped with a special housing.ON will put into operation next door. each of which is 200 meters high.500 degrees Celsius across metal turbine blades. “It’s tricky when you send gas heated to 1. therefore. 75-MW steam turbine.200 to 1. from which air is released that then flows across the blades. Siemens engineers have been creative in tackling this problem.000 tons less carbon dioxide (CO2) per year will be emitted into the atmosphere than would be the case with the Mainz-Wiesbaden plant. which is the The world’s largest gas turbine has an output of 375 megawatts — which equals the power of 17 jumbo jet engines. the new facility’s metal facade makes it seem light and modern compared to the plant’s three old concrete towers from the 1960s and ’70s. To this end. purchases gas from E.
” Trial Run. Any improvements in efficiency will therefore have a substantial impact on the country’s consumption of resources. On the other hand. These used to be cast and then left to harden. After successful completion of all tests in August of 2009.” says Fan Xiaxia. The tests were successful beyond expectations. That everything worked as planned was revealed by the 18-month trial period that began in November 2007. “If we use the same technology for future projects. Indeed. “I’ve seen a lot of 76 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 77 .S.000 GW by 2011. it’s obvious the country’s already long past the stage of being a developing nation. and 570 MW when used as a combined cycle power plant. based on 2005 levels. China is anything but frugal: for every unit of GDP. “When you look at the most recent power plants in China.5 billion tons of coal were burned in Chinese power plants. and sustainable. which is operated by Huaneng Power International Inc.” Balling explains. Bernhard Gerl power plants over the last 25 years. The turbine will make use of the generator’s 600-degree-Celsius gas to generate steam in a heat exchanger. practically all the gas passes across the blades and is utilized.” says Balling.” With so much potential for progress.3 bars. China’s most advanced coal-fired power plant. By way of comparison. “It’s the most energy-efficient and environmentally compatible coal-fired power plant anywhere in China. Huaneng is relaxed about the prospect of Yuhuan soon being overtaken in the efficiency stakes. The blades of the new mega turbine are made of a nickel alloy.100 kWh) or the U. meaning that the new mega turbine is on the market.” This approach fits perfectly with the political strategy of the People’s Republic. and greenhouse gas emissions.” says Lutz Kahlbau. They are therefore extremely resistant to breaking. that figure had risen to 720 GW. and sustainability” — areas in F which China intends to excel every bit as much as in summer’s 2008 sporting events in Beijing. which make it possible to produce temperatures of 600 degrees Celsius and a pressure of 262. A release for distribution was issued in August 2009. this translates into an annual reduction of 100. Bernhard Bartsch Olympic Efficiencies Generating capacity has long been regarded as the Achilles heel of China’s boom. The generators are also from Siemens. Assistant General Manager at China Huaneng Group. Such efficiency is possible thanks to the use of so-called ultra-supercritical steam turbines from Siemens (see p. However.” says Hu. “That should enable us to break the magical barrier of 50 percent efficiency and thus significantly reduce CO2 emissions compared to today’s levels.S. The country has already surpassed the U. In fact. substantially less than in Germany (7. The buzzwords of China’s latest wave of modernization were “efficiency. “In fact. Leading the way is the Yuhuan plant. things are now quiet in Irsching.” Siemens is already targeting new records for future power plants. the Chinese looked upon the Games as a golden opportunity to not only put on a huge sporting festival but also to showcase their country’s recent achievements. According to official statistics. “The Chinese administration has categorically said that the country’s economy can’t be allowed to grow at the expense of the environment. one every other day.. With posters for the summer’s Beijing Olympics plastered across billboards throughout the provinces. when this figure is compared to economic output. As much as 73 percent of the country’s electricity is generated from coal. Engineers also optimized the shape of the blades with the help of 3D simulation programs. China’s most modern power plants are among the best anywhere in the world. Back in 2003. Not that there’s anything artificially enhanced about the performance of the Yuhuan facility.5 percentage points. China demonstrated that it takes the threat of global warming very seriously. it is now possible to announuce the turbine’s power rating: 375 MW in pure gas operation. according to a study by the International Energy Agency (IEA). the People’s Republic consumes 3. it will have a huge impact on the efficiency and environmental impact of China’s power industry.6 percent every year since the start of the reform era in the early 1980s.5 bars in the main steam line. and is now forecast to top 1. as the world’s largest producer of greenhouse gases and is aware of the responsibility that goes with this role. it’s firmly hoped that the plant will lead the way for China’s other power generators. If everything is found to be in order. who was President of Siemens Power Generation China until mid 2009. But now the blades on the giant turbine in Irsching contain alloys that have mostly been grown as single crystals through the utilization of special cooling processes. 174 coal-fired power plants in the 500-megawatt class entered service in China — in other words. environmentally compatible. per capita electricity consumption is still low by international standards and. Only through this combined cycle process can the energy in the gas be so effectively exploited as to achieve the record efficiency of 60 percent – a record in terms of eco-friendliness.Energy Efficiency | Coal-Fired Power in China Yuhuan. During initial negotiations for the follow-up to the Kyoto Protocol. 2008 was just the latest in a whole series of big years. After thorough analysis of the test results. the country's energy demand has risen by an average of 5. The turbine will now be overhauled and disassembled.” he adds.” says Lothar Balling.S.000-megawatt generating units. Each off the measures mentioned above produces only a fractional increase in efficiency or output. “Our aim is to realize this potential worldwide.000 tons of carbon dioxide. For a medium-sized power plant that has an installed capacity of 700 MW and operates for 7. environmental compatibility. China needs to overcome huge challenges if it is to remain on the path of economic growth. That’s because enhanced efficiency. In 2007. which is very much a winning performance in this field. or China. the People’s Republic was determined to show the world that it still has a lot of potential. by building more-efficient coal-fired power plants.780 kilowatt-hours (kWh) in 2005. The blade-wall gap is made even smaller due to the turbine’s operation in a cone. In addition. “That’s why the 11th Five-Year Plan contains very strict targets on the reduction of pollution and improvements in energy efficiency. During the overhaul.000 hours a year. This means that the shaft can be shifted several millimeters during operation until the blades nearly touch the housing — a practice known as “hydraulic gap optimization. The latest demonstration of China’s commitment to these goals — a commitment endorsed by the entire Beijing administration — is on display in Zhejiang province. which is home to China’s most modern power plant. whereby the edges were designed to keep the gap between the blades and the turbine wall as small as possible. around 1. crystallites were made to grow in the same direction as the centrifugal forces. Record Efficiency. (13. Despite having increased gross domestic product by a nominal factor of 13 over the period since 1990. But thanks to new technology from Siemens. “We’ve known for a long time that Siemens supplies the very latest technology and high-quality systems.” On the other hand. power generation in the People’s Republic is becoming increasingly efficient. Vice President of Huaneng Power International Inc. boasts a record-breaking efficiency of 45 percent — thanks to ultra-supercritical steam turbines supplied by Siemens (small photo). In 2006 alone. the unit will be reassembled minus its specialized measuring equipment.640 kWh).” says Hu Shihai. The facility boasts an efficiency of 45 percent. China had a total installed generating capacity of 400 gigawatts (GW). the only source of energy that China possesses in any considerable quantities and which therefore doesn’t have to be imported at high cost. and even in environmentally-progressive Europe it’s only 38 percent. a figure similar to that of the U. “The next generation of coal-fired plants will operate at steam temperatures of 700 degrees Celsius and pressures in excess of 300 bars. engineers will install an additional steam turbine on the shaft at the end of the generator. “Huaneng needs this kind of advanced technology to help it develop as a company. the pressure in a car tire is around 3.5 times as much energy as the international average. environmental compatibility. on average. 2008 won’t be the last big year in China’s calendar. But taken together they add up to a new record. of which the two most recent — Units 3 and 4 — entered service in November 2007. and last year it leapt by a massive 20 percent. south of Shanghai. Later. The plant operator agrees. fuel costs. equivalent of each cubic centimeter of such a blade weighing as much as an adult human being. “Efficient and environmental power plant technology has a big role to play in reducing CO2 emissions. was only around 1. As a result. By 2007. The average efficiency of power plants in China is 30 percent. and sustainability are a must for China’s electricity industry. a rise of a single percentage point in efficiency brings fuel costs down by 2. even by international standards. Driving the country’s growth is not only industry but also private consumption. 78). The Yuhuan coal-fired plant consists of four 1. the government plans to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 200 million tons over the same period. and many now investing in washing machines and air conditioning as well. and all of its components will be thoroughly examined. with great efficiency and comparatively low CO2 emissions.” Energy Appetite. Vice President Steam Power Plants at Siemens. but the design and performance of those at Yuhuan are really special. The target is to raise energy efficiency 20 percent by 2010. In June 2006 Beijing published its own roadmap as to how to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases. with most Chinese households now owning a refrigerator and TV. as there are no longer any grain boundaries between the crystallites in the alloy that can rupture.
For example. The experiment is relentless — and that’s as it should be. For a steam turbine. That’s not exactly peanuts in a turbine requiring some 200 tons of the metal alloys. which are a sophisticated mix of high-strength metals like nickel and chromium. after they’ve been forged to form steam turbine shafts a meter or more in diameter and are enduring enormous centrifugal forces and temperatures of 700 degrees Celsius. traditional metals just wouldn’t be able to withstand the temperatures. n a materials lab at Siemens’ Fossil Power Generation Division in Mülheim an der Ruhr. head of Product Line Management for Steam Turbines.” he says.Energy Efficiency | Steam Turbine Materials In a Siemens factory in Mülheim an der Ruhr. with the nickel alloy only being employed in the hottest area. “And we want to make as much use as possible of these materials. tomorrow‘s coal-fired power plants will use hotter steam. In addition. and thus emits only 761 grams of CO2. “That will break in a few days. customers demand a working lifetime of at least 200. This metallic martyrdom is helping engineers prepare for the coal-fired power station of the future. for which Siemens delivered two 1. Ordeal by Fire. but instead can be composed of different alloys depending on the temperatures different areas are subjected to. with an efficiency of around 46 percent. turbine materials will have to be able to survive extraordinary stresses. In a project led by Trianel Power-Projektgesellschaft. To reduce material costs. Pfitzinger means nickel alloys.” says Pfitzinger. which is fed into the generator. Such a step would have significant consequences because each percentage point in improved efficiency — if applied to all coal burning power plants — translates into 260 million tons less CO2 each year . “Temperature is the key factor. Weights drag relentlessly at rods made of new alloys.000 and 1. In other words. Exotic Mix. thus also reducing CO2 emissions. A glance at any physics book reveals the principle behind the heat engine — and that’s exactly what a fossilfuel-fired power plant is. Preparing for a Fiery Future To achieve 50 percent efficiency and cut environmental impact. the steam entering the turbine should be as hot as possible and the steam leaving it as cool as possible. By new materials. After processing — a painstaking process — they cost five to ten times as much as the chromium steel used today. burns only 320 grams of coal per kilowatt-hour. The objective is to increase efficiency by four percentage points over that achieved at 600 degrees. the turbine need not be made entirely of nickel alloy. they release between 1. and to cut coal consumption by six to seven percent. where a pencil-thin metal rod clamped at each end glows a dull red. Their aim is to achieve 50 percent efficiency by 2015. or some eight billion tons a year. including how to deal with different 78 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 79 . scientists prepare turbine materials for ultra-high temperatures (left). But as Werner-Holger Heine. the situation is complex. “However. the Block Waigaoqiao III in China. metals die a slow death.000-megawatt turbines. However. the meter-thick shaft can be forged in several pieces. The plant is scheduled to go into operation by 2012. Materials specialist Hans Hanswillemenke indicates a test behind a plexiglass sheet. which should be much more efficient and use as little fuel as possible in order to keep atmospheric emissions to a minimum. It turns out that the useful energy produced by such plants is determined by the difference between the temperature source and the temperature sink. To achieve this ambitious goal. As a result. Testing turbine materials at hellish temperatures and centrifugal forces is part of the picture. so we’re going to go straight to 700 degrees. these power plants are not good enough for Siemens Fossil Power Generation Division and the power plant operators.” says Dr. with only a pinch of iron. and thus produce only 669 grams of CO2. we have to use new materials anyway.” The higher pressure is necessary to optimize efficiency. The need for action is urgent.200 grams of CO2 into the air. Siemens is building a comparable power plant for a consortium of 27 city utilities on a site at Lünen in northern Germany. One of the most efficient coal-fired power plants in the world. “We are confident that we can achieve this goal with 700 degrees. the steam temperature needs to be increased from the level currently found in the best power plants (around 600 degrees Celsius) to 700 degrees Celsius — the temperature to which the metals are being subjected in the Mülheim laboratory. we still have to prove it. which will have to withstand a temperature of 550 degrees. Such al- coal to produce a kilowatt-hour of electricity. so that normal steel will be adequate for the outside. the world’s coal-fired power plants consume 480 grams of I That’s equivalent to a service life of more than 25 years. is only too aware. Ernst-Wilhelm Pfitzinger. After all. while material fatigue and corrosion race at time-lapse speeds. In doing so. “Above 600 degrees. the inner and outer housings are to be thermally separated by a layer of cooler steam. Gigantic steam turbines will one day have to withstand over 700 degrees Celsius. he says. the project manager in charge of developing the 700-degree turbine in Mülheim. But even this concept creates new challenges.” There are good practical reasons why designers are determined to leap from 600 to 700 degrees and 285 to 350 bar pressure.000 hours.” he says. Such an efficient power plant would consume only 288 grams of coal per kilowatthour. it’s better if the metals fail in the lab than later. loys are expensive. On average. Only then will it become possible to achieve 50 percent efficiency. The blades then have the maximum available energy to convert into rotational energy. Germany.
no individual man- that could one day be used in a 700-degree power plant. Instead. efficiency. Today. even allowing for the 10 to 15 percent higher costs of a series-produced 700-degree power plant. the centrifugal force at the 340 kg blades reaches around 1. head of the Steam Power Plants and Emerging Plant Solutions unit at Siemens’ Fossil Power Generation Division in Erlangen. From 2005 until 2009. Gas turbines are delicate in comparison to coal turbines and can be built using completely different techniques. Covering 30 square meters. The production process used for gas turbines. for cooling — hence the location of the plant in a coastal city. designers characterized modern power plants as “over-critical” in line with this physical phenomenon. To jump from 600 to 700 degrees is no small achievement. Close by is a giant wheel that might look like the compressor blades of an airplane engine but is disproportionately larger. a power plant in the 600-degree Celsius/800-megawatt class costs over €1. however.500 rpm. including a nickel alloy turbine valve made by Siemens. the necessary casting. however. The 1. the focus is on technical design concepts for the boiler. That not only sounds unnecessarily threatening.000 880 g CO2/kWh 800 379 g coal/kWh 400 727 g CO2/kWh 313 g coal/kWh 669 g CO2/kWh 288 g coal/kWh 300 600 400 Global average EU-wide average Technology available today Steam power plant with 700 °C technology (2014) 200 200 100 0 Net efficiency: 30 % 38 % 46 %** 50 % 0 As efficiency increases. Housings belonging to steam turbines twice that size are awaiting assembly here. The “North Rhine-Westphalia 700°C Power Plant” is a pre-engineering study by ten European energy suppliers. The steam in the plant’s low-pressure turbine cools down to under 30 degrees Celsius and in doing so takes up such a large volume that the last two rows of blades. A “Component Test Facility for a 700°C Power Plant” is supported by the European Union. the turbine blade has a diameter of 6. in which the exhaust heat from a gas turbine generates steam for several other turbines. Siemens is The problem of naming such power plants will certainly be easier than developing their technologies.5 meters in length. we achieve efficiency levels of up to 46 percent. their pressures are comparatively low. With an efficiency of over 60 percent.“ he says.” For the 700-degree class. These include: COMTES700. The finished steam-turbine set is destined for power generation in a European pressurized water reactor (EPR) that is being built by Areva NP. which has a rotor diameter of almost three meters and is 4. What’s more. become really competitive if CO2 is made to play an economic role. Take its engine. which are made of titanium. in Olkiluoto. The project consortium also includes the Siemens Energy Fossil Division (for conventional plant components).91). 80 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 81 . Based on the results of preliminary projects. At temperatures from 600 to 620 degrees Celsius engineers refer to “ultra-supercritical. within which they are developing the 700-degree technology.400 degrees their temperatures are very high.115 g CO2/kWh 480 g coal/kWh 500 Mean data for coal-fired power plants (source: VGB) * related to a median calorific value of 25 MJ/kg ** Lünen coal-fired plant 1. there is no designation yet — let alone for anything beyond that. Says Siemens turbine expert Dr. However. 73). which produce hydrogen-rich syngas for chemical processes. the steam cooled to 520 degrees Celsius to avoid potential damage. E. But 700-degree power plants are not yet an economical proposition. but also on political decisions and legislation. Competing Concepts. where the use of nickel alloys has long been standard.7 meters. In addition. In any event.600 megawatts. doesn’t help here. which cools more effectively. Economically speaking. “We can’t simply copy the process. But at Siemens’ steam turbine and generator factory in Mülheim an der Ruhr. IGCC can. The development of more efficient coalfired power plants could thus become an exciting race between different concepts. And what does the future hold in store? “That depends not only on technological developments. savings will be possible due to the plant’s improved efficiency. This technology allows CO2 emissions to be reduced by over 85 percent to under 100 grams per kilowatt-hour. “The inspection of the valve was very positive.” complete steam-turbine set tips the scales at over 5. Finland. including coal gasification plants in refineries. the 30-year-old F Block at the E. such as oil and asphalt. To achieve at least 50 percent also developing a process for the separation of CO2 downstream from conventional power plants. but will cut CO2 emissions significantly. the IGCC power plants that Siemens is developing for power generation purposes are still at a disadvantage compared with conventional coal-fired power plants.500 tons at 1.” says Lothar Balling.ON coalfired Scholven power plant in Gelsenkirchen. But Heine isn’t interested in the next name combination of “hyper. The technology of CO2 separation from syngas downstream of a gasification unit already exists and is used in the petrochemicals industry. Bernd Müller CO2 Emissions in Coal-Fired Power Plants Specific CO2 emissions [g CO2/kWh]* Specific coal consumption [g coal/kWh]* Turbines that Dwarf other Engines You might think that the new Airbus A380 is relatively large. which will drive costs up to €2.700 per kilowatt. are not as high as in 600-degree or 700degree power plants. at around 20 bar. “That’s because the development and realization of innovative CO2 concepts need support. The first 700-degree power plant will cost around €1 billion.” “ultra” or “super. E. such as IGCC power plants. That too is a world record for so-called high-speed steam turbine sets. the pressure is much lower too. need to have a cross-sectional area of 16 square meters each (above). at 70 bar. customers are no longer interested. pipe work. Spring 2007. The feasibility of their transfer to commercial coal and lignite-fired plants of the 1. for example through the introduction of a CO2 tax or use of the gas in old oil fields to further improve their yield. Because water converts directly into steam at pressures of over 221 bar. are not far behind.ON.Energy Efficiency | Steam Turbine Materials Twice as big as an Airbus A380 turbine.” says Pfitzinger. “Today. and testing methods for manufacturing and processing the heat-resistant material have yet to be developed — at least for steam turbine components weighing several tons. main steam lines. with modern gas turbines. for example. But considering the increasing costs of raw materials and CO2 levies. Combined-cycle plants.” says Balling.” The results of the test will be analyzed by 2011.000 per installed kilowatt. 50plus will cost €1 billion. while. 50plus has therefore been essentially designed as a demonstration plant for future series-produced power stations. it will be possible to fit existing and new power plants with this technology.” Several IGCC plants are already in operation.” “At present. in which nothing is being built or tested. The old turbine was not affected by any of this. At 320 tons total weight. Siemens is currently building the largest combined-cycle power plant in the world in Irsching in Upper Bavaria. The European Association of Power and Heat Generators (VGB Power Tech) is coordinating a dozen international project partners. although at over 1. p.000-megawatt-class is also being evaluated. and energy suppliers have formed a number of consortia.000 rpm. are converted into syngas and fed into a gas and steam-turbine power plant (Pictures of the Future. "When things get uneconomical. 50plus. plant manufacturers. heat expansion coefficients. Demands on heat resistance. including Siemens. the steam-turbine rotor being manufactured in Siemens’ Mülheim an der Ruhr factory is the biggest and heaviest in the world. After passing through the test section. it also requires some mental acrobatics in terms of finding names. and other components of a 500-megawatt power plant. Together with E.200 1. milling.ON plans to preheat the combustion air and use seawater. coal consumption drops and carbon dioxide emissions decline. the complete rotor is the largest and heaviest in the world (picture above on this page). Construction of the 500-megawatt block is expected to start in 2010. plants with temperatures of 760 or even 800 degrees are in the realm of fantasy. In fact. in which coal and other fuels. ufacturer could handle this task alone — which is why producers. and other components operated at temperatures of 700 degrees Celsius. Siemens will be part of it. a company in which Siemens has a minority share of 34 percent. These included a test boiler.ON wants to put the first "real" 700degree power plant into operation in Wilhelmshaven in 2014." says Heine. forging. That’s because at temperatures of no more than 300 degrees Celsius the saturated steam from an EPR is much cooler than the steam in a coal-fired power plant. it is also the most efficient (p. you would scarcely notice the mighty A380 engines. Germany was in operation using components NRWPP700. which turn at the remarkable speed of 3. The new 700° technology will compete with other technologies. “By 2020 improvements will enable efficiencies of up to 51 percent without CO2 separation with our H-class gas turbines.000 tons and boasts a world-record output of 1. In the future. Holger Kirchner. making it the biggest in the world.
