German village of Feldheim is now off grid for consumption

Renewables International
With the installation of a 10-megawatt battery, the village of Feldheim near Berlin is now truly independent of electricity from outside.

Shuttershock
Shuttershock

With the installation of a 10-megawatt battery, the village of Feldheim near Berlin is now truly independent of electricity from outside.

Remember the story of Feldheim, the small town of some 140 that was allegedly off grid? As I pointed out at the time, it was very much connected to the grid, which still provided an outlet for the tremendous amount of excess electricity generated (especially wind power) – and was a source of electricity whenever local generation systems did not provide enough.
Now, an array of 3,360 lithium-ion battery modules – more than 20 per person – has been installed to at least allow the town to buffer excess electricity in order to bridge those shortages without resorting to electricity from the grid at all. The entire system came in with a price tag of 12.8 million euros, 5 million of which were provided as a state subsidy. LG provided the battery systems; Enercon, the control units.

 Of course, the town remains more or less a small group of people living within a gigantic windfarm of 74 megawatts. Most of the electricity (99 percent) will still be exported to the grid. In other words, the village is connected to the wind farm and also has solar arrays along with a biogas unit for heat and power – but the wind farm obviously remains connected to the grid.

In a way, the story is therefore less spectacular than it might seem. Feldheim is so small and exceptional that one wonders whether the hype – “today, we have written a new chapter in the history of storage,” a local politician claimed – is justified. On the other hand, such small steps forward do have a way of demonstrating a new option. My main concern is that this project once again focused on the optimization of local power consumption and production, not what the larger grid needs. It is therefore just another example of grid defection, which is gradually going to threaten the further existence of the grid – the great enabler of the energy transition up to now.
Source: Renewables International. Reproduced with permission.

2 Comments

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get up to 3 quotes from pre-vetted solar (and battery) installers.