Insight: Hybridization technology
A run-of-river hydropower plant on the Rhine and owned by Électricité de France, Vogelgrun is testing hybridization technology, where eight partners are contributing.
Vogelgrun has four low head, double-regulated Kaplan turbines. In early 2021, one unit was hybridized with a battery energy storage system (BESS). Since the beginning of August 2021, this unit is operating 24/7 in hybrid mode (35 MW Kaplan unit + 0.6 MW BESS) to provide 4 MW FCR (frequency containment reserve; primary control). More information on hydro-battery storage hybrid energy systems.
The addition of the battery system delivers a rapid power response to complement the hydraulic unit. A master control, running on a HIPASE* platform, calculates the individual set-points to provide FCR. Furthermore, a smart power plant supervisor is being developed that will minimize wear and tear. Two units were equipped with sensors. The second unit, providing FCR without a battery, serves as a benchmark to optimize and quantify the benefits of the hybridization.