Traffic lights out of action, no telephone network, dark streets. Power outages bring public life to a standstill at a stroke. In early October, Germany experienced a sudden frequency drop in its utility grid. A large-scale power outage was prevented only by immediately providing operating reserve – with some of the power coming from the battery-storage power plants of the Upside Group in Bennewitz and Langenreichenbach in Saxony, Germany. There, powerful Sunny Central Storage battery inverters and the SMA Hybrid Controller from SMA Solar Technology AG (SMA) ensure optimum charging and discharging of the batteries. A third storage power plant producing 16 MW has now commenced operation in Groitzsch, Germany.

“The Bennewitz, Langenreichenbach and Groitzsch battery storage systems provide operating reserve for frequency stabilization and help prevent large-scale power outages,” said Wiebke Krüger, Head of Project Management & Operations at SMA Sunbelt Energy GmbH. “All three storage power plants are equipped with Sunny Central Storage battery inverters and an SMA Hybrid Controller. Together, they hold 50 MW of power, which is available for stabilizing the utility grid. We are pleased to continue the joint success story with our partners at the Upside Group by completing further battery-storage system projects within a short time.”

Battery-storage systems secure a reliable energy supply
“All our battery-storage systems are in operation 24/7 and already provide support to the European grid frequency several hundred thousand times per year,” said Marc Reimer, General Manager of Upside Invest GmbH & Co. KG. “In view of the growing significance of e-mobility and the decision to rapidly phase out coal in particular, this task is becoming increasingly important and is now a prerequisite for a reliable energy supply.”

Powerful Sunny Central Storage control the provision of electric current within seconds
At the Groitzsch battery storage system, nine powerful Sunny Central Storage battery inverters and one SMA hybrid controller ensure that alternating current from the utility grid is converted into direct current that can be stored and then control its rapid provision. In addition, SMA is taking care of O&M services for the project on behalf of the Upside Group and – with more than 125 MWh of battery-storage power plants now under its management – is now one of the world’s leading O&M providers for battery-storage power plants.

Storage power plants are ideal partners for a stable grid frequency
The battery-storage power plant in Groitzsch holds 16 MW of power and is one of the largest storage power plants in Germany. It provides around-the-clock help with stabilizing the grid frequency, which should be a steady 50 Hz. However, due to volatility in generation and consumption, the frequency fluctuates and needs to be readjusted constantly. Battery-storage power plants are ideal for meeting this requirement.