and there are already plenty of practical examples from the gas processing industry of CO2 separation from synthesis gas. Still. the absolute amount of electricity generated with coal during this period will actually increase from 8. Depending on the type of power plant.300 terawatt-hours (TWh) today to 10. That makes it even more essential for power plant construction companies and energy utilities to design and operate coal-fired power stations as cleanly as possible. when Siemens acquired what is today known as Siemens Fuel Gasification Technology GmbH in Freiberg near Dresden. for example. as is the case in conventional steam power plants. the third technical approach — post-combustion capture — can also be used in existing power stations. where the coal will later come from. However. The flue gas thus produced is composed mostly of carbon dioxide and water vapor.” explains Schmid. which means the crushed fuel first has to be mixed with water.” As early as the 1990s. coal can be injected into a gasifier in a watery emulsion. “This technology is suitable for expensive anthracite and hard coal. Both of these components are part of the Siemens portfolio. whereby gasifier technology was added in mid-2006.” On account of all these uncertainties. This makes them independent of other sources of energy. it means they’ve incorporated into their calculations the associated operating costs over a 20 to 25-year period. for which Siemens supplied the power plant components and managed the integration of the facilities. According to estimates by Siemens. “If a customer decides on a gasification plant. In this process. in China. there are three distinct methods for separating CO2 when burning coal to generate electricity: coal gasification in IGCC plants (IGCC stands for Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle) with separation before combustion (pre-combustion capture). the world economy cannot do without coal. Germany (below). The drawback to this development is evident. a process technology expert. separation of CO2 from flue gas downstream from a conventional steam power plant (postcombustion capture). managing director of Siemens Fuel Gasification Technology GmbH. the Netherlands. Rüdiger Schneider. New technologies are expected to free power station flue gases of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide — thus making a vital contribution to environmental protection. Alternatively. 84 for more information on IGCC). Proven IGCC technology. explains: “There are no firm legal or political structures in place. In 2006 alone. In this case. That’s because the Earth's population and its hunger for energy are growing fast. and Buggenum. in particular petroleum and natural gas. as well as in America and Australia.” says Dr. in those days CO2 separation wasn't even on the agenda. This prevents large amounts of nitrogen. Spain. it will probably be several years before the first IGCC power station with a CO2 separation unit is built. whereby the CO2 is separated through condensation. and the oxyfuel process for steam power plants. Neverthe- C With the oxyfuel concept. A tremendous effort has been undertaken worldwide for some years now to introduce carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology. Freiberg is located in what is therefore particularly high from customers in these countries." The reasons for the current lack of any large-scale low-CO2 power plants in operation are many and varied. that figure is over 80 percent. sion (see box on p. oal is currently experiencing a real boom.500 TWh. “There are big differences in the current stage of technological development of the three methods.e. In addition. “However. with our technology the customer remains on the safe side throughout the entire plant lifespan. according to Schuld. So. less. especially with regard to the storage of CO2. and is thus removed. however. IGCC power stations were built in Puertollano. “This CO2 scrubbing is the only retrofit option over the medium term for separating CO2 in existing power stations. from being needlessly added to the process and then forming nitrogen oxides during combustion. Up until 1990. which is part of Siemens’ Fossil Power Generation Divi- The first IGCC coal-fired power plants with integrated CO2 separation are due to enter service in 2012. the share of worldwide electricity generation accounted for by coal will decrease from 41 percent to 32 percent between now and 2030 as a result of the sharply expanding use of renewable energy sources.Energy Efficiency | CO2 Separation Siemens scientists at the company’s test plant in Freiberg. which makes up three quarters of the volume of atmospheric air. Christiane Schmid from the Business Development department at Siemens Fuel Gasification Technology GmbH in Freiberg. Whereas precombustion capture in IGCC plants is outstandingly suited to new facilities. and many countries have their own substantial reserves of coal. That’s because the process enables almost any type of coal to be used for gasification. but not at all for lignite or other types of coal with low calorific values. Although the authorities didn’t know this at the time. as CO2 emissions per kilowatt-hour of electricity generated at coal-fired power stations are almost twice as high as those from natural gas-fired combined cycle plants. 174 coal-fired power stations in the 500-megawatt class went on line in China. the cost used to be the German Democratic Republic. The key components of IGCC plants are the gasifier and the gas turbine. More than 41 percent of the world's electricity is generated today at coalfired power stations. are developing coal gasifiers (right) and investigating how different types of coal behave during the gasification process. Demand for Siemens gasifier technology use a wide range of the coal available in the world and purchase it as needed in accordance with prevailing prices.” Schuld explains.” says Dr. coal or natural gas is burned with pure oxygen rather than with air. whose government authorized the development of the so-called dry feeding system in the 1970s in order to be able to utilize lignite from the Lusatia region. situation remains unclear for our customers. what type it will be. “We then feed the CO2-laden detergent into a desorber and free it 82 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 83 . that organization was part of the Deutsches Brennstoffinstitut (German Fuel Institute). Siemens has been focusing on the first two methods — i. CO2 is removed from the flue gases after combustion. because he can Capturing Carbon Dioxide Coal will remain a cornerstone of the energy supply all over the world for a long time to come. since it’s difficult to project just how expensive IGCC with CO2 separation will actually be. “These plants all demonstrate the feasibility of the IGCC concept. “IGCC technology is the only method that’s been sufficiently tested. “But it’s precisely these low-grade types of coal that are available in large quantities in emerging markets such as China and India. and what it will cost are things no one can predict in advance. a fixed-price delivery contract for coal can only be secured nowadays for a limited number of years. approximately 90 percent of the CO2 in the flue gas binds at low temperatures to a special CO2 cleansing agent in an absorber.” Retrofitting for CO2 scrubbing.” The extent of this competitive edge becomes even clearer when we look at the service life of an IGCC power station. section manager for power plant chemical processes in the Fossil Power Generation Division. it turns out that the technique offers major competitive advantages. Guido Schuld. “However. pre and post-combustion capture.” says Schuld.
the project would send an important signal worldwide. cement factories. a half-hour west of Potsdam. energy supplier E. which predict that the gas can be securely confined underground in porous rock for thousands if not millions of years. pipes from a tank run into the damp soil. In order to make fossil fuel-fired power plants more climate-friendly as quickly as possible. this one also filled with a mass of cables. And if the gas isn’t emitted into the air. Germany. Pilot Plant Captures Carbon Dioxide In September 2009. Seven hundred meters under Schilling’s feet. CO+H2O CO2+H2 84 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 Electricity Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 85 . Here.ON joined forces with Siemens to put a pilot facility for CO2 separation into operation at the Staudinger coal-fired plant near Hanau in September 2009 (see box). is then coarsely cleaned. population 4. Germany. The best place to store this greenhouse gas permanently is deep underground. which means it consumes far less energy than previous procedures. it is almost fully retained in the cycle — that is. As a result. This is due to the fact that experts at Siemens Energy chose a detergent that lowers energy consumption. Considering its threeyear life span. 59). which corresponds to the commissioning of one plant every two days (see p. And the problem will grow more acute. a second hole plunges down.000 tons of CO2 into the earth. In view of these developments. Separation rates of up to 95 percent are projected for this technique. The pilot facility is testing the technology under real-life power plant conditions. which is attached to an electrical generator. It would prove that CO2 from coal-fired power plants. and 100 meters away there is a third hole. which indicate that fossil fuels will account for one third of the increase in power production over the next 20 years (see p. IGCC with CO2 Separation In the IGCC process. “Here’s where we measure the spread of carbon dioxide underground. technologies will be available within the next decade that will allow us to burn coal without having to have a guilty environmental conscience. The gas. whose primary constituents are carbon monoxide (CO) and hydrogen (H2). “The challenge is to maintain a high level of efficiency and avoid negative environmental influences. Siemens now has over 400.” says Schilling. Thanks to a special scrubbing process from Siemens. of the greenhouse gas by raising the temperature.” says Schneider. At the other end of the meadow. judging from the forecasts of the International Energy Agency (IEA) and Siemens.” For the past three years.800 degrees Celsius. the conversion of coal into power can be combined with upstream CO2 separation. the steam drives a steam turbine and a second electricity generator. the coal is converted into a combustible raw gas in a gasifier under pressure and at high temperatures of 1. Since June 2008. put 174 coal-fired power plants in the 500-megawatt class into operation in 2006 alone. and optimized many process parameters. The GFZ project near Ketzin. “We can conduct good analyses of all the individual aspects of CO2 scrubbing in our lab. refineries. etc. and steel mills can be pumped into the earth and stored there. A tangle of cables can be seen inside it.000 operating hours’ worth of experience in the combustion of hydrogen-rich fuel gases at various commercial power plants.2 percentage points in terms of efficiency. The hot flue gases. scientists plan to pump 90. is called CO2SINK. in spite of its modest scope. | CO2 Sequestration In Ketzin. Siemens experts investigate CO2 separation from flue gas. The result is a CO2 scrubbing process that costs only 9. these pipes will pump up to four tons of carbon dioxide per hour into the sandstone at high pressure. All the remaining hydrogen is burned in the gas turbine. H2. but to rise by 27 percent. t’s raining in Ketzin. Professor Frank Schilling from the research facility GeoForschungsZentrum Potsdam (GFZ) points down into a mud-filled hole from which a pipe as wide as a man protrudes. Moreover. the cycle begins anew. who is a mineralogist.000 tons of CO2 — roughly as much as the 150. Underground Disposal. “As a result. the researchers aim to further reduce energy consumption. whose efficiency costs total more than ten percentage points. up to 30. it can’t harm the climate. The CO2 is bound to an absorber (right) by a special scrubbing agent and thus removed. A drill tower rises up toward the dark clouds. That’s exactly what is happening at a test facility near Potsdam. In addition. are also used for steam generation. “Our objective is to develop the new CO2 separation process to the point where it’s ready for large-scale commercial applications by 2020. thus displacing salt water from pores in the rock. China.” Thanks to oxyfuel and pre and post-combustion capture. which might arise from traces of harmful detergent emissions in the scrubbed flue gases. 28). In fact. a few gas tanks and a plain shack stand in a green meadow in the middle of the Havelland district. it does not escape with the residual gas. there is an abundance of room under- I Air Air separation O2 N2 Coal Gasification CO Shift Cleaning Sulfur CO2 separation CO2 compression CO2 to store Combined cycle power plant Raw gas: CO. provide important answers to basic unresolved questions regarding CO2 sequestration and therefore contribute significantly to environmental protection. the facility removes around 90 percent of the CO2 from a part of the flue gases emitted by the plant. Among the factors being examined are the detergent’s long-term chemical stability and the effectiveness of the process. Next. “After that. Germany.000. If the measurements in Ketzin confirm the models. as is the case with many other detergent substances. Located at the Staudinger coal-fired power plant near Hanau. Geologists have drilled holes 700 meters into the rock and installed numerous measuring probes. our new chemical CO2 scrubbing technique loses less detergent into the flue gas and also requires less energy than previous methods.000 residents of Potsdam will exhale during the same period. after which the regenerated detergent is fed back into the absorber. But that’s nothing compared to the more than 10 billion tons of this greenhouse gas that are expelled into the atmosphere each year through power plant smokestacks. The detergent used is also very stable. after which the carbon monoxide is converted into CO2 and H2 in a shift reactor with the help of water vapor. especially atmospheric nitrogen and water vapor. Ulrike Zechbauer Testing Eternal Incarceration Emissions from coal-fired power plants must become cleaner — which means removing their carbon dioxide content. CO2SINK could. At the latter. the project is expected to sequester about 90.ON launched a pilot carbon dioxide (CO2) capture facility. which means that it hardly reacts with trace substances in the flue gas.” Schneider explains.” Heading for Large-Scale Applications.” Schneider explains.000 tons of CO2 per year have been pumped into the earth. for example. In a manner similar to what occurs in a conventional combined cycle power station. coal demand is expected not to decrease. Schneider and his team have been working extensively in a laboratory at Frankfurt Höchst Industrial Park on CO2 detergents that bind CO2 particularly well and release it again when temperatures are raised. First. Siemens and E. sulfur compounds and CO2 are separated out with the help of a chemical or physical scrubbing process. The CO2 is then compressed and transported to a storage site. the separation process consumes relatively little energy and does not negatively impact the environment.400 to 1.Energy Efficiency | CO2 Separation A CO2 testing laboratory in Frankfurt.
Even if it were to escape. cents per kilowatt-hour. One essential task of CO2SINK is therefore to monitor the three-dimensional propagation of CO2 in rock and draw conclusions applicable to commercial CO2 sequestration at other locations. more and more of it will precipitate as a mineral compound and thus be kept out of the atmosphere forever. And of course CO2 isn’t poisonous or radioactive. possibly even 10. state of Illinois. coal-fired power plants with CO2 removal lose a considerable amount of efficiency. but in countries without a CO2 tax other market mechanisms must come into play. Siemens will also play an active role in cases where hardware does not yet exist. we’ll see that with our monitoring system and. 50 % Increasingly effective sequestration Sequestration in water-bearing strata Sequestration in mineral aggregates 1 10 100 1000 10. Siemens is helping to fund the CO2SINK project and participating as an observer. one thing is certain. because most of our power will continue to come from Sequestration: A Key Transitional Technology Prof. fossil fuels in the foreseeable future. Ideal CO2 reservoirs exist wherever gases or liquids have long accumulated underground.S.000 tons of CO2 have been stored? Hüttl: I don’t think so. The process is already of interest for increasing yields during petroleum and natural gas extraction.” says Günther Haupt of Siemens’ Fossil Power Generation division. the quantity of CO2 stored in two years will merely be equal to the amount naturally generated in the same period by bacteria through degradation processes in the soil in the area above the CO2 reservoir in Ketzin. High-purity argon forces the CO2 upward through capillary tubes to the surface.000. so we haven’t had a problem with acceptance of this project. StatoilHydro of Norway. Also. the company will be involved. A second pipe is used for the transmission of shock waves. Here. 52. That’s worth the price in Norway. That’s enough for about a hundred years at the current rate of CO2 emissions from German coal-fired power plants — about 350 million tons. Optical sensors measure temperature changes underground through the scattering of photons and thereby show the flow of CO2 below the surface. has the most experience here. are skeptical of new industrial-scale technologies. “CO2 sequestration won’t be one of our core areas of expertise. says Frank Schilling: “Prac- tically nothing travels upward through the rock. “So far.” The reason for this is the cap layer of gypsum and clay that lies like a bowl over the approximately nine-square-kilometer dome of sandstone and completely seals it. which must be compensated for with more fuel or new technologies to increase efficiency. we’ll be able to just blow it away in the air. But in the event of a state subsidy or a CO2 tax of two to three U. Will the Ketzin project come to an end after 60. We also have plans for other projects in Germany and abroad. the CO2 would be literally gone with the wind. In addition. chains of electrodes measure electrical resistance in the rock. but also in the U. But we can’t do without it if we want to act responsibly. CO2 is pumped through a pipe into a saline sandstone aquifer that functions Sequestration in porous strata as a reservoir. the spread of the gas can be monitored this way as well. What would happen if the CO2 managed to escape to the surface? Since the gas is heavier than air. since they also compress CO2 from pre. The project team is also carrying out experiments modeled on medical ultrasound. as in the Adecos project.000 Period of time following CO2 sequestration (years) 0 Interview conducted in Spring. 86 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2007 87 . medium. critics fear that it could collect in pools where it would suffocate all life. transport. which have manifestly been sealed for millions of years. That basically means all petroleum and natural gas deposits. This is the case not only in Brandenburg. which won the Nobel Prize in 2007. We breathe it in small quantities all the time. the process chain of removal. But it would cost StatoilHydro dearly to vent it.and post-combustion processes. Our project is therefore an important building block for a more environmentally compatible method of energy production for the coming decades. where liquefied CO2 can be easily transported in pipes to storage depots. The IPCC report calculates the cost of CO2 capture by low-CO2 power plants and its transportation and sequestration to be 20 to 70 dollars per ton. This array of electrodes is supplemented by electrodes at the surface.S. the certificates in the emissions trading system provided for by the Kyoto Protocol currently cost less than 15 dollars — not enough to create an incentive. Thanks to this geoelectric tomogra- phy. as Norway levies a tax of $50 on each ton of CO2. 2007. which is developing an oxyfuel power plant with CO2 removal with support from the German government. Here. and monitoring involves a great deal of effort and is still very expensive. Hüttl formerly worked as an environmental expert in the Council of Advisers of the German Federal Government. Even if CO2SINK works as planned.N. There are three industrialscale showpiece projects in Canada. The dream of a coal-fired power plant with a direct exhaust line into the subterranean rock could become a reality in many places around the world if policymakers quickly lay the groundwork and research efforts are intensified. the German Research Center for Geosciences. In the area of the reservoir around the bores there are narrow tubes with a semi-permeable membrane through which CO2 can pass. Since 1996 it has pumped ten million tons of CO2 down to a depth of 1. is the scientific director of the GeoForschungs-Zentrum in Potsdam. It will dissolve there in saline aquifers. It served the same purpose over the past forty years. conductivity decreases and resistance increases. In Europe. So CO2 sequestration is a transitional technology. injection. although the cost of electricity would increase by 20 percent. intense sound waves are transmitted into the ground from the surface between the boreholes and reflected back. When the water is displaced by CO2 . estimates global sequestration capacity to be up to 900 billion tons in oil and gas deposits and at least 1. much as it dissolves in mineral water when pumped by a CO2 carbonator. But there’s no risk of this in Ketzin. the technology would pay for itself. Toward Affordable Sequestration. Reinhard Hüttl. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) of the U. which are detected by geophones. This repository was significantly larger than the planned CO2 reservoir. Bernd Müller Is underground sequestration of carbon dioxide the solution to the climatechange problem? Hüttl: We have to look at things realistically. which are 50 and 100 meters away from the pipe carrying the gas. How Carbon Dioxide Sequestration Works Seismic source Power plant CO2 Shock waves Geophones and other sensors CO2 Vibration measurement devices (geophones) Impermeable cap layer 700 m Seismic source CO2 monitoring 800 m Reservoir Percentage of stored CO2 100 % Sequestration under a cap layer In Ketzin. The capacity for CO2 sequestration in Germany alone is estimated at 30 billion tons. If it does escape at some point. the pipes are outfitted with other sensors that are designed to detect the electrical conductivity and temperature in the aquifer. especially in Germany. Over time. for instance. But since the construction of coal-fired power plants is an important part of Siemens’ business and depends on a solution to the CO2 problem. No other project anywhere is going to such great lengths to gather measurements in this respect: In the project’s two measuring pipes. as well as other carbonates such as magnesite and siderite. and Norway.” says Haupt. How has the public responded to the project? Hüttl: Many people. when power companies used a sandstone layer here at a depth of between 250 and 400 meters to store natural gas. Verifying the underlying models and furnishing proof of whether and how CO2 can be reliably sequestrated over the long term are among the central aims of the CO2SINK project. says Schilling. Studies show that CO2 remains underground for an extremely long time. which are sandstone deposits saturated with salt water. and long-term behavior of CO2 underground. It is known that after thousands of years calcium carbonate is produced. where its concentration is measured. The Ketzin test site is ideal for more experiments. Some oil and gas producers already pump CO2 back into such deposits in order to raise the yield through increased pressure. A geoscientist. Siemens is designing compressors for the CO2 that will force it underground as a gas — but with the density of a liquid. In Ketzin we can still learn a lot about CO2 sequestration and the short. for instance for storing the world’s first CO2 from a coal-fired power plant and for the underground sequestration of CO2 separated from biomass during gas production. This enables detailed monitoring of the spread of carbon dioxide far below the surface. the gas can be monitored in great detail in three dimensions as it spreads. where a prototype CO2-free power plant is being tested in the Future-Gen project. Besides. Underground Laboratory. and will then be retained in the pores of the sandstone. Concentrated salt water in the pores of the sandstone conducts the electrical current very well. But in Ketzin there used to be an underground natural gas storage reservoir at the same spot and people are used to that idea. The CO2 is an impurity that is extracted with the natural gas. a scientific intergovernmental body. Interview conducted by Bernd Müller. These potential sequestration sites around the world are also often found near large CO2 producers. which we don’t expect. Whatever the results of the measurements. and drink it in sparkling mineral water and soft drinks.000 billion tons in saline aquifers.000 meters beneath the North Sea. Algeria. CO2 compressors of this kind haven’t been customized for large power plants.Energy Efficiency | CO2 Sequestration | Interview Hüttl Source: GeoForschungsZentrum Potsdam ground for carbon dioxide. These compressors have applications in multiple fields. like those found in Ketzin.. if necessary. Since sound has a lower velocity in pores filled with CO2 than in those filled with salt water.
which meets over 90 percent of its power needs from coal. Siemens is involved in a number of major upgrades in this area. who is responsible for so-called lifetime management and thus for power plant upgrades. easy-to-use platform. When it comes to upgrading existing power plants. near Stuttgart. where. for example. Siemens is installing new high-pressure turbines and modernizing the generator at FPL’s Turkey Point nuclear plant.. power companies have to convert a lot of older combined-cycle power plants from base. it will take huge structural changes in how we generate and consume electricity. the use of new seals in high. rather than regulation. each electricity consumer will have become a little bit easier on the environment — without even thinking about it. The biggest potential lies in North America as well as parts of Europe and Asia. Back in Europe. As a result.S. According to the IEA. When winds are strong. and 17 years for gas turbines. the plant is now classified as one of EnBW’s “green” facilities and may. almost 29 years old. and Japan are still in need of modernization. has invested around €30 million on upgrading its cogeneration plant in Altbach. these farms generate lots of electricity. however. Power plants meeting this standard will receive emission permits free of charge. For instance. Power generator Energie Baden-Württemberg (EnBW). That said. along with greater reliability and reduced maintenance costs. in a contract awarded In Europe. This amounts to a huge advance in climate protection. This figure includes all the aging plants in Central Europe and is unrivaled anywhere else in the world. In this sector. Only about one in 10 plants tops the 40 percent mark. Siemens also renews the control system for the turbine set or the power plant as a whole (Pictures of the Future. 27). which generates the lion’s share of its power using nuclear plants. Following modernization of the control systems and the three turbines. For the operators of Carneys Point. the U. That’s hardly surprising. are usually of a more recent vintage. “By modern- it more efficient and boosted its output by 11 MW.and intermediate-pressure turbines reduces clearance losses. if required. responsible at Siemens for the modernization of fossil-fuel and nuclear power plants. including Poland. by building a large number of them at the same time and thus exploiting the effects of standardization. all of which are being fitted with the SPPA-T3000 web-based instrumentation and control system. on the other hand. In er than 25 years and in urgent need of modernization. North America’s power plants are even older than Europe’s. has been decommissioning around 50 GW of older fossil generating capacity since 1997 — a process that is due to be completed by 2010. many of the plants in France. which likewise increases efficiency. Lucie nuclear plant in Florida. it costs between €20 million and €60 million to comprehensively upgrade a steam turbine system for a medium-sized power plant. for a 700-megawatt (MW) generating unit. New York. there is still massive untapped potential. This is particularly important for China.000 metric tons. on the other hand. many of which were commissioned over the last few decades. In India. And once the last inefficient plant has been decommissioned. with the company currently contracted to renew the complete control system for a number of plants. These measures lengthen the service life of the turbine. Gas turbines. and combinedcycle installations in Syracuse and Beaver-Falls. there are hundreds of fossil fuel-fired power plants that could. ccording to Dr. with an average age of just under 12 years. An exception. an expert for EU climate policy at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs in Berlin. an upgraded power plant also reaches its operating point more quickly. bring about power plant modernization. the European Union is prepared to let market forces. According to Dr. has been made for many Central and Eastern European countries. the initial capital expenditure is amortized within just a few years. we can tease an extra 30 to 40 megawatts out of the plant. climate protection is still largely a corporate affair.Energy Efficiency | Power Plant Upgrades Upgrading and new control systems (bottom right) can boost a steam turbine’s efficiency substantially. p. At the same time. which will boost its output by around 100 MW. Power companies will therefore have to pay for a percentage of their CO2 emissions through the purchase of emission certificates. Rewarding Efficiency. climate expert Geden foresees a major upheaval in the power plant market from 2013 New Life for Old Plants Worldwide. an increase in efficiency of five percentage points translates into a reduction in annual CO2 emissions of around 500. most of the world’s nuclear plants date from the 1970s and 1980s. the latter have to be able to reach peak load rapidly to compensate for load fluctuations. and more efficient conventional power plants. including expanded use of renewable energy. giving them until 2020 to catch up. “In Europe. Siemens renewed the plant’s control systems and upgraded its steam turbine. Norbert Henkel. China. which feature extremely heat-resistant steam turbines. improve their efficiency by 10 or even 15 percent. the most efficient power plants will set the benchmark there too. “The conventional components of these plants. replacing the blades and seals. New Jersey. one new coal-fired power plant with an efficiency of over 44 percent enters commercial service every month. says Geden. In addition. But when winds die down. This applies particularly to Central European countries. Over the period from 1992 to the present. all need upgrading at around the same time. The entire outer casing could be retained. allowing it to remain in operation for an additional 15 to 20 years. Emissions trading will thus ensure that old power plants become increasingly unprofitable. In addition. there are over 500 steam turbine plants that now require modernization — in India. Some of these cover more than just the turbines. Germany. Oliver Geden. the efficiency of the latest coal-fired power plants in the industrialized West has risen from 42 to 47 percent. Whereas most of the nuclear facilities in Germany have been almost completely updated over the past 10 to 15 years.” Henkel explains. With the exception of France. which has made Boosting Output by 100 MW.” he explains. To cover the rapidly-growing demand for electricity from industry and households. which means conventional plants can scale back output. During this time. Siemens improved output by 11 MW. on average. with an average of 34 years for steam turbines in the U.” says Hendricks. there are over 500 steam turbine plants that are oldonward. by Florida Power and Light (FPL). At EnBW’s cogeneration plant in Altbach. where industrialization came much later. for example. including the turbines. given that steam turbines in Europe are.000 metric tons. 60 percent of which are ultramodern facilities. and Canada. The average efficiency of Europe’s coal-fired power plants is a mere 37 to 38 percent. the increasing exploitation of alternative energy sources is also accelerating the pace of modernization. As Ralf Hendricks from Siemens Energy explains. Significant progress has already been made in the construction of new power plants. when CO2 emission certificates in this sector will all be auctioned. This will increase the output of each of the two reactors by 100 MW. the output of the plant rose by 40. these countries have the least-efficient power plants. China. still has a lot of coalfired power plants rated at efficiency levels of between 26 and 30 percent.5 MW to 942 MW. both in economic and environmental terms. As a result.” For this to happen. In contrast to fossil-fired power plants. according to the International Energy Agency. Unlike its stance on the automobile industry. China has been able to radically reduce construction costs for such plants. California. effective climate protection begins when “many people consume in an environmentally sustainable way. which cuts CO2 emissions. At present. Such upgrades would reduce CO2 emissions accordingly.to peak-load operation. this will provide greater flexibility to tailor operation of the individual generating units to actual demand. the German Association of Energy and Water Industries (BDEW) estimates that around one-quarter of Germany’s power plants will need to be modernized in the immediate future. Siemens is overhauling the generator and renewing a high-pressure turbine and two low-pressure turbines at the St. Siemens is a specialist in upgrading steam turbines. The ability to react rapidly not only secures a power company high prices on the power market. Nevertheless. A izing the turbine. the plant has benefitted from the upgrade with a reduction in its annual CO2 emissions of 50. With around 4. In Europe. which tends to close unprofitable power plants rather than upgrade them. a measure that will keep it in action for the next 30 years. the energy mix in Europe still includes a major share of coal. This system integrates the power plant and turbine control functions in a common. As a rule. a job that primarily involves replacing the rotor and the inner casing. if modernized. Katrin Nikolaus 88 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 89 . including a coal-fired facility in Carneys Point. The reason for the conversions is that Europe is ramping up use of land-based and offshore wind farms. rack up additional operating hours. for example. Siemens was awarded the Asian Power Award for its upgrading of the Sendai nuclear power plant in Japan. Spring 2009. power companies in the western member states are rapidly upgrading their facilities.S. there are fewer than 50 plants of a similar vintage. The latest in turbine blade technology and enlarged flow areas boost the efficiency and performance of the turbine. 2008. a combined-cycle plant in Redding. less than 50. which would be a major contribution to climate protection. however.000 operating hours at full load per year. without having to think twice about what they’re doing. China is currently building a raft of new power plants.
