220 MW BESS under construction

By Jack Burke06 June 2023

Germany’s RWE building one of the country’s largest battery storage facilities

Germany’s RWE has begun construction of one of Germany’s largest battery storage facilities at its power plant locations in Neurath and Hamm.

The facility will have a capacity of 220 MW and storage capacity of 235 MWh. A total of 690 lithium-ion battery blocks will be installed at the facility, involving an investment of approximately €140 million euros.

“As the proportion of renewables in the electricity mix increases, so does the need for flexible battery storage systems,” said Roger Miesen, CEO RWE Generation. “They balance out fluctuations in the electricity grid in seconds, which means they are the key to a reliable electricity supply. In terms of size and technology, the new large-scale battery storage facility in Neurath and Hamm is setting standards throughout Europe.”

Lars Kulik, member of the Board of RWE Power, said the storage facility is providing a major boost to structural transformation in North Rhine-Westphalia. By making practical use of the existing locations and grid connections, we are making the traditional power plant sites of Hamm and Neurath important partners for renewables.

The BESS is scheduled to supply balancing energy to stabilize the electricity grid from the second half of 2024. This will entail the plant taking excess power from the electricity grid and feeding it back into the system when required, in order to maintain the required grid frequency. The battery storage facility will also be deployed on the wholesale market. Electricity will be taken into the storage system if electricity prices are low, and conversely will be fed out when prices are high.

The planned battery storage facility can operate at its maximum capacity of 220 MW for over an hour. That is enough to charge the equivalent of about 4000 EVs, the company said. The facility will also be virtually networked with RWE power stations in Germany, which will make it possible to control whether the storage units work alone or in conjunction with other power stations to supply balancing energy.

In Neurath, batteries with a total capacity of 80 MW (84 MWh) will be installed on an area of around 7,500 m², which is the equivalent of about one football pitch. About €50 million of the planned total investment volume of €140 million will be invested in Neurath.

Batteries with a total capacity of 140 MW (151 MWh) will be installed at Hamm-Uentrop, covering an area of 14,000 m². Hamm will benefit from the investment of about €90 million of the planned total investment volume of €140 million.

As one of the leaders of the energy transition, RWE develops, builds and operates battery storage systems in Europe, Australia and the US. RWE currently operates a total installed battery storage capacity of approximately 300 MW (380 MWh) and is implementing battery storage projects of more than 900 MW (2,300 MWh) worldwide. Globally, RWE aims to build three gigawatts of batteries by 2030.

In Germany, RWE commissioned its mega battery in Lingen and Werne, with a total capacity of 117 MW, at the beginning of 2023. It also plans to virtually connect the battery storage system with its run-of-river power plants on the Moselle River. In March, the company acquired British developer JBM Solar, with an advanced development pipeline of 2.3 gigawatts of battery storage projects. Following the commissioning of the Indeland solar farm with its 4.8-MW battery storage facility, RWE is currently constructing further battery storage projects of this nature at the Garzweiler open-cast mine. And RWE recently won an Australian tender for a long-term battery storage facility (50 MW/400 MWh).

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