Brussels-based Next Kraftwerke Belgium has successfully provided primary control reserve (R1) to transmission system operator Elia by networking the power generation of many small renewable generators. With its Virtual Power Plant (VPP), Next Kraftwerke brings a new concept to Belgium and is the first company in Belgium to provide primary reserve control on lower voltage levels.
“Our Virtual Power Plant provides the same grid stabilizing services that were previously delivered by large-scale nuclear and gas plants. We help to safely integrate the large volumes of solar and wind energy that are expected to come online in the coming years, and make an important step towards independence from large-scale central units,” says Next Kraftwerke Belgium’s co-founder and CEO Jan De Decker.
In order to provide control reserve, Next Kraftwerke combines small and medium-sized electricity producers with flexible electricity consumers in a single European-wide Virtual Power Plant. Examples include biogas or combined heat and power (CHP) plants owned by local farmers on the production side, and flexible pumps, ventilators and compressors on the consumption side. This pool of diverse units is monitored in real-time and is automatically controlled by algorithms run in Next Kraftwerke’s control center. Next Kraftwerke Belgium was founded in 2014 in Brussels and is a subsidiary of Next Kraftwerke GmbH in Germany. Read more on www.next-kraftwerke.be