during the same period. since 2000. Enormous white clouds of steam are released. he economic crisis has hit the steel market especially hard.000 four-person households. it is often also necessary to install additional measurement systems. the ore is ignited on the sinter strand. According to the German Federal Statistical Office. they still have to make their production processes more efficient in order to reduce costs and emissions. After that. In a sintering plant the ore is baked on a sinter strand.” The latter is only charged with about ten percent of its actual quenching capacity and is ready in case a problem occurs. Given energy savings of only one percent at an annual production volume of five million tons of steel.” says Olaus Ritamaki.000 households. This can be prevented with the help of the coke dry-quenching process (CDQ) offered by Siemens VAI. Thanks to Siemens’ energy prediction and optimization module. Taken together. “Flaring” losses — the burning off of surplus gas. Each ton of sinter requires up to ten percent less coke and about 20 percent less ignition gas. the hot coke must be quenched. In fact. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA). The heat from a coking plant can power a steam turbine that generates enough electricity for 30. costs. “Steel producers who use the prediction function are superbly equipped for negotiating prices with their energy suppliers. by reducing energy consumption. the waste gas mixture flows into a recirculation hood installed above the system can be tailored to the customer’s specific needs. As steel mills use a very large number of processes. production fell by more than 51 percent. Key values in terms of energy consumption and distribution can then be recorded every few seconds. and can even be integrated into existing automation technology at very old facilities. With CDQ. The high degree of transparency of Siemens’ mill overview processes enables operators to predict and prevent costly load peaks by initiating load shedding — in other words. energy-efficient technologies reduce operating costs and ease the strain on the environment. Product Manager for sintering plants at Siemens VAI in Linz. the entire volume of waste gas — which includes sulphur dioxide. Siemens is currently taking part in a project run by SAIL. An investment in CDQ is thus usually amortized in under two years. A typical CDQ facility from Siemens with a capacity of one million tons of coke per year consists of three cooling chambers — two in full operation and one on “hot stand-by. That’s equivalent to the power produced by five large wind turbines and adequate for the requirements of about 30. Among the biggest sources of flue gas emissions in integrated steel mills are coking and sintering plants.” says Andre Fulgencio. which later must be replaced by energy purchased at a high price — are minimized. which in turn is available for further processes. A circulating gas flows in at the bottom of the cooling chamber and absorbs the heat. who is responsible for technical marketing of automation solutions at Siemens VAI in Linz. which is a lot of money and emissions. it is first fed into a chamber. This can be achieved by shutting off energy-consuming equipment like furnaces when they are not needed. This makes it possible to use energy-efficient technologies to fight both the economic and the climate crisis. Here. energy-intensive industries in particular are facing increasingly strict environmental regulations. “The ore burns from the top down. Connecting a steam turbine yields 15 to 17 megawatts of generating capacity. for example to determine levels in tanks. heating. Modernization not only saves millions in operating costs — leading to rapid amortization — but environmentally-friendly CDQ also reduces dust and gas emissions to almost zero.000 tons per year. “In the ideal scenario all you need to do is transfer and configure the software. which is similar to a furnace grate.000 degrees Celsius in the absence of air. about 500 grams of dust are emitted into the atmosphere per ton of coke — frequently much more. To allow some of the gas to be recirculated into the process. In most cases the savings amount to about three percent of total energy. coal is heated in a coke oven to 1. India’s biggest steel producer. dust emissions and wastewater harm the environment. CO2 emissions can be reduced by around 100. Stephanie Lackerschmid Efficiency Catches Fire The economic crisis is presenting steelmakers with a major challenge. as the coke in the CDQ process is drier than wet- reduce costs and improve environmental protection. water is used. “In contrast. Organized to be modular. the energy needed for an order can even be predicted on the basis of production planning.5 percent from the level posted in the first half of 2008. In addition. For the conventional wet quenching process. can radically reduce operating costs and emissions. While some newer facilities use the Corex or Finex process- es developed by Siemens and can thus dispense with coking and sintering. even as 1. to ensure the oxygen content is at least 16 percent and thus high enough for combustion. its degree of automation and annual tonnage. for example. at an ArcelorMittal plant in Kraków. Siemens VAI has also developed an energy management system that focuses on a steel plant’s total energy use with a view to cutting its energy consumption. raw steel production in Germany in the first half of 2009 alone was down 43. and the energy employed dissipates into the atmosphere. hot coke is cooled to 180 degrees Celsius. is channeled with air back into the waste heat water boiler. and emissions. in which pig iron is produced from iron ore using coke and sinter. the fine ore is prepared for the blast furnace. and wind boxes suction off the waste operated by the world’s fourth biggest steel producer. an investment in Siemens’ energy-saving solutions can pay for itself very quickly. This involves taking into account the complete production process — from raw materials to final steel products. a sinter plant operated by Dragon Steel in Taiwan. depending on the plant. With CDQ. recorded the sharpest decline in orders since the end of World War II. “Environmental protection and cost savings are not mutually exclusive. various nitrogen oxides and dust — is reduced by 40 percent. In the U. like in a tobacco pipe.Energy Efficiency | Steel Plants Efficient Siemens solutions. Poland. from where it is blown back onto the sinter strand — at the most homogeneous possible temperature and pressure. Siemens VAI offers innovative modernization solutions that cut costs and protect the environment. for example. now at about 800 degrees Celsius. less reducing agent is consumed later in the blast furnace. Posco of South Korea. Quenching is thus possible at all times. including possible maintenance periods. To date. Here it is mixed with waste gases from the sinter cooler. Red Hot Results. such as those for blast furnaces (large image) and electric arc furnaces for melting scrap (right). such as quenched coke. System-wide Savings. This measure lowers a sintering plant’s CO2 emissions by up to ten percent. What’s more. many steelworks still use the traditional blast furnace method. Although most producers can’t afford costly new plants. Afterwards. the World Steel Association reports.000 degree coke is fed into the cooling chambers from above. Finland. To make coke. Many CDQ systems from Siemens VAI have been operating reliably for years — for example. After several very successful years — driven by the boom in emerging markets — demand collapsed dramatically. In the Fall of 2008 the German steel industry. waste gas produced during sintering can be recirculated. General Manager at Siemens VAI in Oulu. iron and steel T mills consume 20 percent of the energy required by industry and are responsible for 30 percent of industrial CO2 emissions. for example. Energy consumption alone accounts for about one third of a steel mill’s operating costs. In this way.” says Hartl. the heat from the redhot coke is used to produce steam.” says Franz Hartl. the investment can pay off after just a few months. and two sinter plants 90 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 91 . The gas. these steps reduce fuel requirements and thus costs. Here.S. which is building a facility that is scheduled to open in 2011. Here. more than 500 kilograms of high pressure and high temperature steam can be produced per ton of coke. or for generating electricity. Austria. With conventional wet quenching. enabling operators to purchase fuels at attractive prices. With Selective Waste Gas Recirculation technologies. this technology has been used at three locations worldwide: a plant operated by Austrian steel producer Voestalpine (in operation since 2005). Sintering plants are another area in which Siemens VAI offers innovative solutions that the sinter strand. gases from below.
sorting plants. explaining the drawbacks of purely mechanical propulsion. Digital assistants. Electricity.000 hp. it’s as tall as a three-story building and as wide as a two-lane highway. which Köllner also that can significantly speed up the transport of mining products: trolley trucks. still prefer DC drive systems. who is an engineer and has actually driven one of the behemoths.000 plus hp. And it requires more parts that need to be maintained regularly. ere’s a dump truck that puts others to shame. can accelerate the dump trucks to 60 kilometers per hour as well as brake them.” says Köllner. they can move around 120 tons. since the diesel engine switches itself off automatically when contact is made with the overhead line. “The rotating electric field can be transformed directly into mechanical rotation. just one technology check a year is all that’s needed. the converters’ air coolers must be extraordinarily dependable. Once the trucks are fully loaded.” says Köllner. It’s just not worth putting the engine and gears of a car onto the slopes of a mine. and downtimes for maintenance and repair work are rare. time. Its tires measure four meters in diameter.” says Köllner. giant trucks can achieve outputs of up to 6. “In the fu- Thanks to catenaries and three-phase current drives. even in very dusty conditions. which are located in outsized steel cabinets. trains experience extreme conditions. A gearbox powerful enough to handle the workload required of these trucks would be enormous. and the mine operators can reduce the number of expensive mechanical giants they need to have on site. lifts and lowers the excavator arm. For over 30 years now. “But that really is still a pipe dream. Spring 2005.” Giant Trucks. After all. which are generally installed on steep slopes.Energy Efficiency | Mining Electrification Excavators can lift up to 120 tons per scoop. Not only do the trucks dispense with gearboxes.” says Köllner. In addition. despite their 3. As is the case with road traffic. In fact. as well as over steep hills. Next to it. They have to be able to run at minus 40 degrees Celsius and in blistering heat. the braking energy that is released when a truck rolls downhill is fed back into the network via a second pair of conductors. They dig for bituminous sand. convert current from the diesel generator or cable into three-phase current ture. a man looks like a mouse. or transport tons of copper ore. Andrea Hoferichter 92 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 93 . converters are at the heart of all three-phase current drives. “The process barely takes two minutes. the drives need to move up to 600 tons through sand. One day. Catenaries (right) make transport quicker and more economical. on the other hand. ensures that the excavator can turn and a fourth drives the caterpillar tracks. each the size of a swimming pool. not Diesel. The catenaries can provide the drive systems with almost 6. Thanks to their electric drive systems. For exam- shares responsibility for marketing. while another moves the shovel.” says Christian Dirscherl. So why doesn’t it just propel the truck too? “The reason is simple. At present. “This is where conventional trucks. “It is crucial that these machines be used as efficiently as possible and experience an absolute minimum of down time. Electrical resistors are used to brake the vehicles. 51). There are no local emissions. Their grab arms look like electricity pylons and their shovels are as big as mobile homes. Zero Emissions. the machines’ functionality can be monitored from a control center (see Pictures of the Future. What’s more. A third ple. Thanks to all these benefits. “Such trucks are essentially driven like a car with an automatic gearbox. In such motors. This is no mean feat. AC drives also form the basis for a development from Siemens cover the costs of buying the trolley trucks and the costs associated with the installation of the overhead lines. mud. Such vehicles function like streetcars — sporting antler-like pantographs that can be raised and lowered at the press of a button. This means that the truck’s speed can almost double.000 hp. mechanical monsters are hard at work.” says Köllner.” says Dirscherl. Some manufacturers. and speed can be steplessly adjusted via three-phase current frequency. Siemens has been using three-phase current drives for mining vehicles. H they haul raw materials to collecting points. Such excavators are also powered by Siemens three-phase drives. and money. This limits the revolutions per minute that a motor of this type can attain. This means that the driver can link the truck to overhead conductors (catenaries). are helping to ensure that this is the case. “The most powerful. With just one scoop.” says Köllner. but they’re not mass-produced. and deep holes. interrupted and re-engaged to generate a rotational movement. there are more than 150 such excavators in operation worldwide. the technology quickly pays for itself.” says Walter Köllner from Siemens Energy & Automation in Atlanta. and would also need a lot of maintenance. In their load compartments. and in the bituminous sand pits of Canada. The motors. “Our regional set-up and local partners can also offer rapid assistance if need be.” says Köllner. they also do without clutches and brake disks in normal operation. Such supersized trucks are hard at work around the world in the copper mines of the Andes. the giant trucks may even be able to set off on their hunt for raw materials without drivers.600 hp. Trucks move up to 400 tons per trip. we want to equip excavators and trucks with sensors that will enable obstacles to be detected reliably.” Speed is king not just in terms of transportation but also loading performance. A 3. can only advance at a snail’s pace. however. p. in the diamond mines of Zambia. and washing plants. for example. All in all. These trucks may be massive. “After no more than three years. who develops full-service solutions for mine operators at Siemens’ Industry Sector in Erlangen. since the trucks weigh around 200 tons each — about the same as 130 mid-range cars. These converters. the excavators remain in the same place for long periods and don’t require a diesel generator. at 2.” says Dirscherl. “Like mining vehicles. That’s why monster excavators are also used in mines. The environment benefits from trolley technology too.000 hp diesel engine generates the current. “We use four motors with different outputs. Germany. The trucks’ threephase current drive systems. the current has to be constantly Monster Drives At open pit mines all over the world. even where air pressure is low.” says Köllner. The converters feature particularly long-lasting circuit components that have proven their capability in rail technology. new assistance systems will increase safety and make the driver’s job easier. service is due to be expanded even further. Siemens helps its customers to save energy. which are positioned on the rear wheels. Be it trucks or excavators. ultra-efficient electrical drive systems. It takes just four shovelfuls to fill the load that can be modulated. “Generally. Sophisticated control systems are also vital when it comes to keeping maintenance and repair times short. “Our alternating current motors can deliver up to seven percent more performance from the same amount of energy. By equipping the giant excavators and trucks with state-of-the-art. thanks to these systems. while reducing emissions. says Köllner. alongside the giant trucks. These excavators are massive steel systems that resemble the bow of a ship and sit atop caterpillar tracks. a mine operator can re- compartment of a giant truck.” Unlike the trucks. they cost up to €2 million each. Georgia.
Gitta Rohling Flight from Carbon Dioxide Rising energy prices.Energy Efficiency | Airports Siemens is developing measures to save energy for Denver Airport (below). hourly values also play a key role in assessing the efficiency of the systems. and cogeneration are used. With energy performance contracting. alternative energy. the Airport Seattle has lowed its energy-consumption about four percent and its natural gas load about eight percent. The goal here is to manage the many energy-hungry systems in use with the help of intelligent IT solutions aligned with airport processes. Solutions from Siemens demonstrate the kinds of energy savings that are possible if complex airport infrastructures are looked at holistically. IT Solution for Energy-Hungry Systems. geothermal sources. “But if you optimize lighting systems to function in line with ambient light conditions and the utilization of specific areas.” says Karl. The study produced a total of 26 proposals. While the Airport Detroit has been reduced its total energy-costs about 23 percent per year. In order that the Airport Denver is able to finance these energy-saving solutions. solar. and building technologies. in terms of area.5 million. energy mix. Energy savings of up to 40 percent can thus be achieved. To help the airport operator with its decisions.000 — but would lead to annual energy-cost savings of $425. corresponds to around 10. the airport is one of the world’s busiest. you can cut costs substantially. those in the parking garages and on the runways and apron burn even longer.S.S. CO2-neutral airports could already be in operation today. enver International Airport is a majestic facility.” says Karl. head of Airport Solutions at BT. This brings the green. but benefits from the savings once the investment has been paid off. the customer doesn’t have to spend any of its own money.000 tons p. Even the CO2-free airport does not have to remain a vision if we take advantage of all the opportunities available to us. are already using the advantages of this contracting. and increasingly stringent legal requirements are forcing airports to sustainably reduce their energy consumption.” says Karl.” says Karl. After conducting a detailed analysis of the proposals. baggage and freight logistics.000 tons of CO2. In addition. and the Interna- Energy-saving lamps alone would save Denver International more than 11 million kWh per year. Another relatively simple way to save energy is to install energy-saving lamps and LED lighting systems. Installation costs for such a system would total approximately $3.S. for example. which together account for more than 80 percent of total energy consumption. making it by far the largest in the U. Another measure involves the provision of heat and hot water using biomass. Siemens Building Technologies is also active as an energy manager in Germany. airports are looking to achieve extensive savings in terms of not only costs but also energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions — and to do so as simply as possible and at a low level of investment. In return. thousands of airports around the world are used by billions of passengers and airport employees every year. the saved energy costs are paid to the vendor until its expenses for financing. Here in the Southern German Airport. Such an investment would thus pays for itself after only six months. which. Lights in the passenger terminal at Denver International are left on 18 hours per day.a. and to regularly monitor and compare energy consumption over How to Exploit Savings Potential. “Naturally. The fact is that airports need to take steps to increase their energy efficiency. With this form of financing.8 percent per year. the study lists the cost of each individual measure. an international association of airport operators with 567 members operating in more than 1. and hydroelectric are used to generate the required energy.” says Uwe Karl. tional Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) show that passenger volumes are rising at a consistent average rate of between 3. Siemens can serve as a single source for all the required services and solutions needed by airport authorities from its various Groups.” The Siemens study thus proposes such measures as well. with an associated CO2 reduction of around 7. The third area focuses on solutions in the fields of power generation. bio- time. since their complex infrastructures make them major energy consumers. given the U. “A lot can be achieved if you look at an airport and its complex infrastructure from a holistic perspective. and if this equipment is operated only on an as needed basis. The program for analyzing the energy data compares current values with the building’s numerical model. such as wind. The set-points as well as the controller settings from the automation and field level are also documented and processed by the airport’s energy management system. Along with energy-saving considerations. IT services.000 per year. decides which measures will be implemented. Denver’s airport covers almost 140 square kilometers. and office and equipment buildings. Use of energy-efficient lighting systems could reduce electricity consumption by more than 11 million kWh per year. These examples illustrate how major energy savings can be achieved through smart modernization and optimization. After all. as well as the associated energy reduction and its amortization period. The first area involves finding out which devices can be turned off or modernized. In mid-2009 BT released a study offering optimization proposals aimed at reducing the airport’s overall natural gas demand by ten percent and kWh consumption by 12 percent.5 and 5. growing environmental awareness. With 51 million passengers in 2008. or more than four kWh per passenger. the energy required for heating and air conditioning can be reduced by up to 40 percent just through architectural measures and new insulation and ventilation concepts. airport almost within reach. The installation of these systems. if geothermal energy. The roof of its passenger terminal is adorned with 34 pinnacles made of translucent Teflon as a tribute to the nearby Rocky Mountains. waiting halls. and finances them. and yearly reports. at Münster/Osnabrück Airport and also at Stuttgart Airport. so it makes sense to consider the use of biomass/biogas and wind energy. BT is responsible for efficient energy management on the basis of values calculated from the counting pulses of roughly 500 water meters and 400 heat and cooling meters. CO2 emissions can be reduced by 70 percent or even more if alternative energy sources. and at which times. decisions have to be made based on individual circumstances. if equipment is replaced with devices that use little energy. “If the political and public environment demanded it.000. would cost $215. Its complex infrastructure also makes it a huge consumer of energy. as old machines are often the biggest energy wasters. i. studies conducted by the Airports Council International (ACI). the study also took D into account the impact the proposed measures would have on the environment. There are also more expensive measures. Thanks to Siemens technologies. the International Air Transport Association (IATA).e.650 airports in 176 countries. At the same time. Siemens already serves as an energy manager at many airports in the U. Stuttgart Airport (right) has already cut its energy bill by around 40 percent. and Germany. more pleasant temperatures and lighting plus better air quality make the time spent at airports more comfortable. quarterly. planning. “Our energy-saving measures are implemented in three areas. Two other Airports in the U. mass/biogas. and baggage transport systems. operating capacity.S.” The second area addresses the use of renewable energy sources such as wind. For its study. which is the stated goal of Airports Council International (ACI). and monitoring are paid in full. 94 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 95 . Siemens offers beside its comprehensive expertise also an energy performance contracting. and passenger comfort. cooling. In new buildings. the vendor contractually guarantees the savings. the most effective of which involve measures that would address heating. BT examined the terminal. while energy savings would add up to almost $500. ventilation. which employ CO2 sensors and intelligent ventilation control units.” says Karl. which can cover all requirements in the summer and serve as a supplementary energy source in the winter. “In many cases you’re dealing with just one main switch for all the lights. In addition to monthly. It therefore makes sense at any airport to use energy-saving lamps that operate in accordance with ambient light conditions and utilization requirements. lighting. the airport’s operating company therefore asked Siemens’ Building Technologies (BT) division to draw up concepts designed to cut airport energy use. “Here. In early 2008. CO2-free. as it required 216 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity in 2007. and fuel cells. biomass and biogas. the Denver International Airport operating company will decide which measures it will implement. A good example of how to achieve a major effect at relatively low cost is offered by systems that control terminal ventilation in line with utilization. such as the use of alternative energy generation systems that would immediately result in a high CO2 reduction but would pay for themselves only after a long period.
