Editor's Note: The T&D World Live Conference and Exhibition will include a live session covering "Grid Booster Asset: Using Storage as a Transmission Asset." For more information and to register, visit https://events.tdworld.com.
TenneT and Fluence Energy have partnered on two Netzboosters (Grid Boosters) with a contract signing at Fluence’s technology center in Erlangen, Germany. The Grid Boosters will utilize Fluence Ultrastack, an advanced energy storage product designed for high asset availability in critical infrastructure. These battery-based storage systems are meant to lower costs by minimizing grid interventions and expansion needs. TenneT will integrate the Grid Boosters into the transmission grid at two strategically located nodes: Audorf Süd in Schleswig-Holstein and Ottenhofen in Bavaria. This integration enables TenneT to accommodate more renewable energy, so the existing grid can handle a higher transmission load.
“We will not be able to adapt the transmission grid to the new challenges of the new energy system with grid expansion alone,” said Tim Meyerjürgens, COO at TenneT. “The integration of electricity from renewables into the transmission grid will also depend to a large extent on operating resources, with which we can flexibly control the transmission grid. We are therefore pleased to have won Fluence as a strong and competent partner with many years of experience in the field of storage solutions. Grid Boosters are important and tangible solutions for a secure and affordable electricity supply.”
Meyerjügens has confirmed that the projects at Audorf Süd substation and Ottenhofen substation are already in the concrete implementation stage. He said, “With today’s signing of the contract, we have taken an important step towards realization. At the same time, we are in close contact with the approval authorities and have secured the land at an early stage. It is now important that we complete the approval procedures with the responsible authorities quickly and without red tape so that the Grid Boosters contribute to grid stability in 2025 as planned.”
As the energy transition accelerates, balancing energy production and consumption becomes increasingly challenging. Grid expansion is necessary to transport energy from decentralized locations over long distances. However, traditional grid expansion must be supplemented by innovative solutions like the Grid Booster concept to overcome transmission grid challenges.
Previously, the German high-voltage grid operated under the n-1 principle, which underutilized power lines to ensure system safety during outages. Grid Boosters, including TenneT’s pilot projects, will provide this function, increasing the transmission capacity of existing lines close to full capacity. This reduces the need for proactive grid interventions.
TenneT’s Grid Boosters are part of the pilot projects outlined in the 2019 grid development plan. Initially, two 100 MW/100 MWh energy storage systems will be tested at the Audorf Süd and Ottenhofen substations. The 2037/2045 grid development plan envisions up to 54.5 GW of large-scale energy storage systems in the German grid by 2045. Successful deployment of TenneT’s Grid Boosters will pave the way for more large-scale projects using storage as a transmission asset. These Grid Boosters offer potential for secure and flexible grid operation, contributing to an efficient and sustainable energy system.
Ultrastack, tailored for TenneT’s Grid Boosters, was developed, and tested at Fluence’s technology center in Erlangen.