nature. The Times Company is also able to use freeair cooling. and the electrical and heat output of the in-house gas-fired combined-heat-and power generation systems are just a small sample of the many variables that have to be monitored to ensure efficient use of energy in such a skyscraper. Sylvia Trage (DENA). schools or industrial premises. since China’s expenditures for new construction are expected to increase by 9. one that symbolizes a key principle behind the building — to conserve energy with the help of. who is also known as “Spiderman. greenhouse gas emissions are to be reduced by 20 percent compared to 1990. Energy Consumption in NonLighting Residential Buildings 6% Other 60% Residential buildings 65% Ventilation. and in harmony with. Source: Study: “Worldwide Trends in Energy Use and Efficiency”.2 percent a year until 2010 according to the latest forecast by Freedonia.764 kWh/year Buildings 40% Non-residential buildings 35% Without insulation Hot water 10% Space heat 46% With insulation 96 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 Source: Germany Energy Agency Other process heat 15% Walls 10. such as new types of coolants. but also all the way through to the other side. The directive is set to become mandatory for residential buildings in 2010. even though a study by McGraw Hill Construction in 2007 revealed that the proportion of “green buildings” in the U. In the context of energy-saving contracting. France. In the U.Energy Efficiency | Facts and Forecasts | Efficient Buildings Free-climber Alain Robert scaled the NY Times Building as a protest against climate change — yet the building uses 30 percent less energy than its neighbors. energy efficiency is growing in importance.700 kWh/year Windows 2. IEA (2008) Household Energy Consumption in 19 Industrialized Nations 16 14 12 Exajoules Space heating Domestic appliances cant. by helping property owners modernize their buildings. meaning that on a cool morning.” offers an impressive example of how modern technology can be employed to conserve energy and cut CO2 emissions without sacrificing comfort. By 2010. No building superintendent could ever make decisions on the basis of so much information. signifiPercent 100 90 80 Hot water 58 10 8 6 16 4 2 0 1990 1995 2000 2005 17 4 5 1990 16 5 5 2005 Lighting Cooking 21 53 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 the “California Green Building Standards Code” at the end of July 2008.400 of them in 2007 alone. It’s like an oasis in the middle of Manhattan. using sensors and other technologies. and installing double glazed windows. Germany. 2008 Alain Robert climbed the facade of the new headquarters of the New York Times Company to call attention to the problem of global warming. The building management system seamlessly integrates equipment from other manufacturers. which has been in place since 2005. which can then be operated by means of a centralized control interface. The New York Times Building (NYTB). Future improvements here will come from optimizing existing technologies. heating. uses up to 30 percent less energy than conventional office high-rises. Executive Manager of the Berlin Energy Agency. The shading system works in tandem with a first-of-its-kind lighting system that maximizes use of natural light so that electric lighting is used only as a supplement. “Across Germany.100 buildings and factories had acquired the “Energy Star” label for energy efficiency. potential savings of 30 percent are possible for heat and 15 percent for electric power. outside temperature. Four buildings — in New York. By the end of 2007. Building technicians are provided with real time information via an extensive network of hun- Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 97 . and air conditioning products is estimated at around €80 billion. The global market for heating. Groundswell of Support for More Efficient Buildings A lmost 40 percent of the world’s energy is used by buildings. the building has an unusual ultra-clear glass facade that allows neighbors to not only look into the interior. the agency anticipates the market volume for contracting to reach €4 billion a year. By 2010.000 electrical ballasts in the lighting system contains a computer chip that allows it to be controlled individually. ventilation.5 million tons each year. Deputy Director of the National Development and Reform Commission. savings of 56 percent could be made in terms of heating energy (see Pictures of the Future. 4. the building’s configuration. Malmö. Demand for efficient building systems is growing. the 52-story building in Manhattan scaled by Robert. UK. such investments can pay for themselves out of contractuallyagreed savings within a defined period. and information technology interact in an optimal manner. Glass skyscrapers normally waste a lot of energy because they collect heat like a greenhouse and then use air conditioning to keep themselves cool. special materials. A study by the German Federal Environment Agency has even calculated that by thoroughly renovating and insulating walls and cellar ceilings in old buildings.3 percent of residential real estate. “Thanks to the introduction of energy use standards for new buildings..” says Xie-Zhen Hua. Designed by star architect Renzo Piano.520 kWh/year ack in June. This means that by 2020. But in The New York Times Building these decisions are made by a building management system from Siemens that automatically monitors and controls the air conditioning. The annual increases of 20 to 30 percent are. and better control and process technology. we have already saved five million tons of coal between January and October 2007 alone. and generation systems. p.120 kWh/year Roof 3. such as the “20-20-20 by 2020” motto. the Building Regulations Committee passed Nature is their Model State-of-the-art technology is making it possible to reduce energy consumption in buildings by up to 30 percent. the building on which he chose to unfurl a banner with a message about climate protection was designed precisely to address that issue. such as offices. either blocking extreme light to reduce glare or allowing light to enter B at times of less direct sunlight.900 kWh/year Ground/cellar 714 kWh/year Source: Siemens AG Ground/cellar 1. efficiency contracting will cut energy costs by some €800 million and carbon dioxide emissions by 4. Spring 2007. In California. air conditioning 23% Walls 2. Everyone knows it makes sense to air out your home in the morning on hot summer days — but it takes high-tech systems to achieve the same practical results in a building as big as the NYTB. Ironically. and Japan. some 16 billion is accounted for by residential buildings within cities. which opened in November 2007. Madrid. But the NYTB is different. the angle of the sun. It has a second facade made of ceramic rods that extends from the ground floor to the roof and keeps out direct light. since only around ten percent of the market is being tapped. it is also growing at five percent per year. Another European initiative is the voluntary GreenBuilding program.000 kWh/year IEA 19: Association of 19 industrialized nations incl. and Sydney — demonstrate what can be achieved for people and the environment when sensors. the government plans to invest around $400 billion in energy efficiency improvements for buildings. Interior temperature. water cooling. Nature Conservation and Reactor Safety and the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW).S.” says Michael Geißler. 86). This is an important step. In fact. Of China’s 40 billion square meters of residential and usable floor space. is still only 0. Improvements will be documented in an effort to ensure that only energy-efficient construction plans are approved.S. however. energy supply systems. air from the outside can be brought into the building.S. Each of the more than 18. U. particularly in public buildings. A shading system is programmed to use the position of the sun and inputs from an extensive sensor network to raise and lower shades. according to the German Federal Ministry for the Environment. Its aim is to improve the energy efficiency of non-residential buildings. the proportion of renewable energies increased to 20 percent and energy efficiency increased by 20 percent. The design allows passersby to look right through the lobby and into a garden featuring birch trees and moss. Contracting providers such as Siemens can exploit significant growth potential here. It contains guidelines aimed at pushing building energy consumption 15 percent below the values that are being achieved by current binding energy efficiency standards. fire alarm. The task is enormously complex.100 kWh/year Windows 4. Heating Losses for a Typical Home with and without Insulation Roof 12. Europe has various initiatives. 1. energy costs and carbon dioxide emissions can be cut by an average of up to 30 percent in this way. According to the German Energy Agency primarily as a result of stricter legal requirements and energy efficiency campaigns. According to the Berlin Energy Agency.
for example — will be available on control panels located throughout the building. while at other times the greatest efficiency is achieved by letting them both run. and the roof features a small garden right in the middle of the Australian metropolis. are around 30 percent lower than in similar buildings.000 LEDs for Siemens’ Osram subsidiary in what was the first mass architectural application of such technology. the building automatically regulates itself to ensure energy efficiency. Warmer water from the top floors can trans- port heat down to the lower floors. the owners of the Turning Torso may not have realized they would become pioneers in lighting systems for buildings. Minimizing Resource Consumption. The fact that impressive aesthetics and energy efficiency needn’t be mutually exclusive is also demonstrated by the 30 The Bond office complex in Sydney — the first building in Australia to receive five stars from the Australian Building Greenhouse Rating Scheme (ABGR). energy and water supply. dreds of sensors. “The Torre de Cristal is truly avant-garde for Spain. Greenhouse gas emissions at 30 The Bond. which is why I’m convinced this project will serve as a model in many ways. humid work day. which was completed in 2004. its light and ventilation systems will be shut down. Sydney’s 30 The Bond is divided into 80 zones that can be controlled individually. and lighting. Once cooled. Completely new for Australia at the time the 30 The Bond building opened was the method used for cooling it. the air drops back to the floor where the cycle begins again. sometimes it’s more efficient to have one of two water pumps operating at full capacity. with LEDs used to flood the corridors in symmetrical white light. the garden is watered by a timed. Light is one of its design key elements. Several of the energy conservation strategies are also similar. cooled. As with similar buildings in New York and Madrid. which calls for more extensively exploiting the surroundings of the buildings.” LED Lighthouse. with only those parts of the building that are actually in use being illuminated. the system finds that the upper floors are warmer than the lower ones. one of Spain’s prime locations. which are distributed throughout the building.” It’s no coincidence that in many cases the solutions are based on the same principle as that applied in New York. for example. When the Turning Torso was built. air conditioning. the building management system will shut down its light and ventilation. whereby we decide on a case-by-case basis which technologies are most suitable for a given situation. Whether it’s a hot. nature opens up all kinds of opportunities for living and working in harmony with it in modern high-tech buildings — and intelligent building technology makes it possible to seize these opportunities. making the building a part of its natural surroundings. who was responsible for engineering the Siemens solution at 30 The Bond: “When it comes to such ambitious projects Siemens is an enabler helping customers to achieve their individual goals. There are also CO2 sensors for measuring air quality in the conference rooms. without diminishing comfort in any way. and the light of the sun.” says Gary Marciniak. Individual control units will be networked and will constantly exchange information on conditions in their sectors. For example.” says Izquierdo. After all. Malmö`s Turning Torso (below) and Sydney’s 30 The Bond (right) also save lots of energy.” he adds. as there is a café located in an eight-story atrium whose huge size helps to cool the structure. LEDs consumed about as much energy as fluorescent tubes — but today they use around a third less energy for the same output. Similar technologies are being used in the Torre de Cristal skyscraper in Madrid’s Fuencarral-El Pardo district. All relevant information — from lighting and air conditioning to heating systems. If a fire breaks out. But it was their long service life that made them appealing in 2005. thus providing a real time overview of all building conditions and processes. The building’s ambitious architectural style led the New York Museum of Modern Art to induct it into its Hall of Fame of the world’s 25 most fascinating skyscrapers. it will cool things off by automatically sending cold water to the upper floors through high-pressure pipes. While all functions can be regulated from a central control room. Says Lynden Clark. The control panels will also use information from sensors to regulate air flows and thus the temperature of individual sectors of the building. thus helping to ensure smooth operations. Sweden. In addition. “Other solutions like fluorescent lights would have created unattractive shadows. Andreas Kleinschmidt 98 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 99 . fire protection. Crystal Tower. If part of the building is not in use. for example.” The system itself recognizes and automatically exploits such situations in order to maximize resource conservation. intelligent building management technologies from Siemens integrate various systems at 30 The Bond. Madrid. Instead of passing cold air directly into the office space.Energy Efficiency | Efficient Buildings A garden in the NY Times Building (left) boosts motivation while networked sensors cut power consumption. and ventilated.” says Jørn Brinkmann. Depending on the weather. Stability will also be maintained in the event of a failure of individual systems or in case the central control room itself is damaged. Back then. the natural heat or cold. “Solutions for energy efficiency in buildings are in many respects still in their infancy here. including those for heating. Izquierdo helped her Siemens colleagues on the Torre de Cristal project to optimize energy efficiency in all areas. Instead of heating the ground floor at the same time that the air conditioning is running in the top floor. Account Executive at Siemens Building Technologies. or a cold and dry holiday when only a few offices are being used — the goal is always to save energy by ensuring that as few systems as possible are in operation. and Sydney. The system channels fresh air into a room only if people are present. the Torre de Cristal has benefited from a Siemens fire protection system. says Margarita Izquierdo of Siemens Building Technologies. consuming around 15 percent less energy than conventional units. so the upper floors take longer to heat up in the morning. If. The intelligent control panels are also very efficient. including those for monitoring temperature. The highest rating is issued to buildings that operate with a carbon footprint that falls below a set benchmark. This stringent certification system was introduced by the government of New South Wales to encourage building owners to use state-of-the-art technology to minimize resource consumption. Another energy-saving building is the 190-meter Turning Torso in Malmö. Sixty percent of all workstations have a clear view outside. The back wall is made entirely of sandstone. drip irrigation system at night. “That’s obvious. who coordinated the installation of some 16. building management system from Siemens — will in the future help ensure that the most demanding tenant requirements are met while using as little energy as possible. ventilation dampers would still automati- If part of the building is not in use. The second tallest building in the country. who is responsible for Energy & Environmental Solutions. “Desigo” — an integrated cally close throughout the building to prevent smoke from spreading. “Nobody benefits from cooling an empty office in the evening. this usually isn’t necessary because all it takes is a few commands to get the systems to automatically adjust themselves to conditions on any day. Those who visit it generally don’t realize at first that they’re in an office building. Automated control procedures can then be used to make continual adjustments to enable optimal energy utilization. which was completed in 2005. Chilled beams cool the space below by acting as a heat sink for naturally-rising warm air. “But other factors are less apparent. the system pumps chilled water through passive chilled beams (or radiators) mounted in ceilings.
” As the day progresses. When Buildings Come Sensors are set to give buildings a spectrum of information — and scientists at Siemens are working on combining many of their functions on a single chip. Building users will be able to inform such systems about when they will be arriving. Combined with user information. cheaper. building management systems will be able to perform many new services. the gallium oxide sensor — Fleischer’s career breakthrough invention — has been measuring the CO content of exhaust gas in thousands of small firing systems for years. Sensors for measuring light and temperature are widely used today. Fleischer and his team are already developing sensors that can monitor air quality in buildings. But recent advances in developing silicon-based sensor chips equipped with their own power source and radio module have caught the attention of building operaAs soon as wireless-capable sensor chips can be produced cheaply. it will become feasible to link thousands of them in a finely woven infrastructure in buildings. and in connection with potentially dangerous machinery. they will be intelligent systems that communicate with their occupants. who heads Strzoda’s research group. he and his coworkers are studying detector materials to determine which reacts best with the gases to be detected. can also be used in Office buildings will become intelligent systems that communicate with their users. a new sensor from Siemens’ research labs that measures alcohol content in a person’s breath may soon go into production. Fleischer is one of Siemens’ most productive inventors (see Pictures of the Future. Maximilian Fleischer. sensors. humidity. The air in most of the world’s offices and conference rooms has a CO2 content in excess of 1. “Houses will no longer be empty shells. tors. Illinois. Strzoda and his colleagues actually have it good. t Siemens Corporate Technology in Munich. all he needs to do is take a look at a small device on the wall. Until now. Fall 2004. is making them smaller. and then issue appropriate commands to a variety of subsystems. or where people have gathered. thereby making it possible to optimize their energy output and emissions. according to Dr.” says Strzoda. we need a chip that can measure at least four parameters: temperature.” says Fleischer. In a cathode sputtering facility characterized by a mysterious blue- A sulted in new products from Siemens. however. Research. Bottom: Tempering metal films. the prototype laseroptic sensor developed by Siemens scientists reads 400 ppm CO2.000 ppm. Kerstin Wiesner (left) tests the sensitivity of gas sensors. In their labs. Sensors play a key role in all scenarios involving the future of building system technologies. Most buildings still don’t have CO2 sensors — but this will soon change. where a corrosive substance has been released. “We will eventually be able to use sensors to imitate nature. In a completely different area of development. sensors were rarely used in buildings because they were too expensive and too difficult to install and maintain. gases like CO2. This technology. “To accomplish this. These laser-optic sensors are still in the early stages of their development. 81. and Fall 2006. In contrast.9 billion in 2010. Germany.” predicts Ahmed. That’s because such sensors can yield big savings.” says Dr. and more flexible — such as Siemens’ CO2 measurement sensor (bottom left). “That’s a good value when you consider that our atmosphere currently contains 380 ppm CO2. His team has produced many sensor-related inventions that have re- to Life trains. p. With around 160 patents to his name. which has been licensed from Siemens. Today. the level at which people begin to feel uncomfortable and become tired and unfocused. and odors. however. when physicist Rainer Strzoda enters his work area and wants to find out if the climate control system is working properly.Energy Efficiency | Intelligent Sensors Sensors were long considered too expensive for building systems. which security mechanisms have to be used. the CO2 reading slowly climbs to around 600–700 ppm — solely because the scientists are breathing. and it will be some time before they hit the market. Gas sensors — micro electrical-mechanical systems (MEMS) made of silicon chips and an oxidizing layer — are a relatively new development. Intechno Consulting estimates that the global annual market for gas sensor systems will be roughly € 2. Osman Ahmed. and which rooms to ventilate. Just as our senses and nerves constantly supply our brains with information that allows us to make decisions. and Strzoda and his colleagues work on their inventions and discuss their results. 100 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 101 . Big Savings from Tiny Sensors. one of many sensor types being studied by Maximilian Fleischer (right). streetcars. A variety of sensors will ensure that management systems always know when a toilet is in need of repair. To this end. and Sweden has announced that it plans to become the first country to combine it with a vehicle immobilizer to prevent intoxicated people from driving. p. “This means the room contains only a little more carbon dioxide than the outside environment. who heads an innovation team at Siemens Building Technology in Buffalo Grove. 58). processors in building management systems will be used to receive and process data from thousands of Gas Detectives.
With this in mind. “But that might be too late for people near the source of a fire who have already inhaled a toxic gas. He and his team use colorant grain size to control the dispersion properties of the particles. impedance. it literally relegates incandescent bulbs (15 lm/W) to the shadows. At present she’s examining how the skeletal muscle cells of rats react to various waste water samples. dopant atoms have been introduced to the crystal lattices. Ahmed adds. LED firmament is undoubtedly “Ostar Lighting. The lamp contains six high-efficiency LED chips.” says Fleischer. Zachau’s team has come up with a new system that will transform parts of the blue LED light not only into yellow.” says Andreas Haas of Siemens Building Technologies in Switzerland.” With its efficiency of about 70 lumens per watt. white LEDs with a service life of 90. The scientists are also working on developing long-lasting odor sensors. Spring 2007. cell culture sensors react to a spectrum of toxins. doctoral student Rebekka Kubisch is working with petri dishes full of a red fluid. The advantage of this method is that several hundred samples can be produced in a single day. each measuring one square millimeter. sensor in order to prevent negative side effects. Germany. This needn’t be the case. After all. Just down the hall from the laser-optic sensor lab. Bottom: The Ostar Lighting white LED shines brighter than a 50-watt halogen lamp. LEDs still do not accurately reproduce natural colors. a Siemens company. The substances being investigated in Fleischer’s lab don’t dock directly on a chip’s surface. The subsequent concentration of ozone can in turn be monitored by another type of where most of a gas in a room is concentrated. Light-Emitting Developments Cutting energy consumption. causing a change in electrical resistance that the chip can read and convert into signals. 34). A computer-controlled manipulator is then used to weigh out the starting materials and position the pans on a sample carrier. The stability of the phosphor is increased by means of a protective coating. air conditioning. Efficiency is optimized via chemical composition. can produce even greater savings. Such living sensors offer tremendous advantages over chemical-based sensors because. for which sophisticated climate control systems are now standard. ventilation.” says Fleischer. Nevertheless. This is why building operators are interested in acquiring devices that detect the specific gases typically associated with flames. the star in the Another important factor when it comes to producing efficient LEDs involves the yellow and orange-red colorants that are applied to the original light source in layers in order to transform the LED chips’ blue light into white. the white LED success story has been in the making for years (Pictures of the Future. LEDs for general lighting should be as big as possible. More importantly.000 hours. Spring 2003. p. The larger the crystals are. and air quality and presence sensors can reduce the energy used for heating. sensor cost a lot less than renovating a building and. the latter will issue a command to release ozone. and acetone to produce model odors. but also into green and red light. the higher is the probability that impurities and irregularities will occur. Haas estimates that precise room climate sensors. which create new phosphors when heated in an oven. To that end. and lighting by 30 percent compared to a building with conventional automation technology. Not only do white LEDs require only one-fifth the power used by traditional light bulbs. Which procedure is more suitable for gas detection depends on the materials in question. “As a result. Osram researcher Dr.000 hours. The objective of the screenings is to test as many compositions as possible in the shortest period of time. Hexanal. measure water quality.” says Liepold. the researchers are producing sensor surfaces only a few millionths of a meter thick. Steffen Köhler from Osram Opto Semiconductors in Regensburg. while living cells react to all ight emitting diodes (LEDs) are as small as motes of dust — but they’re giants when it comes to environmental friendliness. Liepold uses a perforated metal sheet about the size of a postcard. such as respiratory tract irritation. The dishes are being used to grow cell cultures for “living” sensors that can do things such as L Indoor climate sensors and optimized automation can significantly lower a building’s energy consumption.” she explains.000 lumens. the detecting material on a chip must respond only to the substance being searched for. Ute Liepold of Siemens Corporate Technology in Munich relies on combinatorial chemistry (Pictures of the Future. the LED spectrum will be complete — like sunlight — and colors will be superbly reproduced. If such a sensor reports a bad odor in the air to the control system. and respiration rate of cell sensors (left) at Siemens Corporate Technology in Munich. if false alarms are to be avoided. however. And the greater the number of impurities. 102 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2007 103 . The researchers place the desired combinations of the tiny oxidation surfaces they produce side-by-side on field effect transistors (FETs) in a chip. initial steps in that direction have already been taken. building operators are most interested in the savings potential that sensor systems offer. If the chip is equipped with a radio module. of course. Below: Materials for LEDs being tested in a fluorescent light library. banishing pollutants. It’s important to bear in mind that LEDs are a combination of differently doped semiconductor crystals. “This kind of sensor needs to function for at least ten years if it’s going to attract interest on the market. This is why Siemens researchers are developing gas sensors that can recognize typical room odors. which allows them to vary emitted light. it can wirelessly send the data to a building management system’s control units. and a gallium oxide with finely distributed platinum for detecting odors. when combined with state-of-the-art optimized building automation. they produce only blue and yellow wavelengths. What’s more. To accelerate phosphor development. Just around the corner: Bright. so that they can supply large amounts of light. Doctoral student Rebekka Kubisch measures the acidification. 26). they are mercury-free.Energy Efficiency | Intelligent Sensors | Lighting glowing plasma. is used for tests of sensors designed to detect odors in carpets. which bonds to odor-producing molecules and neutralizes them by splitting them. the less efficient the conversion of electrical energy into light. “We mount these cells on chips. Dr.“ he says. “But organizing and evaluating all the data is quite a challenge. for example. The researchers have used 18 different gases. a subsidiary of Osram. unlike conventional energy-saving lamps. Offering 1. And next door. Examples include a barium titanate-copper oxide-mixed oxide combination for detecting CO2. “With Ostar.” says project leader Dr. a small device that uses a type of screen printing technique to detect gases is being studied. However. but flow as if through a tunnel between a molecular capturing layer and the actual FET structure. and then observe the types of reactions that result. such as ethane. Unlike chemical sensors. A new universal detector (right). Nevertheless. “Rooms are often aired out only because they smell unpleasant. Long-lasting luminosity. living sensors could be used in green buildings that save energy by setting up as many closed cycles as possible. Siemens scientists have already done a lot to take us a step closer to this Katrin Nikolaus vision. unlike sunlight or light from incandescent bulbs. That’s because. Such devices would be activated long before enough smoke could be produced to set off a conventional alarm. for water and air. for example. In fact. and multifunctional sensors are an important piece of this puzzle. Achieving this goal is anything but an easy matter.” says Fleischer.” Whatever the future has in store. with chemical sensors you have to know in advance which harmful substance you want to test for.” says Fleischer. propene. expose them to toxins. which is brighter than a 50-watt halogen lamp. but they last about 50 times longer. This requirement also applies to fire alarms. Universal Experts. “Highly sensitive early warning systems are critical here. In contrast to the trend toward miniaturization in the electronics industry. we have created a very large illuminated area. Although Ahmed’s vision of tomorrow’s buildings may still seem like a stretch. He believes trends in building technologies will parallel those in cars. The sheet holds as many as 96 crucibles containing mixtures of powders. “We know that 2. That’s because. which have to be pure and regularly structured at the atomic level. since ambient air can be cleaned using ozone. One of the main challenges in the development of gas sensors is the question of crosssensitivities.” Zachau explains. and boosting lamp service life — that’s the mission of Osram’s lamp developers. Köhler is confident that even more efficient and bigger chips can be produced.000 lumens is a feasible goal. p. in a related experiment. Siemens engineers are also working on non-chip sensors such as laseroptic devices that can remotely determine toxins. “One day we’re going to have buildings that don’t require any energy from outside. most of which still react optically to the presence of smoke. In other words. Comfort is also affected by odors. Looking further ahead. “Comfort demands are increasing. Such detectors — especially if combined with sensors for automated climate control — are at the top of building operators’ wish lists. Martin Zachau is an expert in this field. The Dulux EL LongLife (above) is a compact fluorescent lamp with a rated life of 15. We’re going to need a lot of intelligent products to get there. though.
around 900 billion kilowatt-hours would be saved. It was thus at once a premiere and a complex detective assignment. Three years ago. and how are they extracted. Osram compact fluorescent lamps still use mercury. but it’s a step forward for the environment. while production (small images) requires a relatively small proportion of energy. head of Marketing for Xenarc Systems. that would be equivalent to a 450million-ton reduction in carbon dioxide emissions each year. Osram and the Energy Research Center in Munich began assembling data on the energy consumption of lamps 20 years ago.” says Christian Wittig. and processed? What exactly occurs during the manufacturing process.Energy Efficiency | Lighting | Lamps Fluorescent lamp manufacturing. Her objective — which was also the M topic of her doctoral dissertation at the Brandenburg University of Technology in Cottbus. “So the mercury is fixed with iron powder. Thanks to their larger size.” says Criens. and sifted through numerous databases.” says Merz. “It’s nearly impossible to dispense such a small amount of this material in drop form. and which machines and tools are needed? How much material and energy is used. Since then. as is the need to think in terms of systems. researchers. the loss occurring during conversion into white light is very low. When Less is More. “Service life is a key factor when working on concepts for new lamps. Osram has continually updated its fig- An energy-saving lamp lasts 15 times longer than a light bulb — and saves one megawatt-hour of electricity. For instance. which is why researchers are looking for alternatives. filled with gases. energy consumption can be reduced by using less material. The “leaner” model actually consumes around 40 percent less energy while delivering the same level of brightness.000 square kilometers of forest — an area about the size of Sweden — to achieve the same effect. Andrea Hoferichter Let there be Savings! Researchers who have studied the life cycles of various lamps from Osram. He foresees perennial favorites like white LEDs. how long do they last? And finally. a sustainability expert at Osram.” says Merz. a harmless gas. Kroban’s studies show that in some cases. table lamps. According to this data. 104 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 105 . Ultimately. Implementation of many such measures can raise monly used T8 tube. and developers. “The product’s development was difficult. and Toyota use the new lamps. which lets us put the right amount into each lamp. preventing unwanted oxidation processes and helping to dissipate heat.” which replaces mercury with zinc iodide. As Kroban discovered. a Siemens subsidiary. which can burn for 15. performed much better in terms of energy efficiency than the comures. have found that their environmental balance sheet from production to disposal is almost exclusively determined by their efficiency and life span. but less than three milligrams per lamp. As a result. Automakers including Audi. Most of the energy consumed during a lamp’s life cycle results from operation. The Osram T5 fluorescent tube. we’ll achieve more than if we covered up all our smokestacks and no longer released production-related carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. prepared.” says Wittig. for example. “This dissertation marked the first time that the entire lamp life cycle had been closely examined — everything from quarry operations and extraction of the materials for the glass to recycling and disposal facilities. “Production is a bit more complicated. Osram launched the “Xenarc Hg-free lamp. it should be possible to fill lamps with precisely the amount of gas needed to make them light up most efficiently. is usually added in xenon automobile headlights.” says Christian Merz. which is about as thin as a finger.” Long service life is particularly critical for environmental reasons. Glowing Prospects. an Osram environmental expert. Every detail had to be identi- fied and recorded. which is as thick as a broomstick. “That’s why efficiency during operation is the most effective lever for making lamps more environmentally friendly. That’s why Osram researchers developed the very longlasting compact fluorescent Dulux EL LongLife lamp. Germany — was to put together a comprehensive environmental balance sheet for fluorescent lamps and various other Osram lighting systems. environmentally-friendly and long-lasting lamps. for example.” she says. and future waste thus prevented. and other applications using LEDs as fixed components at competitive prices. The young engineer visited Osram glass manufacturing centers. mercury atoms are more easily hit by electrons in the plasma of these gas-discharge lamps. But mercury is also poisonous and can accumulate in the environment. A small amount of mercury. which turns into a gas at a lamp’s operating temperature. if we can raise lamp luminous efficiency even just one or two percent. “So. “We had to adapt the entire electronic and optical environment to the new technology. such as limiting tolerances during production in order to minimize a lamp’s environmental impact. transported.000 hours. Because they emit light that is close to the visible spectrum. who adds that it therefore makes sense to ban incandescent light bulbs. algorzata Kroban spent months traveling to manufacturing workshops and production halls every day. She spoke with factory managers. Ford. and can therefore be reused when the lamp reaches the end of its service life? The results of Kroban’s extensive investigation made one thing very clear: “The environmental balance sheet for lamps is largely determined by their energy consumption during operation. Where do raw materials come from. An EU regulation therefore specifies that it should be avoided whenever possible in the automotive sector. longer service life means fewer replaced lamps — and less mercury. the luminous efficiency of today’s common lighting systems by around 20 percent. where glass cylinders and tubes are made from a large number of materials melted together in giant hot furnaces.” For example.000 hours of light. Kroban witnessed lamp bodies being coated with phosphor. which substances are recyclable. only one to two percent of total lamp energy consumption is attributable to lamp production. or onethird of the electricity currently being used for lighting. Given today’s energy mix for electricity production. and which energy sources are involved? How much electricity do the lamps consume when operating. “You’d have to plant 450.” The desired efficiency increases can be attained through extensive refinements. fitted with electronic circuits and stuck to plastic parts. the higher currents in this xenon lamp subject the components and electronics to greater stress. Soon. dispensing with the need for a base — a development that is expected to soon usher in new kinds of floor lamps. which provide up to 90. so Osram had to use thicker electrodes and thicker fused quartz glass. many customers could soon be glowing with pleasure at the sight of their bright. Ralf Criens. Mercury also serves as a chemical and thermal buffer. by simply switching to modern lighting solutions.” says Dr. Mercury-Free Lamps. Osram’s developers can also use such life cycle analyses to identify those parts of the production process where resources can be conserved.
Among the light sources compared were a 75-watt incandescent bulb and a 15-watt Osram Dulux EL Longlife energy-saving lamp. “Residents are happy that they are not only saving power and money with the new technology but also help- T The DULUX EL’s Energy Consumption and CO2 Emissions are more than 80% Lower than those of Light Bulbs over a 15. On the one hand. To calculate the amount of CO2 saved.87 kg CO2/lamp x 1= 0. “That’s less mercury than a coal-fired power plant releases when it produces the electricity used by a conventional light bulb during its lifetime. which he also marks with a cross to indicate which lamp was replaced.000-Hour Life Span 9. Even so. Ideal for Emerging Markets. the Radheyshyam family will save about €55 on electricity over ten years and help preserve the environment. they should also emit pleasant. For each ton of CO2 saved. In doing so.” says Merz. explaining why Osram still needs to use the toxic heavy metal. has no extravagant designer lamp shade. “That’s a good idea — and we’ve already got the lamps in stock to replace them with. principally in Africa and Asia. The modest energy consumption of fluorescent lamps also saves money. and it was approved in 2007. which it can resell freely to refinance the project. their luminous efficiency would be two-thirds lower.3 kg CO2 15 x 60 W light bulbs (1. And Osram itself will receive emission certificates from the UN. a random survey of Dulux EL Longlife lamps’ lifelong electricity use is conducted. the new lamps will cut CO2 emissions by around 800. Since these certificates can be traded freely.2 kg CO2 110. Specifically. Nevertheless.789 MJ 599. it has a special lamp that is so innovative that you won’t find it everywhere in Europe yet.817 MJ -7. power supplies are improved because there are fewer demand peaks. While watching the new energy-saving lamp being installed.000 hours. In India. The top part of each lamp is manufactured in Germany. Since April 2008.5 = 417. With this in mind. They get the newest technology almost as a gift — the Radheyshyam family paid no more for the energysaving lamp than for a conventional bulb.4 kg CO2 420. It’s also important that the lamps have a dimmer function and can be easily integrated into existing lighting systems. and will save money in the bargain. specially developed measuring instruments will be installed in 200 households to record average daily use of the lamps for the UN. Ultimately.33 kg CO2/lamp x 7.3 kg CO2 Source: OSRAM 106 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 107 .4 kg CO2/lamp x 1 = 109. Still. an energy-saving lamp saves a total of one megawatt-hour of electricity during the same operating life span.000 of these lamps to India’s households in April 2008 as part of the United Nations’ ”Clean Development Mechanism” (CDM). At the same time. there is already a fluorescent car headlight on the market known as “Xenarc Hg free” that employs a potassium-iodine compound that produces sufficient lighting power without any mercury. The Radheyshyams pay 25 euro-cents for the Dulux EL Longlife.87 kg CO2 Use 109. “For the lamp itself the users pay a small symbolic amount.78 kg CO2/lamp x 15 = 596. “That’s more than a tree can absorb during the same period. which rely heavily on hydro-electric power. After all. the father merely has to sign a form. What’s more. though: They contain mercury. “The idea is to reduce carbon dioxide emissions in developing and emerging markets substantially with the most modern lighting technology — for the benefit of everyone. Osram is offering free energy-saving lamps in exchange for energy-hungry incandescent bulbs. that a new business model can be created in this way. The savings actually realized must be verified by independent organizations accredited by the UN — for example by Germany’s TÜV.7 kg CO2 Total: 599. The first port of call is India. Daniel Schwarzfischer How Much CO2 Does a Lamp Save? The UN’s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) was enshrined in the Kyoto Protocol.723 MJ of primary energy used -2. because of the large number of coal-fired power plants. fluorescent lamps pay for themselves after about 800 hours of operation — and save their owners €250 over their entire life span.0 tons (the global average of all power plants is 0. On the other hand. the Radheyshyams do not have to concern themselves with the process. These pinhead-sized lamps can already compete with fluorescent lamps in terms of efficiency.” says Bronger. This is a complex process. and can handle power failures.000 tons over ten years as compared with use of their conventional counterparts. the company is producing an environmental balance sheet for light-emitting diodes. both of which have practically the same brightness. it’s also because the energysaving lamp can operate for 15. That’s because even though the production of one lamp requires five times the energy used for a conventional bulb. CO2 emissions per MWh vary according to region between 0.5 kg CO2 Use 55.” he says. Energy-saving lamps do pose one environmental problem. The data will be documented in regular reports.” says Bronger. “Our goal is to market only those products that are more environmentally friendly than their predecessors. while the bottom part. natural-looking light. which is an advantage for the environment. Its calculations are based on how much greenhouse gas a region would produce if everything were to continue as it has up to now.” says Merz. For the sake of comparison. which corresponds to half-a-ton less in carbon dioxide emissions than a conventional bulb. despite the high initial investment of the project. its mercury content is extremely low.000 h each) 7. In countries such as Brazil. it saves them cash every month. because they are long lasting. from the Indian city of Visakhapatnam.000 h) It can be switched on and off countless times.906 MJ 6. the international division of work makes no difference in the product. “Without mercury. he Radheyshyam family. Osram receives an emission certificate from the UN. is ideal for use in emerging markets.” Merz explains. The collective energy consumption of 15 light bulbs is therefore five times higher than that of a single energy-saving lamp that burns for exactly the same amount of time. the lamps hold only one tenth the mercury that fluorescent lights had around 30 years ago. “Our methodology is designed to ensure that the old bulbs aren’t used any more. but future plans include other countries. In the next ten years. What the researchers found was a huge difference in energy consumption. and use of new materials should significantly increase their luminous efficiency. that’s a bargain.5 = 2. The lamps are assembled in India. the family’s electricity bill will be cut by €55. How much of this could be avoided using energy-saving lamps is then calculated. of Osram.” A maximum of two bulbs will be exchanged in each household.000 h each) 1x 11 W DULUX EL LONGLIFE (15.575 tons). It’s Osram’s Dulux EL Longlife energy-saving lamp. This is a win-win situation. But there’s no time to relax for Osram’s lamp developer. Although they cost around €10 more than a conventional light bulb. the price they can command is variable. participating households benefit. India’s New Light In India. Osram experts estimate that the lamp will save roughly one megawatt-hour (MWh) of electricity during its service life. which will be sent to the UN. The German Technical Supervision Association (TÜV) will verify the details.Energy Efficiency | Lamps | UN Certificates By trading in their old incandescent bulb for a modern energy-saving light source. which in turn reduces power failures in the somewhat unstable Indian power supply network.18 kg CO2/lamp x 15 = 2. In addition.7 kg CO2 Total: 420. Osram is collecting the old bulbs and recycling them in an environmentally compatible manner.934 MJ ing to protect the environment. energy-saving lamps — seen in a life-cycle context — consume less energy during production. the CO2-saving effect would be considerably less — which is why not all countries are suitable for such CDM projects. Not only is this due to the fact that the energysaving lamp can convert more electricity into light than heat. over the long term. environmentally-sound lighting should create a relaxing effect. a lamp developed on the basis of environmental criteria is worthless if no one buys it.7 kg CO2 Use 39. it has become the first lighting manufacturer to participate in the UN’s Clean Development Mechanism.4 kg CO2 Total: 110. Kroban’s dissertation serves as a valuable foundation for further environmental balance sheets being drawn up by Osram for new products. Even in India. Of course. The Dulux EL Longlife. Osram scientists have examined the energy consumption and life spans of various types of lamps.5 euro cents in India and that a single lamp will save up to a megawatt-hour over ten years. mercury will have to be eliminated from the lamps. For all the complicated organization involved in the campaign.” says Bronger.7 kg CO2/lamp x 7.4 kg CO2 Production 0. even if a different design would offer a technologically superior solution. the project will help the environment. In addition. Given that a kilowatt-hour of electricity costs around 5. “The response to the information events that Osram mounted in cooperation with the local power supply company was very positive. In comparison with conventional incandescent bulbs the new lamps consume 80 percent less electricity. so they get the feeling that they have invested in progress.5 x 42 W HALOGEN ENERGY SAVER (2.2 kg CO2 Production 0.” says Project Manager Boris Bronger. The pilot region for the exchange of bulbs was the Federal State of Andhra Pradesh on India’s east coast. Moreover. “That’s why we always have to determine how appealing a lamp is to consumers. Osram is confident. a total of 15 bulbs would have to be produced to achieve a similar total luminous output. Osram started offering 700. or 15 times longer than the incandescent bulb. but thanks to the lamp’s reduced power consumption. so that better-off Indians will have no advantage over poorer ones. is made in Italy.85 and 1.” says Merz. They’re already busy working on the next generation of innovative lighting Andrea Hoferichter systems. Such a study could necessitate altering lamp shapes to conform with consumer tastes. with its complex electronics. 1. Together with partner RWE.” Merz reports. Osram has been the first lighting manufacturer anywhere to replace incandescent bulbs with energy-saving lamps in accordance with this concept. Osram submitted its methodology in 2004. Schwarzfischer / Lackerschmid -30% CO2 -81% CO2 Production 0. In fact. one of Osram’s most innovative lamps. Comparing Life Spans. Conversely. he’s unlikely to have to buy a new lamp.
Adds Dr. The corporate sector should also tricity. the Advisory Board on Energy. thanks to new electrostatic precipitator technology now being developed in Munich. So I think we need to reorient our fiscal instruments such that they carry us to a state of environmental sustainability. The emphasis in India is on reducing local pollution. What’s the role of the Internet in this? Pachauri: Fortunately. the government is working to make the Internet accessible to more and more people in India. how can you run a New Sources of Hope Siemens is testing new technologies that will help developing economies and their poorest citizens. much greater public awareness. Are there ways in which a company like Siemens can help? Pachauri: Being a technology leader. thus making it possible to access the benefits of the Internet.S. Siemens can certainly make a major difference. We need to start reflecting on the simple things — things like using lights at home. I would also like to see much more R&D with a view to using agricultural residues on a large scale. Interview conducted in Spring. a strong NGO movement. and can. And this is again an area where a company like Siemens can get involved to come up with renewable energy technologies that can be used on a decentralized.” Shaped something like a corkscrew. my institute is working with a group of investors to develop a large-scale solar-thermal generation facility. and does not in any way affect food prices or displace food production. And if we can use energy more efficiently. He has been a member of the Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister of India. Where will India be in 20 years? Pachauri: I would like to see much greater use of renewable energy in this country because we have wind. safe water. In Bangalore. Vice President Al Gore. We need a shift in computer? So we need a package of solutions that provide electricity. will be pretty much on its way to bringing about improvements at the global level and certainly for its own citizens. We are talking about 3. the IPCC was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for the year 2007. But if he just does what he has stated. and a very active press. perhaps converting these to liquid fuels. for instance. The plant’s ash can be used for water purification. it produces carbon ash that can be converted into activated charcoal for local water purification and can even become a significant source of revenue if sold externally. a global organization focused on environmental sustainability. Here.000 to 5. And legitimately. 2009 not been very successful. while ensuring that these resources are accessible to the poorest of the poor. Many countries want to cut their CO2 emissions below 1990 levels. distributed basis. thus turning the corkscrew and exposing the water to its surface area. from soil degradation and water and air pollution to deforestation and loss of biodiversity. as a matter of habit. Dr. So it is not easy to pollute without attracting a lot of attention. trucked into a village. 108 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 109 . In fact. Pachauri. we have done a study for the Ministry of Finance on taxation of automobiles. to reduce its emissions. where 400 million people do not have access to electricity. When I step out of my office. solar. If there’s one thing that no one can do without. and biomass in abundance. But there are many associated problems. energy efficiency is in India’s best interest… Pachauri: Certainly. “This is a perfect example of a technology that can be scaled up to any desired size. the treatment system can be powered by the force of effluent as it cascades downward. is the Chairman of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). For instance. I don’t think there is any basis at all for a developing country like India. The Food & Agriculture Organization did a study on this. We should also encourage people to walk and use bicycles more. most important.” Arthur F. What technologies should be emphasized? Pachauri: Renewable energy technologies have enormous potential in this country. What policies are needed to accomplish this? Pachauri: We will need fiscal incentives and disincentives. and a Senior Advisor to the Administrator of the United Nations Development Program. We have a serious problem of energy shortages. my institute has been in the lead. The meat cycle is very intensive in terms of energy consumption. For instance. Pease Siemens researchers in Bangalore have developed a self-powered algae-based sewage treatment system and a mobile power plant that runs on coconut shells. “What is unique about our solution is that.” explains Peeush Kumar. One of the most important things such companies can do is to work with partners to ensure that technologies are customized for Indian conditions in such a way that they can be applied on a large scale. which is colonized with bacteria. which is a major training complex. compared to over 20 for the U. “But with our unique system. which is a precondition for the Internet. Already operating so efficiently that it meets U. uses no power from the grid at all. Pease ngineers at Siemens Corporate Technology’s (CT) Renewable Energy Innovation Center in Bangalore. I switch off the lights. there can’t be any at this point because our per capita emissions are about 1.S. What can individuals do to help the environment? Pachauri: One area where I think many consumers can make a difference is by simply eating less meat. it is clean. which reported directly to the Prime Minister. It is not going to be easy. we are trying to address the problem of the 1. we have work with our government on a set of policies that contribute to energy-efficient solutions. This set of impacts will affect every segment of our economy and of our population. It would be unethical and totally inequitable. requires little moisture. in rural areas with no electricity. What is India doing about these threats? Pachauri: We have very strong legislation. speciallyadapted microorganisms produce the oxygen themselves.S.Energy Efficiency | Interview Pachauri | Off-Grid Solutions What are the most significant environmental threats faced by India? Pachauri: We are confronted by a range of environmental threats. This is the kind of thing where Siemens can do a great deal. India are developing what amounts to a portable power plant. This plant grows under degraded land conditions. We now have differential taxes on small cars as opposed to big cars.S. A Corkscrew that Purifies Waste Water. Anal Chavan. Should India be working along these lines as well? Pachauri: As far as CO2 is concerned. even if it’s for five minutes. with only minimal additional treatment — possibly based on the activated charcoal from our coconut gasification system — turn sewage water into potable water. Pachauri holds PhDs in Industrial Engineering and Economics. A network of tunnels beneath the building ensures a constant temperature. it should be clear to people that there is an economic benefit to them when they build an energy-efficient building. emission requirements. This goes hand in hand with other lifestyle changes. India does not have any goals. my institute is engaged in a largescale project for growing jatropha for biodiesel. and to an extent the government has implemented its recommendations. “Most sewage treatment facilities have very high energy requirements because they rely on powerful aerators to support the bacteria that metabolize organic matter. I think the U. Arthur F.6 billion people worldwide who have no access to elec- direction in this country that has to translate into incentives and disincentives and. And to be quite honest. Zubin Varghese. They found that the entire livestock cycle accounts for 18% of all greenhouse gases produced on this planet. In the area of energy-efficient buildings. when coordinated action is required. 68. My institute has also launched a program called “Lighting a Billion Lives” — in which Siemens is involved through its Osram subsidiary. Pachauri and former U. department head for smart innovations at Siemens Corporate Technology India. who is responsible for energy systems development at CT India. So my vision is to see India move rapidly toward large-scale exploitation of renewable energy sources. the plant needs about 35 kg of coconut shells per hour to generate enough electricity for a typical Indian village of 50 to 100 families. If they don’t move.1 tons per person per year. For instance. What recommendations would you give the Obama Administration? Pachauri: All I would ask President Obama to do is to live up to the promises he has made.” explains Senior Research Engineer Dr. one of our buildings. Since 1981. Developed countries are the big polluters and the ones who have caused the problem. and a solar chimney allows hot air from the south-side rooms to escape. All of these are being affected by climate change on an increasing scale. some of our enforcement mechanisms are weak. and not as effective as they should be. What’s more. “the same technology — but with different organisms — can be adapted to treating water contaminated with chemical or petroleum wastes. E Reflecting on the Simple Things Dr.000 MW. “Our partial oxidation combustion process produces a hydrogen and carbon monoxide gas that is fed into a reciprocating internal combustion engine that generates 25 to 300 kW of electricity. it will require very little cooling water.” CT India is now working with Siemens Water Technologies to identify a village for a pilot facility for the new treatment technology. So I’ve been telling people to eat less meat. Pachauri has been Director-General of The Energy & Resources Institute (TERI). Rajendra K. Here. Siemens researchers are developing a sewage treatment system that can already remove 95% of organic substances and up to 99% of nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphates from effluent without any outside power source. But unfortunately. It is up to the developed countries to make the first move. In Delhi. Represented by Dr. For instance. Siemens is developing solutions that will transform the lives of people rich and poor. then more of it becomes available for others to use. To help them we have developed a solar lantern and solar-powered village charging station where people can drop off their lamps for charging during the day. Nevertheless.
” Ruminy says. Circulation is maintained by a powerful electric motor whose output is four times that of the motor that turns the dryer drum. dryers are becoming much more conservative in their energy demand. it comes into contact with this frame. the institute established that “the refrigerators. would be disposed of properly and not released into the environment at the end of the machine’s service life. “The energy in the hot dryer air and in the vapor is temporarily stored in the coolant and then used for lower energy consumption by far offsets the greenhouse gas potential involved. A compressor pumps the condensed and thus heated coolant into the copper pipes. By designing energy efficient appliances. This heated air then flows into the dryer drum. operation is responsible for more than 90 percent of the overall environmental impact of most appliances. Meanwhile. BSH engineer Kai Nitschmann was given the assignment to develop a clothes dryer equipped with heat-pump technology that would outperform all other dryers on the mar- ket in terms of energy efficiency. The results of the team’s efforts are preserved in a glass case in Nitschmann’s office. A visit to the developers at BSH Bosch und Siemens Hausgeräte in Berlin reveals how they achieved this success. Back in August 2006. As Ruminy explains. like that of a refrigerator. and resource consumption in production accounts for only a small percentage of the total resources used. humid air returns from the drum. steps would have to be taken to ensure that the dryer’s coolant. Moisture condenses as the air cools. “A heat pump prevents the energy contained in the vapor and hot air from escaping from the dryer. Bosch und Siemens Hausgeräte GmbH (BSH) of Munich. Specifically. A second aluminum frame works as a cooler. “If it hadn’t been for our Spanish colleagues’ experience with air conditioners. heating purposes. “Making things more efficient here will benefit the environment and save consumers money. Ruminy points out that the coolant. “Tiny pieces of lint in the wash can eventually clog condenser frames — and that nega- 110 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 111 . The team in Berlin also had to integrate a second new technology for optimizing efficiency: an innovative lint cleaner for the condenser. which is why BSH commissioned the Institute for Applied Ecology in Freiburg. and dryers must have a minimal impact on the environment in all phases of their life cycles. In the case of dryers. we always conduct a thorough analysis of its potential impact. That’s because appliances still account for around 40 percent of total energy consumption in private households — despite the efficiency gains achieved with refrigerators and such over the last ten years. since up until that point they had been used only in More than 90 percent of the environmental impact of household appliances results from their operation.” Nitschmann explains. counting their nuts and bolts. “Transport and recycling play only a minor role. which significantly reduces energy consumption. where it absorbs moisture.” says Ruminy. which has been cooled down by the cooled coolant. “Before we develop any new household appliance. Life cycle studies carried out by BSH environmental experts also show that such appliances mainly impact the environment through electricity and water consumption when they’re being used. which was just slightly above the world record at that time. however. each product idea is carefully examined in order to identify the most environmentally-compatible and recycle-friendly materials.” says Nitschmann. developers in Berlin were faced with the challenge of incorporating heat-pump technology into a dryer for the first time. we wouldn’t have succeeded so quickly. and the heat obtained from the air is then transferred back into the coolant. Heat Pump Strategy.1 kilowatt-hours for seven kilograms of laundry. Siemens’ new blueTherm heat-pump dryer consumes 40 percent less energy than is permitted within Europe’s top Energy Efficiency Class A — a new record. Arno Ruminy of the BSH Environmental Protection department. They also measured the dryers’ energy consumption and loudness. For instance.Energy Efficiency | Appliances At the heart of Siemens’ new dryer is an innovative heat pump (right). Designed to be the most efficient dryer on the market (center). In contrast. Germany is committed to minimizing the environmental impact of its products. In fact. Before the development process even begins. BSH is also meeting the needs of its customers. this figure is as high as 97 percent. and produce a design that allows the easy replacement of used parts. emphasize the importance of effective recycling.” says Ruminy. “We were looking to achieve energy consumption of 2. Unfortunately. however. copper arteries through which a coolant flows. Germany to determine whether the heat pump approach made sense.” The Freiburg experts did. Miracle in the Laundry Room Once considered to be power gluttons. conducts heat very effectively. and weighing their plastic parts. which repeatedly twist through two aluminum frames. refrigerators. air conditioners and heating units. “Every new device must be better than its predecessor in terms of environmental protection.” Nitschmann recalls. Their analysis resulted in the conclusion that the only way to achieve their ambitious energy efficiency goals was to use a heat pump — a technology that had never before been used in a dryer. he number-one manufacturer of home appliances in Western Europe. it is also a greenhouse gas. a strict internal guideline stipulates that all T washing machines. which is known as R407c.” says Nitschmann. The first of these frames is a heating unit in which the coolant transfers the heat it contains to the circulating air. determine the areas where material savings can be achieved. The first thing Nitschmann and his colleagues did was to define target values. blueTherm passed endurance tests (left) with flying colors. When hot.” says Dr. for example. There are. His development team at BSH’s Berlin plant started out by disassembling all types of dryers.
the sector’s market volume increased at an annual rate of 12–15 percent between 2003 and 2006.650 for the high-efficiency motor and €1. and water) < 0.9 years Source: Own research 5–10 years 2–3 years About 1 year 112 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 113 . and thus washing away the lint.5 % Raw materials (Non-ferrous metals.” For example. who managed the institute’s study. An important market for this sector is India. clean engines Biofuels. blueTherm consumes 1. “In other words. and eliminates the need for a filter.” says Nitschmann. we really are the energy-saving world champion. In addition.” says Nitschmann. plastics. Combined with a subsidy from the government’s building renovation program. the amortization period for the additional cost of the energy-saving motor is only 9. Some 3. Champion Energy Saver.” says Carl-Otto Gensch. which tools and machines should be used. bioplastics Automated material separation processes tively affects heat transfer. other) Distribution (Energy consumption for merchandise transport) 90-95 %* of appliance’s total < 0.S.000. compared to only around 500 million energy-saving lamps.Energy Efficiency | Appliances | Facts and Forecasts were put to work drying one wash load after another in the huge testing hall at the BSH plant. The result of all this development work was launched in September 2008 in the form of a dryer known as blueTherm.8 billion.300 for the standard motor. electric motors Decentralized water treatment Renewable energy sources. energy. Despite these pressures. “The dryer is in some cases even more economical than a clothesline. 110) Energy-efficiency-based building renovation through technical measures Energy-efficient solutions for rail vehicles Optimization of control system at combined cycle power plant** (p. energy.” Although at around €1. Condensate washes away lint. but will save its user €11 a year. where. which according to the EU Commission. use of a highefficiency motor to drive a cooling water pump at full capacity for 8.000 and reduces heating costs by €150 a year. The U. “We’re continually working to enhance efficiency. the condensate is pumped into a container on top of the dryer and then pumped out again four times per drying cycle. Among growth drivers here are energy-saving motors. A high-efficiency refrigerator (A++) is about €50 more expensive than a less efficient device. The effects of the current economic crisis were not taken into account in the study. “These endurance tests ensure that our appliances will operate error-free for ten to 15 years. which itself appeared unattainable just a few years ago. that figure could rise to approximately €900 billion by 2020. and chemicals) Source: BSH * Depending on product and use Alternative drive systems. as their higher procurement costs compared to conventional incandescent light bulbs are amortized after as little as 240 hours of operation — which is why the EU plans to ban the use of light bulbs soon.5 months. an appliance in a lower efficiency class BlueTherm dryer compared to efficiency class “B” dryer* (p. and dry several filters — it’s simply too much effort. and water) environmental impact Use (Consumption of water. That’s not all. but energy-saving lamps — from high-pressure gas-discharge lamps to LEDs — are also in demand. computer equipment. incandescent lamp of the same brightness Conversion from incandescent to LED traffic lights Speed-controlled energy-saving motor vs. is another major market that offers great potential for energy-efficient products. you don’t necessarily conserve energy by hanging up the wash to dry. According to the Indian Pump Manufacturers Association (IPMA). glass. and whether suppliers would be able to provide enough compressors in time to meet pre-series production. The Energy-Efficiency Pay Off T he purpose of energy-efficient products is to help decouple economic growth from energy consumption. the investment pays off. if you do so in a heated room. Investment in energy-saving lamps also pays off. “Contrary to popular belief. conventional motor A++ refrigerator vs. you’ll use more energy than the heat-pump dryer consumes.5 % Global Market for Environmental Technologies: One Trillion Euros Absolute growth of annual market volume 2005–2020 (in billions of euros) Energy efficiency Sustainable water management Energy generation Sustainable mobility Natural resource & material efficiency Closed systems. “There’s definitely potential for improvement. “The user would then have to clean. waste. wash. Ute Kehse Amortization period for additional costs (through energy savings) Energy-saving lamp vs. infrastructure projects. Sylvia Trage Whereas the global market volume for energy-efficient products and solutions totaled €450 billion in 2005.5–2 years 4–5 years About 3. energy-saving motors can help reduce the amount of electricity needed by pumping systems. Freiburg’s Institute for Applied Ecology also found that the heat-pump dryer’s overall environmental impact is only around half that of a conventional air-vented dryer. The pre-series machines And operating costs are expected to be reduced even further in the future.” says Nitschmann. but various new stimulus programs that focus on the application of energyefficient solutions make the future look bright for the sector. 88) * Based on a family of 4 using a dryer 229 times per year. The team rejected the conventional solution of removing lint with a filter. in any case. The appliance uses only half as much electricity as a conventional Efficiency Class B condenser dryer. Distribution of Impact over Appliance Life Cycle Production 4–9 % (Consumption of raw materials. for example. Amortization Periods of Energy-Efficient Solutions service life — and the customer doesn’t have to do anything. Nitschmann began considering which production lines could accommodate the new dryers. agriculture. when it totaled approximately €1. energy.1 kilowatt-hours for one load — so assuming average use and German electricity prices. steel. blueTherm is more expensive than a conventional dryer. An American Solar Energy Society (ASES) study found that market volume for energy-efficient household appliances. clean power generation Source: Roland Berger Disposal (Consumption of raw materials. Measures to boost energy efficiency in buildings and households also pay off in Germany. For instance. Here.” says Nitschmann. where business with pumps and compressors for use in the construction industry. and buildings (including windows and doors) was $160 billion in 2006 and will nearly double by 2030. In the end. blueTherm will cost €18 per year. lamps. Developments here are driven mainly by energy-efficient buildings. **Based on 50 starts per year and €80 per megawatt 800 hours of operation About 5 years 0. need no further convincing. Engineers therefore came up with a completely new solution: a type of shower for the condenser. which reduces energy consumption. insulation of a basement ceiling in a one-family house costs approximately €2. BSH marketing experts had expected to sell 10.000 washes. According to the institute. while a conventional air-vented dryer will cost approximately €50.000 units in blueTherm’s first three months on the market — but the company ended up selling 50. and 40 percent less energy than the permitted limit for a Class A machine.000 instead. use of alternative coolants and improved drive motors for the cooling cycle could save a few kilowatthours. In combination with frequency converters. and the processing industry is booming.7 billion incandescent light bulbs are now being used in Europe. While all these technical questions were being addressed and prototypes were being improved under various test conditions in the labs.9 kilowatt-hours per load.000 hours a year can reduce energy costs by €405 if such a motor replaces a 30 kW standard motor. recycling 450 290 190 170 90 20 CAGR 2005–2020 5% 6% 7% 5% 8% 3% Key technologies Measuring and control technology. According to the German Copper Institute. this investment will pay for itself in around ten years — or even sooner if oil and gas prices increase. according to an analysis conducted by the Roland Berger consulting firm. Consumers. tests conducted at BSH labs showed the energy efficiency of a so-called ADryer falls to the level of a less efficient C or DDryer if the filters aren’t regularly cleaned. “Energy consumption here is consistently low over the dryer’s entire World record: The blueTherm dryer uses only half as much electricity as a conventional dryer. everything went according to plan. Given procurement costs of €1.” Nitschmann reports. A normal air-vented dryer needs 4. account for four percent of global electricity consumption. each one handled about 2.” says Nitschmann. or 10 percent less than was originally planned. rushing over the condenser like a waterfall. for example.
There. Researchers hope to establish more clarity in this regard.” in which it uses a model for the thermal behavior of the building. By mid-2008. In this case. In addition to Siemens. “Unfortunately. costs. a good cost-benefit ratio is important. What we still don’t have are standardized interfaces between the architects’ CAD programs and the building management software. window shutters and lighting. the Research Institute for Materials Science and Technology (EMPA) in Dübendorf. Jürg Tödtli. “More than anything else. This makes local forecasts much more precise than previously. but also the weather forecast for the next three days. head of the Automatic Control Laboratory of the ETH Zurich. MeteoSchweiz has been using a weather model with a spatial resolution of 2.” says Dr.2 kilometers. To do this. here are some ideas that take a long time to mature. the control system might initiate the wastewater purification process. The hut is a joint project of ETH Zurich and SAC. It is therefore not really known at this point how much energy can be saved with predictive control systems in the medium to long term. In addition to such “rule-based” processes. ventilation and climate-control products at Siemens BT. “Of course. with its worldwide presence and many years of experience. because otherwise Forecasts that Come Home Regional weather forecasts are becoming increasingly detailed. “The issue of what the market will accept is essential. which consumes electricity. as well as sensor readings.” says Project Manager Dr. the system prevents solar energy from remaining unused due to premature charging of the battery.” predicts Tödtli. Heating. “The objective of saving energy is worth almost any amount of effort. Since early 2008. which opened in the Fall of 2009. but I see a major opportunity here.” Every 15 minutes. OptiControl offers “model-based predictive control. and MeteoSchweiz’s computer calculates the future weather for each cell. airconditioning systems and window blinds. “The objective is maximum comfort with minimal energy T basic outlines of the project and contributed its knowledge of the market for control engineering in buildings. each of which can predict conditions for three days on an hour-by-hour basis. To facilitate this change. entire rooms are being set up to analyze the effects of a huge climate control system that generates artificial environmental conditions. before the project ends. Researcher Dr. The project also includes three Siemens employees. with support coming from numerous sponsors and partners. the OptiControl mechanism adjusts the system. In combination with the weather forecast. near Zurich. Dimitrios Gyalistras from the Systems Ecology Group at ETH Zurich. Swiss researchers intend to combine modern weather forecasts with innovations in building technology and control engineering in a project called “OptiControl. A first impression of OptiControl is provided by the Monte-Rosa Alpine Hut of the Swiss Alps Club (SAC). But today’s building automation systems usually measure only current ambient values such as the outside temperature and incident solar radiation to control heating. it will be transmitted directly into buildings via the Internet. London. This would ensure a comfortable room climate and save on energy. as yet unknown information will be added in the form of new weather forecasts.” explains Tödtli. “Probably about a dozen parameters will be needed. Functions of this sort are not possible without powerful electronics. about a dozen researchers and five institutions have been involved in OptiControl.” As this scenario approaches reality. “I wrote the first essay on the use of weather forecasts for building automation over 20 years ago. and measurements for the temperature inside and outside. the expense of installation and operation must be as low as possible. Vienna and Marseille. The data includes temperatures and information on wind speed and solar radiation. An initial simulation indicated a potential of 15 percent in a typical office room with integrated control of heating. In addition. the automatic control mechanism must be fed with data such as the heat transfer coefficient of the walls and the heat storage capacity. The hut’s automation system was supplied by Siemens. field tests are taking place at Siemens BT’s laboratory in Zug.” For each additional step of advanced planning. and its first products aren’t expected to appear before then.” says Professor Manfred Morari. Since the hut is located at an altitude of 2. The OptiControl project will end in 2010. “For instance.” says Tödtli. Philippe Steiner. Researchers in Switzerland hope to use this data to automatically optimize energy use in buildings while keeping costs to a minimum. “Processing the data to generate forecasts involves a huge amount of mathematical calculation. That is expected to change in a few years. “OptiControl makes no sense if you need a supercomputer for it. who oversees the development of models at MeteoSchweiz. the software could run on a small automation station on the wall. the purification process will be stopped. At most. it must be largely self-sufficient.” Since May 2007. for example. On the other hand. a smart building manager might occasionally adjust these systems as appropriate depending on the forecast and personal experience. could be automatically increased when a cold front is on the way and reduced as soon as warmer temperatures are predicted. for example.” recalls Tödtli. OptiControl has to take into account the fact that more.” This understanding of the customer’s needs is contributed by Siemens. “No special PC will be required and the hardware for building control won’t be expensive either. A good example is the concept of using our increasingly accurate weather forecasts to optimize a range of building functions. one issue that still has to be resolved is how simple the models can be while still achieving satisfactory operation of the control system.” One member of the project is the Siemens Building Technologies Division (Siemens BT) in Zug. “Ultimately. “All of that can theoretically be calculated from the blueprint of the architect. “In practical applications. Jürg Tödtli (photo below) and partners are key players in the project. air-conditioning. our method demands a lot of memory and computational capacity. Siemens BT developed the there would be a risk of using up the power reserve in the battery and having to switch to the precious liquefied petroleum gas.” This way. “But only now are there processors that have enough power and are cheap enough. if bad weather is forecast.” says Thomas Frank.883 meters. Based on ground-level grid squares with this edge length. The scientists can thus measure how well a building control system reacts to fluctuating outside temperatures and how precisely it can adjust the required room climate. a large-scale study provided more numbers for hundreds of different scenarios and about a dozen locations — figures for one-room offices and for suites in Zurich.Energy Efficiency | Predictive Building Management Weather predictions and building automation will be tested in a pilot facility at 2. The organization’s meteorologists provide information on 24 weather parameters. and two institutes of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich: the Automatic Control Laboratory and the Systems Ecology Group of the Institute for Integrative Biology. Self-Sufficient Alpine Hut. OptiControl will also have to demonstrate its potential in that setting.883 meters. for example.” Weather Data Via the Internet. the control system can then calculate the optimal profile for the temperature of the heating water. prior user settings. no one knows the exact cost-benefit ratio of all of this. a Senior Scientist in the Building Technologies department. In this regard. OptiControl helps to manage the building. the number of possibilities increases by a factor of ten to 100.” says Dr. the latter include the Swiss Federal Office for Meteorology and Climatology (MeteoSchweiz) in Zurich. “when the battery and the wastewater tank are half full and sunshine is predicted in the near future. 60 layers of the atmosphere are defined. it uses not only the implemented rules and models. we won’t know how beneficial weather forecasts are.” Frank estimates. when the model had a grid resolution of seven kilometers. Christian Buck 114 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2008 115 .” says Morari. But today’s systems are not set up to perform such adjustments automatically. “As it plans the next control command. manager of the European research activities for heating. Siemens engineers are providing practical help. The trick is to get a simple microprocessor to perform these complex calculations. In the future. Power will be supplied by a photovoltaic system supported when necessary by a combined heat and power unit operated with liquefied petroleum gas. The EMPA contributed its expertise in building modeling.
it disconnects itself from the grid and produces up to one kilowatt of emergency power for specially vetted emergency power groups such as refrigerators. To meet the needs of a growing number of functions. however. depending on its size. buses. And specialists are already working on developing the next generation of microCHP devices. Current implementations permit the generation of a maximum of one kilowatt of electrical energy. store energy electrostatically. This high thermodynamic efficiency can make a major contribution to operating economy as well as environmental protection. These are among the most efficient methods of energy generation. More than 90 percent of the energy contained in fuel can be utilized by these systems. of which about 900 watts can be used directly in the home or fed back into the energy supplier’s grid. How to Generate a Kilowatt. the electronics monitor the feeding of surplus electricity back into the power utility’s grid. it needs to be temporarily stored. partly as driver assistance systems.” he says.000 / unlimited Nickel-metal hydride battery Lithium-ion battery Supercaps (double layer capac. Generator Households will soon be able to generate their own heat emand for resource-saving heat generation systems is growing.000 2. In countries where sales operations are about to be launched — the Netherlands. Charging the battery converts electrical energy into chemical energy. energy prices as well as insecurity on the part of consumers regarding the reliability of gas and oil supplies are also prompting researchers and developers to consider new heating methods. on the other hand.000 / 5 – 10 1.1 Electrolytic capacitors 0. In addition. the Netherlands. One driver of this development is the fact that well-insulated new buildings and renovated older structures have lower heating demand. director of sales and marketing at BT’s OEM Boiler & Burner Equipment. “We see a clear line of development toward the use of personal small power plants in singlefamily homes in place of oil or gas-fired boilers. and more powerful than their predecessors.1 s 0. One such method is the simultaneous generation of heat and electricity by so-called CHP (combined heat and power) systems. As a special feature. on average.” says Wolfgang Huber. Georges Van Puyenbroeck adds that. And that’s the case whether we’re talking about cars.V. Gitta Rohling Piggybanks for Power Whether at base or peak load.” he says. manager of technical innovation at Remeha B. In addition. Vaillant. this means that they have at their disposal their very own miniature cogeneration power plant. The device itself uses 100 watts. between 50. Huge European Market. In the future.” He sees great potential for the new product. nickel-metal hydride and lithium-ion batteries have a service life of between three and ten years. The burner for the Stirling en- Comparison of Battery Systems Energy density in watt-hours per kilogram (Wh/kg) 1. Product manager Markus Herger estimates that in its the first three years on the market.V. the electric motor will play a major role in making zero-emission mobility possible (p. then England and Germany — there are so-called electricity buyback laws. Although the idea of applying it to single and multi-family homes is D and electricity using a mini CHP device (left and above). their energy densities are low. subway systems or power distribution networks. Siemens launched the production of the control technology in September 2009. Burner Stirling engine gine alone produces five kilowatts of heat. However. “According to our market data. seven million wall-mounted boilers are sold in Europe every year. With this goal in mind. only the electrical generation is new. The temperature difference between the cold water and the heat provided is used to generate electricity.000 – 10. freezers. many manufacturers are already excited about exploiting this potential.01 10 100 Power density in watts per kilogram (W/kg) 1. “It offers simple access to alternative energy.000 10. vehicles needs a high-performance energy storage device. plans to enter the Dutch market in spring 2010.000 s 100 s Li-ion NiMH NiCd 1s 1 10 s Batteries 10 Pb Double layer capacitors 0.000 s 100 1.. emissions of carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxides are reduced. BT specialists are working together with manufacturers of condensing boilers. Simultaneously. This depends on how energy suppliers respond and on political decisions.000 / >5 >2. In this case. and emergency lighting. Siemens electronics control the heat output to keep the Stirling engine within its permissible operating range and provide the desired temperatures for home heating and hot water at the proper times. and will be fired by a variety of primary energy sources. The electric motor serves either a fully fledged second drive (in a full hybrid). Energy stores such as double layer capacitors. Control technology from Siemens ensures that the device. condensing boilers have produced only heat. One kilogram of diesel contains 10. lighter. because the fuel they use is transformed into electrical energy as well as heat — usually in the form of steam and hot water. their primary use is to cover peak loads such as engine starts or acceleration in hybrid applications. Until now. and the Baxi Group. “That is a key differentiating feature of our device. electronic components are taking over more and more functions. such as oil or various gaseous fuels from biomass. They last almost indefinitely and exhibit high power densities.000 Battery type Lead-acid battery Energy density Wh/kg 30 – 50 60 – 80 90 – 150 3–5 Power density W/kg 150 – 300 200 – 300 500 – >2. MicroCHP devices. who is responsible for development at Siemens BT. 60). chemical energy is converted back into electrical energy. They work as follows: A gasfired Stirling engine is integrated into a wallmounted boiler. while a lead-acid accumulator manages just 30 to 50 Wh/kg. and Germany. These will be even smaller. including Viessmann.Energy Efficiency | Combined Heat & Power Systems | Energy Storage How to Own a Power Plant Innovative heating systems not only provide warmth but also satisfy two thirds of the electricity demand of an average four-person household. but no electricity. An auxiliary burner can add between 10 and 30 kilowatts. Paul Gelderloos. as an auxiliary drive to provide a boost when starting and passing (in a mild hy- I Cold water brid). Batteries. For this reason.000 / 3 – 5 >1. streetcars. can do both. is certain that “the device is one of the most promising successors in the condensing boiler area. high-performance energy storage devices guarantee optimal power supplies in vehicles. Operation with liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) is also possible after appropriate readjustment of the device. The remaining electricity is provided by the power grid to which the microCHP device is normally connected.000 watt-hours (Wh). is able to switch on and off at the proper times.000 Service life in cycles / years 300 –1. Remeha B. installers know about boilers.000 10. When an electrical device is connected. Here. Until now.V.” laments Herger. They function on electrochemical principles. CHP technology has been limited to large installations. “Other countries are not yet as advanced. Siemens Building Technologies (BT). Experience has shown that the added cost of a microCHP device can be amortized within five years — but its price can be established only after the partners bring the device to market.” says Georges Van Puyenbroeck. has developed the electronics for a gas-fired micro heat and power cogeneration device (microCHP). and partly to save energy — particularly in hybrid vehicles that combine an electric motor with a combustion engine. Remeha B. the microCHP device can also operate independently of the grid. In road vehicles.) 116 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2007 117 . Scientists are now fine tuning the technology.000 and 100..000 microCHP devices could be sold — and that sales will continue to grow after that. f electrical energy is to be optimally used. Batteries’ power density is Chemical or Electrostatic Storage? Accumulators such as lead-acid. Siemens’ development partners began testing the new microCHP devices in about 400 households in Great Britain. Even if its advantages aren’t obvious at first glance. the microCHP device is a significant innovation. compared with only about 38 percent for electrical generation by a conventional power plant. full electric vehicles will be an important addition to this list. After about four years of development. For consumers.000. are heavy and their energy density is low. which provides not only heat but also two thirds of an average four-person household’s electricity requirements. new. or as an assistant when the vehicle has to stop and restart frequently (in the start-stop hybrid). for instance. which promote microCHP devices. which operates in parallel to the power grid. in contrast.
however. The train now operates in China and Spain. plastic. project head for Electrochemical Energy Storage at Siemens Corporate Technology. That’s why most of today’s hybrid vehicles employ nickel-metal hydride batteries with a capacity of 60 to 80 Wh/kg. Bochum and Beijing. Extremely high power density. since passengers there sometimes have to be protected from outside temperatures as high as 50 degrees Celsius. Passengers are kept warm by enhanced thermal insulation. A lead-acid battery is good for a maximum of around 1. special lubricants. The Velaro’s underfloor drive system can be adjusted in line with where it’s being used. The train’s insulation is also twice as thick as the German model’s. or so-called supercaps — devices that store electrical energy by separating the charges as soon as a voltage is applied. vehicles with these new storage systems might be as commonplace as today’s vehicles with their trusty lead-acid batteries. including simulated snow storms and -40 degree Celsius temperatures. as it consumes much less energy than a car or plane. The train has passed a gamut of tests. To ensure that passengers remain comfortable inside even when it’s freezing outside. Siemens is promoting the use of double layer capacitors. the ICE trains of the first and second generations (the Velaro's predecessors) were pulled by a driving unit similar to a locomotive. for example. One reason for this is that the track gauge on Russian rail lines is 85 millimeters wider than in Germany. As Russia’s first-ever high-speed train. since air intake from below could cause problems when tracks are snowed over. Alongside storage capacity. are associated with many applications that need a fast charging capability — for example. The latter was achieved by minimizing the number of thermal bridges. Every other coach is equipped with motorized running gear and bogies. Mild or start-stop hybrid vehicles can get by with the limited energy density of the supercaps. where it will immediately be put into operation on the Moscow-St. High capacitances are achieved by ensuring that the charges are separated by a distance of only atomic dimensions. since the area directly behind the train operator can be used as well. accumulators must be charged slowly to avoid damage. above all. the Sapsan is equipped with 800 sensors that monitor interior temperature. Supercaps have low energy densities — three to five Wh/kg — but extremely high power densities of 2. the Sapsan. in particular. reaching a maximum of 300 W/kg. The advantage offered by underfloor technology is that it provides 20 percent more space for passengers. and heavy snows. Lithium-ion or lithium-polymer batteries are even more powerful. For one thing. ice storms. The train will therefore have to face frost. in Madrid.000 farads. Cologne.000 W/kg. With this in mind. the Velaro has been fitted with a special air conditioning system. Hundreds of Sensors. or locomotive as a generator that recovers braking energy. There are notable differences on the inside. But vehicles. Engineers at the Rail Tec Arsenal (RTA) testing facility in Vienna actually deep-froze the train in order to verify the performance of all systems under bone-chilling conditions before sending it out into the real Russian winter. Charge separation takes place at the boundary layer between a solid body and a liquid. with 90 to 150 Wh/kg.” says Dr. Speed Success Story V elaro will have to prove itself from day one in Russia. The train was also thoroughly tested in a wind and weather tunnel to prepare it for temperatures that can get as low as minus 50 degrees Celsius. the Russian Velaro takes in air from the top rather than the bottom. Russia is now the third country. the Velaro was given a winter-proof design consisting of steel. most of which will never be noticed by passengers.Energy Efficiency Double layer capacitors called supercaps (below) are being used in streetcars such as the Combino Plus (bottom). The rail grid in Spain also delivers voltage at 25 kilovolts rather than the 15 kilovolts provided in Germany. The resulting advantage is fuel and energy savings of between five and 25 percent. which are components whose design allows heat to flow to the outside. The capacitor packs can either be carried in the vehicle itself or permanently built into segments of subway lines. and will soon hit the rails in Russia. It’s comfortable. after Spain and China. This makes it possible to use an electric motor in a hybrid vehicle. and by the use of porous graphite electrodes with a large specific surface area. fast and. economical. The latest addition to the Velaro series of high-speed trains built by Siemens’ Mobility Division is the Russian Sapsan. low too. They can be charged within a few seconds. will enter service at the end of 2009. streetcar. One thing all the Velaros have in common. In addition. The train can be adapted to where it’s being used. “In ten years. is an underfloor design that has motors. Supercaps could also be used in energy distribution applications. The sleek redwhite-and-blue train is based on the Deutsche Bahn railroad company’s ICE 3 model. Such a setup has already been tested in several subway systems — for example. the Sapsan is 33 centimeters wider than the German national railway company’s ICE 3. In Spain. it would need a 300-kilogram lead-acid battery in the trunk. Bernhard Gerl HighThe Velaro high-speed train is a true model of success. But that shouldn’t be a problem since the Sapsan (Russian for “peregrine falcon” as the Velaro is known in the country) seems to have been tailor-made for such a climate. which also makes it bigger in general. although the two are only similar on the surface — except for the color. depending on the driving cycle. however. and humidity. By contrast. The underfloor arrangement also directly transfers motor 118 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2007 Pictures of the Future | Special Edition on Green Technologies 119 . their service life is extremely long. brakes. and numerous safety features. as the Sapsan required several important changes. Dresden. Power utilities could use flexible energy stores such as supercaps to balance out load peaks and troughs.000 charge-discharge cycles. The devices release stored braking energy quickly when the vehicle accelerates. as power supply networks are constantly subject to load variations to which heavy turbines cannot react quickly enough. air pressure and circulation. They can take up and release large quantities of energy extremely quickly. For an electric car to accelerate as rapidly as a 90 kW gasoline-engine vehicle. Nickel-metal hydride or lithium-ion batteries last considerably longer. Supercaps offer capacitances of 300 to 10. of course. This means it can be fitted with systems for accommodating extreme heat or cold as well as mountainous routes with steep inclines. This regenerated energy is stored in supercaps and re-used when the vehicle accelerates again. to choose the Velaro from Siemens as its high-speed train. Petersburg line during the grueling north Eurasian winter at the end of 2009. the service life of an accumulator is also limited. | Rail Transport The Russian version of Siemens’ Velaro train. and at a million or so charge-discharge cycles. and transformers mounted beneath the rail coaches. when braking energy is harnessed in cars or streetcars. In general. Manfred Waidhas.000 to 10. This is due to the fact that the charge separation processes occurring within them are purely physical in na- ture.
hold 1. These Velaros will be equipped with the state-of-the-art European Train Control System (ETCS). who is responsible for making life cycle assessments of locomotives for Siemens Mobility in Allach. Europe has had more than 20 different rail signaling and security systems — but the ETCS will change that. which is also 33 centimeters wider than the Western European train. engineers use life cycle assessments that can help with the selection of the most environmentally compatible designs. power to the wheels and distributes the power more efficiently throughout the entire train. the biggest cities in Spain. comfort. Basically. the transformer’s high efficiency and the aluminum’s light weight counterbalance these energy costs. which is what it will face along the mountainous 650-kilometer high-speed route from Barcelona to Madrid. which makes it far more economical not only than a plane but also than a car. trains will no longer have to slow down at national borders in coming years.33 liters of gasoline per seat per 100 kilometers. The Velaro consumes the equivalent of 0. not to mention the time spent for checkin and waiting. Ansgar Brockmeyer. the Sapsan will initially travel at approximately 250 km/h. as Leitel points out. as a plane flying from Frankfurt to Paris produces around 83 kilograms of carbon dioxide per person. passengers are spared the long trip from city centers to airports. Plans call for a Beijing-Shanghai high-speed line to go into operation in 2010 with 100 new Velaro trains. Still. is convinced that an additional 8. which significantly reduce component wear and tear as compared to conventional traction unit concepts. and have a top speed of 350 km/h. With 16 coaches each. Germany’s Deutsche Bahn has also selected the Velaro to succeed the ICE 3. Tim Schröder T he assembly hall is filled with locomotives. the equivalent of 0. It then feeds the energy into the grid for use by empty trains going uphill. points to a yellow locomotive without a roof. Leitel explains. High-speed rail links between major cities offer a real alternative to plane and car travel in many countries. the train will cut travel time for the approximately 650 km from Moscow to St. Europe already has an extensive high-speed rail network that is 6. which also makes it heavier than similar units. while the Velaro generates just under 10 kilograms — or 90 percent less.060 passengers. The new route will cut travel time between the two metropolises from six hours to only about two and a half hours. Another locomotive. but to cities in Belgium as well.000 tons. “That one’s going to Australia. It’s therefore not surprising that the Velaro is an integral part of Siemens’ environmental portfolio.” says Brockmeyer. all of this results in higher energy consumption during manufacturing. “That makes this business sector extremely interesting for us. “Worldwide. The system will enable the new German Velaro to travel across borders not only to Paris. some of them missing their roofs. The California High-Speed Rail Authority. opening its first route — between Beijing and the Olympics site in Tianjin — in time for the 2008 Summer Olympics. which is why its roof is made of aluminum. Worldwide Success Story. others without control cabins. they will be able to speed through without interruption from northern Europe to the Mediterranean coast. since the train came out on top in five of eight calls for tenders in the past few years. the head of Siemens Public Transit. Because of Russia’s 3kilovolt catenaries. which represents a milestone in cross- Timely Trains Today’s locomotives should consume as little energy as possible — not just when they are in operation. The Velaro is indisputably the fastest multiple-unit train in the world. The Velaro’s design. and technical features have apparently convinced a lot of rail operators. Its normal cruising speed with passengers and luggage is up to 350 km/h. But. border train travel. other parts of the locomotive must be lighter. a country where rail service operators recently started making energy conservation a higher priority. In fact. Life cycle assessments can help with selection of the most environmentally-compatible designs. 120 Pictures of the Future | Special Edition on Green Technologies Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 121 . for example. Petersburg on the Baltic Sea by 45 minutes. their use is being reconsidered in the United States. although the speed is of course continually adjusted to the immediate surroundings. Germany. and we expect to see growth rates as high as seven percent in Asia and Europe. The Chinese Velaro. it’s ready to travel at a top speed of 404 kilometers per hour. can accommodate 600 passengers. It therefore makes sense that high-speed trains are becoming more and more popular. Up until now.” he says. after only a few years of operation. This makes the Velaro the world’s only high-speed train that can handle inclines of up to four percent. High-speed trains are also superior in terms of energy consumption. Germany. In order to compensate for the transformer’s additional weight. Martin Leitel.” China opted for the Velaro some time ago. Thanks to the ETCS. While a trip on the new crossborder high-speed line between the centers of Frankfurt and Paris takes a little more than two hours longer than a plane flight. The system collects braking energy generated on downhill stretches by trains full of coal that are traveling from the interior of the country to the coast. In view of the benefits offered by high-speed rail technology. Instead.000 kilometers long. thereby eliminating practically all remaining obstacles to the consolidation of the European high-speed rail network. but also during production and eventual recycling. Among other things.33 liters of gasoline per seat per 100 kilometers — much less than a car. these trains will be 400 meters long. The Velaro’s drive system also offers the advantages of a distributed structure and uniform power transfer. is for a European leasing company. has determined that a link between Los Angeles and San Francisco could reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 58. When it is delivered to the customer from the Siemens plant in Krefeld. The company has ordered 15 new trains that will begin operating when the 2011 winter schedule goes into effect.Energy Efficiency | Rail Transport | Rail Systems At a Siemens locomotive factory in Allach. the Velaro consumes an amount equivalent to the savings that could be achieved by shutting down a major coalfired power plant. Russian Railways plans to expand its highspeed network so as to allow the Sapsan to reach higher speeds.000 kilometers of high-speed track will be added to the network by 2025. It’s equipped with a transformer that achieves optimal efficiency because it was built using more copper than is usual. And some are even mounted on temporary platforms that make them appear to be floating on air. the model will be the first electric locomotive on the island continent to be equipped with an energy recovery system. But even at that speed. rail traffic volume is growing at an annual rate of three percent. Naturally. Top speed of 404 km/h.
and other countries plan to introduce emission trading systems for the transportation sector. however. each application scenario must be carefully studied in context in order to develop optimal measures. People tend to confuse the two. among other things.” Leitel explains. which makes it easy to disassemble them. Leitel says he’s certain it pay for themselves within two to three years. 6. and trams are built.” Nevertheless. This argument is familiar to Dr. Struckl calculated down to the last detail the energy balance of the Oslo subway system — probably the most efficient subway in the world in terms of resource conservation. Siemens offers devices that store braking energy either on trains themselves or as stationary units on tracks. Fall 2007. who works at Siemens Mobility in Vienna. What’s more. says Struckl — even though the system already consumes around pay dividends.2 kilos of elastomers. says Stuckl. including steel and insulation elements. don’t contain heavy metals. The LCA. “When transport companies also begin to bear the cost of carbon dioxide emissions. This begins with the manufacturing process and continues all the way through the product’s life to disposal. meaning that its trains can get by with less heating and that an investment in improved insulation wouldn’t really pay off anyway. depending on the type of use. Subway trains such as those in Oslo. but cautions that “the locomotive market is price-sensitive. Although lightweight construction with plastics and composites reduces operating energy consumption.000 and 400. Experts estimate that an additional 30 percent in energy savings could be achieved in actual operation and that the associated costs would be recouped in one year. whose logo still adorns the front of the factory hall that Siemens took over in 1999. This database reveals. The market for these products is also extremely price sensitive. a country that uses a lot of renewable energy. As a result. explaining there is no such thing as a “good” or “bad” LCA. can still be improved. however. “We’re reviewing the entire range of materials now in use. workers in Allach install. Not every trend is as good as it sounds. What would A ten percent higher purchase price pays off for customers if energy efficiency is two percentage points higher. Struckl opens a copy of his doctoral dissertation from Vienna Technical University. Absolute numbers. a total of 84 percent of its materials can be recy- one-third less energy than its predecessor. Combining these two goals has proved to be a good idea. Prague’s run mostly underground and its winters are warmer. Instead.” Leitel explains. has a much lower CO2 value than one from China. Struckl’s goal is to turn the focus away from To maximize the environmental compatibility of trains. And it’s not just the emissions caused by operation of these powerful locomotives that need to be low. But much has changed over the To ensure that the associated analyses — also known as material balances — remain accurate. also be kept to a minimum. the same trains would emit 47.900 metric tons of CO2 equivalent if operated in the Czech Republic because most of that country’s the LCA of individual assemblies and toward the overall mobility system. The idea is to use batteries that will. For example. life cycle analyses are often a prerequisite for taking part in tendering processes. an aluminum panel made in Iceland. But unlike Oslo’s trains. but life cycle assessments address environmental concerns. it still wasn’t possible to market the environmental aspects of a product. When Struckl joined Siemens in 2003. such as those for CO2 emissions. Leitel believes that the material analysis process can be improved. Struckl warns against generalizations. produce only 827 metric tons of CO2 during a 30-year service life — a low figure due to the fact that 99 percent of Norway’s electricity is generated with hydro power. fort and expense. including 68. for example.Energy Efficiency | Rail Systems Such conflicts are a part of Leitel’s routine. “The ideal would be to loosen a few bolts and have the whole locomotive break apart into sets of unmixed materials. with the remaining weight accounted for by other materials. Mobility in Context. And the recycling phase generates savings of 100 metric tons of CO2 because over 95 percent of the materials in a modern locomotive are recyclable. A locomotive also shouldn’t be too light because it has to pull a train 20 to 30 times its own weight. so the sales price is still often decisive. Just a few mouse clicks is all it takes to evaluate specific assemblies or material classes and determine their proportion of total weight. When asked if all the environmental effort that is now being implemented will ultimately pay off in the form of orders. this would require too much ef- A database lists the primary energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions associated with different materials. Recyclable Subway. “We make a general estimate of the energy consumption and emissions of small components. p. it also poses recycling problems. These materials — for the most part metals and coolants — are reused. Bernd Müller 122 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 123 . customers are well aware of the fact that the purchase price of a locomotive is only around 15 percent of the cost of powering it throughout its service life. 70). as well as regional Over a service life of roughly 30 years. for example. Siemens’ Complete Mobility concept attracted lots of interest at the Innotrans fair in September 2008 in Berlin.6 kilos of glass. These days. Another database lists the primary energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions associated with each material. for example.” he says. where most electricity is generated in coal-fired power plants. their modern counterparts are subject to strict environmental regulations. years. Leitel relies on an extensive database containing thousands of parts numbers and information on the materials used in each component. developers must now plan to recycle as many components as possible. that the left door of a locomotive control cabin weighs 87. and energy-saving innovations here have to cled.” Leitel points out. says Struckl — but they’re not contradictory. Life cycle costs have to do with costs. While steam locomotives churned out enormous amounts of soot and carbon dioxide.000 metric tons of CO2.” predicts Struckl. Siemens locomotives are designed to be efficient — for instance by returning braking energy to the grid that is generated when traveling downhill. as well as traffic management systems that intelligently network rail and road transport. which Siemens is testing as a prototype (see Pictures of the Future. his job at the Allach locomotive factory near Munich is to ensure coordination with customers when drawing up custom-tailored technical specifications for their locomotives. The company also supplies efficient technologies for producing electricity at power plants and transporting it to tracks. which means that it is not necessarily good for the environment. electricity comes from coal-fired power plants.” he says. On the other hand.1 kilos of aluminum. With regard to the Oslo subway system. but today LCAs are a normal part of the tendering process. The material analysis does not extend down to the last bolt. railway cars. the rest are burned and the resulting energy is exploited. Munich has been a locomotive production site since 1841 — at one time under the name Krauss-Maffei. With freight trains it’s clearly locomotive operation itself. given that greater energy efficiency usually has a rapid and positive effect on life cycle costs. Materials Review. Walter Struckl. There isn’t much left to improve here because the rail cars are held together with hook-and-loop fasteners rather than glue. would be a more efficient drive unit like the Syntegra bogie with its permanently excited gearless electric motors.1 kilograms. In addition to conducting life cycle assessments (LCAs). “So a ten percent higher list price for a locomotive still pays off for the customer if energy efficiency is two percentage points better than the competition’s. which obviates the CO2 emissions that would have been produced if the materials had been manufactured from scratch. environmental impact throughout their entire life cycles must differences. however. companies in Norway receive a cash bonus for every kilowatt-hour of energy saved. a locomotive in Europe emits between 200. many of them will quickly become interested in our innovations. Locomotive production results in only about 250 metric tons of CO2 emissions. and 4. “Customers simply want a good locomotive that meets the highest environmental standards. The analysis ultimately produces charts that show where energy consumption is highest. as well as coolants made of biodegradable materials — and to generally ensure that new designs have more recyclable parts by avoiding use of composites as much as possible. In this work. mostly thanks to more efficient heating and more effective insulation. where subway trains. which will soon become the legal responsibility of the manufacturer. Quick LCAs. highly energy-efficient LED signal lights. don’t reveal much in and of themselves.
The key to making lamps more environmentally friendly is thus making them more energy-efficient. one of the highest mass transit quotients in the world. Nikola Wohllaib model city for modern mobility. Vienna (pictured above) and Budapest have already fully converted. The motors are supported by current collectors that draw power from overhead lines as if they were streetcars. efficiency is absolutely vital.000 since 2006.de EPEA Internationale Umweltforschung www. power generation using coal is becoming increasingly efficient and sustainable — as shown by the Yuhuan plant. 113. and flue-gas purification methods that separate CO2 afterwards. mechanical monsters excavate and transport ore. (p. a member of the executive management at Finance & Leasing. making these mining giants fast and efficient. the earth’s temperature must not rise by more than two degrees Celsius. it would help to attract more customers to public transport. including mobile water treatment systems and small power plants that generate electricity from coconuts. our financing solution won’t pose any financial risk for the city in question. and safety technology.Energy Efficiency | Vienna Traffic control centers. And the city is now putting our complete mobility concept into practice. Summer 2009 saw the launch of an overarching transport management system that benefits 200. As a key transport and logistics hub at the heart of Europe. whereas LEDs are genuine long-burners. For Germany as a whole and its 80. Thanks to new technologies from Siemens. entry to museums. Germany’s traffic lights would consume 1. Memmingen. Siemens is investing in the IGCC process. 78) Experts worldwide are working on concepts for generating power from coal without releasing CO2 into the atmosphere.epea. a subsidiary of Siemens Financial Services. The goal of the complete mobility approach is to network different transport systems with one another as effectively as possible. to ensure safety. In 2006 alone. some of which will be used to extend existing subway lines and build new streetcar lines in outlying districts. and pedestrians .com EU-Project CO2 SINK: www. 85) For power plants.” Grundmann explains. “Our financing model has terms of between four to 15 years.gfz-potsdam. in accordance with eco-balances. and point-of-sale systems can be connected to PTnova. What’s more. for example. As a result.000 or so traffic lights. 82. 121) Osram has studied the life cycles of various lamps from production to disposal. and.000 hours. 300 ultra-low-floor streetcars. and the blueTherm tumble drier that consumes half as much as conventional dryers. 92) In an interview. the central problem facing cities with ten million or more inhabitants is how to ensure mobility. with only a small fraction of consumption attributable to lamp production. with the repayment schedule calculated on the basis of potential savings.co2sink. Christoph Roth. which makes it very flexible compared to standard municipal loans.buildingtechnologies. Siemens is equipping these behemoths with electric drive LINKS: Siemens Energy Sector www. When replacing conventional bulbs with LEDs. the reduction in power consumption alone would bring savings of €140 million. These solutions include 44 high-speed trains for intercity connections and 40 subway trains as well as the associated control. In Germany. These tiny 10-watt light sources consume between 80 and 90 percent less electricity than the lamps in conventional stoplights.” says Grundmann. one of the largest streetcar networks in the world. These savings will finance the repayments over the 15-year term of the loan and then flow into city coffers.siemens. (p.” which covers the period until 2020. which Siemens is delivering to the city’s transport operator at the rate of 15 to 20 per year. 110. Holistic Approach. Two examples illustrate this point. the city plans to expand its public transport infrastructure while assigning a low priority to automobile traffic in the city center and promoting the interests of cyclists. Vienna is currently reaping the rewards of a long-term strategy that embraces all modes of transport. and Mannheim have all taken advantage of a customized financing solution provided by Siemens Finance & Leasing.3 billion kilowatt-hours a year. Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and Chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.ipcc. Any mobile or static ticket machines. The result: The life cycle assessment is largely determined by energy consumption during their operation. and it’s a trend we’re also seeing worldwide. Hans-Jörg Grundmann. “The realization of this complete mobility concept involves close cooperation with Siemens IT Solutions and Services. “That means you can use signal light units with only six or seven watts. 88) At many open-pit mines. Modern locomotives built in the most environmentally possible way. which means they only have to be changed every ten years.” explains Jörg Dethlefsen. “The study shows how successful Vienna has been in implementing an efficient transport strategy that could serve as a model for cities everywhere. a move that has brought it annual savings of €155. The system provides route planning and calculates travel times in real time across all modes of transport. One way to accomplish this is through energy-efficient solutions that can rapidly and substantially reduce power consumption in advanced economies. “Assuming the potential savings have been properly calculated. Fitted with conventional lamps. “Municipalities can recoup the costs of replacing conventional lamps with LEDs within two to four years. low-floor streetcars (pictured left) and many other measures have helped turn the Austrian capital into a role model for holistic mobility concepts. which boasts an excellent public transportation system.” In Europe. The fruits of this collaboration include a control system for public transport called “PTnova” that was developed with Wiener Linien and is now running as a pilot project. “The use of enhanced information and communications technology can make mobility chains more efficient and public transport more attractive. public transport accounts for up to 35 percent of total traffic. In a follow-up analysis — “Vienna: A Complete Mobility Study” — the same company has now shown that the study’s conclusions also apply to smaller cities such as Vienna. streetcar. Nikola Wohllaib such solutions could work in practice. product manager for signal generators at the Traffic Solutions Business Unit of the Siemens Mobility Division. 84) face climate change brought about by greenhouse gases such as CO2. (pp. libraries.” a study Siemens commissioned from UK transport consultants MRC McLean Hazel in 2007. CEO of the Siemens Mobility Division. This higher steam temperature is expected to make it possible to achieve 50 percent efficiency.” says Grundmann.” explains Dr. can gain added attractiveness through the use of the latest mobility concepts. ticket printers. a Siemens sys- tem to control traffic lights on the basis of traffic volumes. who estimates that the upgrading of traffic lights at 700 intersections can save a city €1.siemens. Transport experts from MRC McLean Hazel confirm that Vienna is one the world’s most attractive places to live and a In Brief Multiple studies have confirmed that we systems that can move loads of up to 600 tons. 76) Siemens is developing 700-degree Celsius technology in order to further boost the efficiency of coal-fired power plants and thus cut CO2 emissions. and swimming pools — but also with special incentives such as bonus schemes for saved CO2 emissions. Wiener Linien plans to increase this share to 40 percent by 2013 with capital expenditures of €1. (p. customer management and the administration of season tickets. including 116 subway. 103) Siemens is developing such kinds of regionally customized solutions. Rajendra K. from which any location in the city can be reached within 15 minutes on foot. for example. with a view to smoothing traffic flow and to preventing gridlock. A study of a hypothetical city provides insight into how A Lots of Light for Little Power Outfitting traffic lights with light-emitting diodes (LEDs) can help cities slash their power costs.com/energy Siemens Mobility Sector www. with its 2.8 billion. many operators are avoiding major new capital expenditures and are modernizing existing plants instead. A Model of Mobility Even a city like Vienna. Pachauri. What’s more.2 million a year.” says Roth. It is supported with a host of traffic data. Refitting with LEDs has cut that figure to 175 million kWh — which corresponds to a reduction in generating capacity from 180 to 24 megawatts. fossil-fuel power plants can increase their efficiency by between 10 and 15 percent.000 commuters each day. It also automates the entire data flow. 68) 124 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2009 125 . and bus lines with 4. “Vienna is pioneering a holistic mobility strategy. signaling. Freiburg.com/mobility Siemens Building Technologies www.559 stops. Their study proposes the use of so-called personalized smart media for the city. “There are very few towns and cities in Germany that haven’t already converted in part to LEDs. it gives municipalities the scope to invest in other areas. The mass transit network run by transport operator Wiener Linien is over 960 kilometers in length. (p. Largely due to the economic crisis. (pp. in reference to Vienna’s “Transport Master Plan 2003. last but not least. which removes CO2 before combustion. China’s dramatic economic growth is primarily fuelled by coal.com Intergovernmental Panel On Climate Change (IPCC) www.” says Grundmann. PTnova’s capabilities are exactly in line with the recommendations of transport experts from MRC McLean Hazel. “We’ve already provided a lot of a products and solutions involved in the implementation of Vienna’s transport master plan. The Greater Vienna area has 227 kilometers of streetcar tracks. it makes sense to renew the control unit and convert the light to 40volt LED circuitry. “They run for around 100. however. To ensure the effects remain manageable.” says Dr. ccording to “Megacity Challenges. says he hopes India will make comprehensive use of renewable energies and provide the poorest of its citizens with access to these energy source. (p. Freiburg. 176 coal-fired power plants went on line — an average of one every two days. Thanks to smart upgrades. This smart card-based application would combine ticketing not only with access to leisure activities — for example.5 million inhabitants. What’s more.” Roth explains. On weekdays. has converted 53 traffic lights to LEDs. conventional lamps have to be replaced every six to 12 months. (p. which achieves a world-record efficiency of 45 percent (p.com Deutsches GeoForschungsZentrum (GFZ) www.ch Energy-efficient products are helping to decouple growth and energy consumption. most of which is gathered and processed by sensor systems from Siemens. PTnova controls all sales-related processes such as ticketing.siemens. Scientists based in Potsdam are studying how carbon dioxide can be sequestered underground and what happens to it there.” Dethlefsen adds.
London could eliminate another 6. The British metropolis has its work cut out for it. the environment often loses out. which consume 30 percent less fuel than conventional diesel buses. Per capita. according to the former chief economist of the World Bank.0 1.0 1. largely by reducing energy costs. for example. in addition to cutting water consumption and improving waste disposal. which put the costs of stemming the greenhouse effect at up to one percent of global gross domestic product per year.0 % Abatement costs €/t CO2 Greenhouse Gas Abatement Cost Curve for London 2025 from Decision-Makers’ Perspective Horizontal axis shows the CO2 savings potential in millions of metric tons per year. and six out of every ten people on earth will be living in cities by 2025.7 % 1600 1400 1200 1000 800 600 400 Source: © Copyright 2008 McKinsey & Company Source: © Copyright 2008 McKinsey & Company CO2 emissions — transport kg CO2/person London New York City Stockholm Rome Tokyo 750 0 -200 14 Diesel engine efficiency package Gasoline engine efficiency package Lighting in private households Condensing boilers Roof Insulation Lighting (commercial) Heat from existing power plants 16 18 18.1 47.4 Potential Mt CO2 2.2 million metric tons of CO2.800 kilometers of lines. They could help to eliminate more than 1. Technologies alone could cut London’s CO2 emissions by 44 percent by 2025 relative to 1990 levels. they result in no additional costs. The corresponding figure in Tokyo is 2. T The city’s 60 percent target could be brought within reach by means of new regulations.5 % 1. whether by converting it into biogas or through direct combustion.0 % -30.1 2. Petra Zacek Comparative Environmental Footprints 5. The energy thus extracted can be used to supply thousands of households with electricity and heat. but actually help to save money. At the local level. They already account for over half the world’s population.4 3.2 2. unchecked rise in temperatures could cost five to ten percent of global economic output. Greenhouse gas emissions in transport could be reduced by 25 percent by 2025 — a reduction of 3 million metric tons of CO2 per year. feasible objective. less than one percent of London’s economic output.9 metric tons of CO2 per year. This roughly matches the results of the 2006 report by Sir Nicholas Stern. Effectively applying all the analyzed abatement levers by 2025 would require an additional investment of about €41 billion.e. have for the first time determined the potential and costs of technologies for preventing greenhouse gases in cities. And it would be possible to eliminate another 400. the EU’s target is a reduction of 20 percent by 2020. about 65 million cubic meters of water could be saved annually — some 13 percent of total consumption — through economically reasonable measures like dual-flush toilets or more efficient washing machines and dishwashers. there are economically attractive alternatives to garbage disposal in landfills. A Siemens-McKinsey study shows how it can meet its objective.000 -20. for instance.0 Abatement levers that also make economic sense (13.8 1. An additional 3.7 Costs < 0 €/t CO2 (=cost savings) Costs > 0 €/t CO2 Shrinking our Footprints ities play a crucial role in the fight against climate change. and the vertical axis shows the cost per metric ton of CO2 emissions avoided. various combined heat and power plants offer the greatest potential: 2. i. more energy-efficient lighting and modern building automation systems.500 CO2 emissions — buildings kg CO2/person Mt CO2 -12. p. higher-efficiency cars are the most important abatement lever. This would enable it to meet its Kyoto objective (a reduction of 12 percent by 2012).5 Domestic waste kg/person 200 Air pollution kg particulate matter (PM10)/person Water m3/person 1990 2005 2012 Kyoto 2020 EU 2025 UK 2025 London * compared with 1990 levels 2025 After identified abatement levers Optimization of Wind power facilities onshore Floor insulation building automaExterior wall insulation Wind power facilities offshore Nuclear tion systems power Heat recovery Double glazing Replacing coal with gas Biofuels Newly built homes with extremely high energy efficiency Domestic appliances Gas engine in combined heat and power systems 126 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Fall 2008 127 Source: © Copyright 2008 McKinsey&Company CO2 emissions — industry kg CO2/person 45.7 25. better financing opportunities.5 3.6 200 Source: © Copyright 2008 McKinsey&Company 1. and lowering thermostats) and future technological innovations. It’s equally important to achieve greater consumer acceptance of energysaving technologies. They are responsible for about two thirds of total CO2 emissions in the city.Pictures of the Future | Sustainable Infrastructures for London London plans to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by up to 60 percent by 2025. savings. And almost 90 percent of that reduction would pay for itself thanks to the resulting energy savings. Over their lifetimes.0 25. taxes and subsidies. which was carried out with support from Siemens.6 9. The study also shows that urban initiatives should not be limited to CO2 reductions.2 1. This means enough water to fill 350 Olympic-size swimming pools seeps into the ground every day.8 45.60. nearly 70 percent of the potential annual savings of almost 20 million metric tons of CO2 identified for London can be achieved with the help of technologies that pay for themselves.4 Mt of CO2 savings) 2 4 6 8 10 12 39.1 million metric tons of CO2 savings per year. But when big cities must choose between environmental protection and economic growth.0 1. Reduction* . accepting an were to rely on renewable energies and gas instead of coal for the generation of electricity. For example. London intends to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 60 percent relative to the Kyoto base year of 1990 — an ambitious but.5 36. But economic viability and environmental protection don’t have to be at odds. changes in the public’s behavior (fuel-saving driving.2 million metric tons of CO2.4 .1 31. Big cities are very aware of this problem. About 75 percent of the potential reduction in CO2 levels could be realized by individuals and businesses in London if they opted for more efficient technologies such as energy-saving lamps and more economical cars.4 1.6. as the study shows. For comparison. When it comes to power generation. a high value compared to other cities. and education campaigns can help to change consumers’ attitudes and encourage them to make decisions that are not only economically efficient but also environmentally sound. a disproportionately large amount. So for each liter of water not consumed. By 2025. Values below zero are negative costs.abatement generation eration levers Decrease due to identified abatement levers C ants McKinsey & Company analyzed more than 200 technological abatement levers that would reduce the city’s CO2 emissions by almost 44 percent by 2025 relative to the 1990 figure of about 45 million metric tons. By 2025. management consult- 2005 Change to 2025 2025 Buildings Transport Decentralized Central 2025 after power and heat power gen. Here. Ambitious Aims. By 2025 about ten million metric tons of London’s CO2 could be eliminated through better insulation of Victorian buildings. and modern technologies can be applied to domestic waste for the purpose of creating new energy sources. About 64 percent of London’s municipal waste is currently disposed of in landfills — a large amount compared to cities such as Tokyo and Stockholm. Results of the “Sustainable Urban Infrastructure” Study: The greatest potential for savings lies in London’s buildings. Given the high and rising landfill fees and taxes in Great Britain. 14).3 metric tons (t) of CO2 per year.2 10.43. Cities and their residents are also responsible for approximately 80 percent of the greenhouse gases emitted worldwide.000 Comparative Emission Targets 2000 1800 Values per year (2005 or most recent available before) 2. and the national target of the British government is a reduction of 30 percent by 2025.5 liters less must be pumped into the system. in other words.0 % . in Stockholm it’s only 2. that represents 4. Changes in regulations. London’s water supply network is roughly 150 years old and loses over 30 percent of the water fed into its 4. People Made a Difference. as a study entitled “Megacity Challenges” showed (see Pictures of the Future. On the other hand. Spring 2007. Many of the levers they identified also make good sense in economic terms. use of public transit.7 million metric tons could be achieved at the national level if plant operators Where London Can Save the Most CO2 Mt CO2 47. Researchers taking part in the “Sustainable Urban Infrastructure” project.000 metric tons of CO2 in local public transport by using hybrid buses. almost 1. Using London as an example. Raw materials can be recycled.
37 3 2 1 0 Reference (2008) Target (2058) Bridge (2058) 0. Although an exception in Germany. Of course. a vibrant cultural life.5 percent to 2. The idea of improving the energy efficiency of a city like Munich on a more or less wholesale basis over 50 years sounds like a major challenge. ranging from energy-saving refrigerators to power plants.6 % 40. The study concludes that it is possible to transform a city like Munich into a practically carbon-free area. they are responsible for 75 percent of the world’s energy consumption and 80 percent of greenhouse gases.00 0. Their study “Munich — Paths toward a Carbon-free Future” presents a detailed look at what the city can do to minimize its environmental footprint between now and 2058. so that most of them will be able to cover their remaining energy requirements autonomously and even feed excess energy into the grid. facades.5 TWh 128 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 129 .0 TWh Electricity 2. It is therefore crucial not to scrimp in this area. Is there any good news about cities? Well.3 % of CO2 emissions in Munich (2008) -32% -54% Total: 2. The very fact that they are not only the biggest culprits in climate change. energy companies.99 LPT electricity LPT biofuel LPT fuel (fossil) MIT electricity MIT biofuel MIT fuel (fossil) MIT: Motorized Individual Transport LPT: Local Public Transport Source: Wuppertal Institute. Both of the Munich scenarios undercut this target substantially. and geothermal energy. for example.5 TWh Transportation 5.28 1. Little wonder then that Munich is one of the few cities in Germany that is set to grow in the coming decades. however. yes. Cutting CO2 by 80 to 90 Percent. 2008 From coal 2. insulation is by no means the end of the story.8 TWh Trade + Industry 11.200 to €2.00 2.6 PJ = 122.2m t Natural gas 15. they are storing up trouble for themselves.3 TWh Fuel 5. Although metropolitan areas cover only one percent of the earth’s surface. Home Power. In 2008. More has to be done if CO2 emissions are to be cut to almost zero. as well as a general willingness to invest in greater use of renewable en- ergy sources such as wind. This will result in huge urban sprawls that consume resources and pollute environments.50 3.5 TWh Electricity 4. Yet such efforts are worthwhile.5 TWh From crude oil 2. C How can a modern city. it says.79 Coal-fired power plant with CCS 0.4 TWh 8. This. the rate at which such refurbishment is being carried out must increase from the current figure of 0. however.44 Total: 8. along with a clear commitment to efficient technologies. which translates into an annual sum of between €1. Improving the insulation of roofs.4m t Coal 7. will require close cooperation between municipal authorities. not least carbon dioxide (CO2).3 TWh Nuclear power 6. and a host of leisure activities.8 TWh Figures rounded. Most of the technology that’s needed is already available — and putting it to work would save money. In Copenhagen. since experts expect cities to be seriously affected by climate change. In the world’s newly industrializing and developing countries people flock to cities in search of work and education and in hope of a better life. ities are attractive places to live. Such heating systems are particularly efficient. This is not an unrealistic proposition. and Germany’s Federal Environment Agency predicts that by the end of the century Munich will see a significant increase in the number of hot days and “tropical” nights each year.7 TWh Renewables 1. but that they are so concentrated offers a good opportunity to tackle the problems they cause. From here. this scenario also applies to other areas. Another scenario — the so-called bridge scenario — is somewhat more conservative and assumes. results in a average CO2 reduction of almost 80 percent to approximately 1. on the other hand.2m t CO2 per annum per annum Munich’s Energy Requirements in 2008 Source: City of Munich.00 1. solar power. that increased efficiency in power generation will be offset by rises in demand and that individual transportation will remain similar to its present-day form. That would mean extra costs of approximately €200 a year per inhabitant — around one third of an average annual gas bill.18 0. since the study comes to the conclusion that measures designed to enhance efficiency generally pay for themselves over their lifetime.3 metric tons. The so-called “target scenario” adopts the very optimistic view that the vision of a carbon-free future can be more or less achieved over the 50-year span under consideration in the study. the study finds that it should be possible to reduce heating requirements for existing buildings from the current figure of around 200 kilowatt-hours per square meter per annum (kWh/m2a) to between 25 and 35 kWh/m2. The study sketches two alternative scenarios for Munich.03 Power generation: Accounts for 40. the additional costs involved in such refurbishment and the construction of new housing would amount to around €13 billion for the entire city of Munich. around 70 percent of all households are heated this way. for example. As such. for the first time ever. for example.44 Total: 5. 2008. In comparison.700 t hard coal equivalent Total: 7.0 TWh Space heating 9. Other measures designed to reduce CO2 emissions include the use of economical elec- CO2 emissions Primary energy from energy sector 40. or to drive to Italy and the Mediterranean. A new study based on the city of Munich shows how a major metropolitan area could make itself virtually carbon-free within a few decades.6m t Crude oil 9.50 2. Nevertheless. Both Munich scenarios also assume that the use of district heating will rise from the current figure of 20 percent to 60 percent.3 % TWh per annum Total: 4.75 6 5 4 0.50 1. since the key levers for climate protection have their biggest impact here. In order to ensure that the energy efficiency of most buildings is raised to the requisite level over the next 50 years.000 per inhabitant. the study assumes that the refurbishment of existing housing in Munich will conform to the Passive House standard and that all future housing will also conform to this standard. Based on the above steps.Pictures of the Future | Study of a Carbon-Free Munich Paths to a Better Planet Effective steps to cut emissions in urban areas can have profound effects on the environment.00 3. Bavaria’s capital. it’s only a short hop to go climbing or skiing in the Alps. The more conservative bridge scenario. reduce carbon emissions without having to compromise on living standards or risking a slowdown in economic growth? This is the question that has occupied researchers from Germany’s Wuppertal Institute for Climate. Although it is more expensive to build according to the Passive House standard than to implement the Energy Conservation Act of 2007. All of which is very true of Munich.4 TWh = 30% Total energy requirements: 29.0 percent per annum.92 Public transport: Accounts for 12.6 and €2.3 TWh Households 12. And last year a watershed was reached. Almost half of Munich’s CO2 emissions are the result of energy used to heat the city’s homes and buildings. By 2050 this figure is forecast to grow to 70 percent.28 1. The refurbishment of existing and construction of new housing in line with the Passive House standard would result in energy savings of more than €30 billion by 2058. very much in line with the trend toward ever-larger metropolitan areas. Moreover. despite population growth. Greenhouse gas emissions can also be reduced by the use of combined heat and power (CHP) systems. Stadtwerke München. half of the world’s population lived in cities. By 2058. At the same time.50 0 Reference (2008) Target (2058) Bridge (2058) Total: 1.0 TWh Electricity 0. since they utilize around nine tenths of the energy contained in their primary fuel. to reach crystal-clear lakes.38 0. They promise work. the city is.4 TWh Losses resulting from power generation and transmission as well as energy consumption in the energy sector: 11. The optimistic target scenario predicts that through the implementation of comprehensive efficiency measures the average CO2 emissions per inhabitant can be curbed by around 90 percent to 750 kilograms per annum by the middle of the century. the results are impressive in both cases.6 % of CO2 emissions in Munich (2008) Space heating and process heat 7.32 4. new buildings are to be fitted with solar power systems.0 TWh per annum From natural gas 3. Environment and Energy with the support of Siemens. this additional investment would be offset by energy savings of between €1. and the population. Shanghai. This means that four times as many homeowners must implement such energy improvements than is currently the case. In fact. the European Union’s environmental ministers came up with a target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions worldwide by over 50 percent and thereby to an average figure of less than two metric tons per capita. biomass. The major metropolitan areas of the world are thus in a unique position to lead the way to more environmentallyfriendly modes of living and doing business. 2008 Sources of Munich’s Energy Mix TWh per annum 9 8 7 2. 1 TWh = 3. estimates by Wuppertal Institute. is likely to suffer from storms and heavy rains. and basements would thus yield significant savings. while new housing will require only between 10 to 20 kWh/m2a. This includes the use of not only the best insulation and vacuum-insulated windows but also ventilation systems that recover residual heat from the houses’ exhaust air before it is blown outside. The Munich study analyzes in detail which measures will achieve the greatest reduction in CO2 emissions and whether they are economical.6 billion per year.16 Solar-thermal electricity generation Wind power on-/offshore Biomass Geothermal Hydroelectric Photovoltaic Decentralized CHP Centralized CHP CCS: Carbon Capture & Storage Munich’s Transport Energy Mix 12. on the basis of the IPCC World Climate Report of 2007.68 0.
The study assumes that electricity will be increasingly generated on a decentralized basis — for example. experience clearly shows that people’s behavior can be nudged in the right direction by the use of appropriate financial assistance and incentives combined with targeted information campaigns.549 8 6 4 Company Number and street ZIP. English) Pictures of the Future.5 % -79 % 77 % Total: 3. 2008 3. And that is almost always the case.de. and Turkish) CO2 Emissions Per Capita -87 % 5. According to the study. 2008 I would like a free sample issue of Pictures of the Future I would like to cancel my Pictures of the Future subscription My new address is shown below Please also send the magazine to… (Please check the respective box(es) and fill in the address): 12 10 Title. The large number of electric vehicles in Munich will also help to buffer fluctuating loads from photovoltaic and wind sources. a view to 2025 Available issues of Pictures of the Future: Pictures of the Future. which supply not only heat but also electricity for residents (see p.siemens. Instead of building shopping malls on green field sites. the study favors urban neighborhoods in which homes. Frequently it is high costs that prevent a wholesale shift in attitudes and the widespread use of low-energy technology.000 6. or e-mail it to firstname.lastname@example.org/pof (Pictures of the Future on the Internet. Please use “Pictures of the Future. French. electric car batteries will serve as an intermediate storage system.a. and stores are close to one another. many more trips can be completed on foot or by bicycle. English) Pictures of the Future. The authors also advocate making public transit more comfortable in order to encourage its increased use. city Country Telephone number. English) Pictures of the Future. 2008 2. they say CO2 Emissions by Sector Thousands of metric tons CO2 p. Fall 2006 (German. In addition to analyzing Munich as a whole.000 Source: Estimate by Wuppertal Institute. Fall 2009 (German.000 0 -80 % Reference (2008) Passenger transport Commercial transport Power and heat from CHP (coal) Power and heat from CHP (natural gas) Heat from CHP (natural gas) Power from CHP (natural gas) Power generation (coal with CCS) Direct heat generation (heating oil) Direct heat generation (natural gas) Target (2058) Bridge (2058) Source: Estimate by Wuppertal Institute.com/innovationnews (weekly media service) www. with downloads — also in Chinese. electric appliances. 8. since in many cases it is they who must choose between traditional technology and a more efficient but often. and industrial motors. if all the opportunities to save electricity were rigorously exploited — from stoplights to tumble driers — the power consumption of a city like Munich could be largely satisfied by renewable sources. The authors conclude that it would be possible to create a low-carbon neighborhood within a 30-year period. Both scenarios are based on reduced travel requirements. One of the most striking changes investigated by the study is the massive shift to electric cars. last name District heating Decentralized CHP Direct supply of heat Source: Wuppertal Institute. Special Edition” as the subject heading.000 5. English) Pictures of the Future.000 1. This applies equally to the construction of housing.siemens. people will probably still use hybrid or highly efficient diesel or gasoline cars.000 Annual CO2 per capita (in kg) 7. Russian.000 2. they will feed some of their power back into the grid. Yet the study emphasizes that this often involves merely a change in behavior. Portuguese. Spring 2007 (German. not a compromise in the quality of life.000 that the cost of refurbishing existing structures and building new ones in line with the Passive House standard would be offset by savings in energy that would have been consumed for heating.000 -89 % 4. fax or e-mail Department 750 1. Germany. the study presents a detailed plan of how to improve energy efficiency in an actual district on the periphery that contains both old and new housing. whose output of electricity differs according to the weather and the time of day.000 -79 % Building Heating by Source 46.Pictures of the Future | Study of a Carbon-Free Munich | Feedback tric appliances and lighting as well as renewable and low-carbon energy sources such as photovoltaic systems. Fall 2007 (German. investment in a carbon-free supply of heating would not only reduce emissions substantially but would also save the district an average of €4 to €6.0 22 % 1% Percentage of CO2 emissions in Munich (2008) resulting from heating of buildings: 46. That way. It is likely that by the middle of the century most car trips in the Munich area will be made in electric vehicles.5 million per annum. Spring 2009 (German.000 1. at the outset. The study therefore concludes that greater energy efficiency is chiefly interesting when it makes sound financial sense. English) Pictures of the Future. English) Additional information about Siemens’ innovations is available on the Internet at: www. Moreover. English) Pictures of the Future. And frequently this is because consumers fail to appreciate the potential savings in energy costs over a full product lifetime. The study assumes that the city will continue to obtain electricity from larger power plants in the region as well as further afield in Germany and abroad. Spanish. workplaces. Please check the box next to the publication you wish to order and the language you need. It must be remembered that private individuals and the business sector also have a role to play in boosting energy efficiency. and geothermal systems. The savings would be sufficient to fund the creation of a carbon-free district heating distribution system powered by geothermal energy. Tim Schröder Would you like to know more about Siemens and our latest developments? We will be glad to send you more information. However.com/innovation (Siemens’ R&D website) www. In other words.siemens.000 4. first name. more expensive alternative. Fall 2008 (German. and fax a copy of this page to +49 (0) 9131-9192-591 or mail it to Publicis Publishing — Susan Süß — Postfach 3240. When power is plentiful (and therefore cheap). At times of high demand (and peak rates).300 0 Reference (2008) Target (2058) Bridge (2058) 20 % 20 % 130 Reprinted (with updates) from Pictures of the Future | Spring 2009 Pictures of the Future | Special Edition on Green Technologies 131 . better town planning can help reduce the amount of traffic in Munich and therefore reduce its CO2 emissions. Spring 2008 (German.5 60 % 2 0 Reference (2008) Target/ Bridge (2058) CHP: Combined heat and power 3. Such power could be generated essentially by large offshore and onshore wind farms in northern Europe or by solar-thermal power plants in southern Europe or northern Africa and then transported to the cities of central Europe via low-loss HVDC transmission lines. 116). For longer trips. solar collectors. Brochure European Green City Index — Assessing the environmental impact of Europe’s major cities Brochure Sustainable Urban Infrastructure — London Edition. Plugging Cars into the Picture. At the same time.000 7.5 % TWh per annum 18 16 14 Total: 17. Some of this power could also be generated in low-carbon power plants equipped with technology for carbon capture and storage.000 6. 91050 Erlangen. by CHP plants for individual areas of the city or even micro CHP units for individual buildings.000 6.
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