Biblis Gas Fired Power Plant is a 300MW grid reserve power plant located in Hesse state, Germany. (Credit: © RWE 2023)
The LM2500XPRESS aero-derivative gas turbine technology was supplied by GE. (Credit: General Electric)
The grid stability plant was built on a former car parking area, south of the Biblis nuclear power plant site. (Credit: Rolf Kickuth/ Wikipedia)

The Biblis gas-fired grid reserve power plant is a 300MW-capacity power project located in the German state of Hesse.

The power plant is operated by German multinational energy company RWE. The project is developed to ensure grid stability during emergencies.

Biblis gas turbine power plant is equipped with 11 gas turbine units, which became operational for the first time in June 2022.

The plant commenced full operations in May 2023, becoming available for use by German transmission system operator Amprion.

Location Details

The Biblis gas turbine power plant was built on a former car parking area located south of the Biblis nuclear power plant.

The land belongs to the Biblis municipality in the Bergstrasse district of Southern Hesse region.

The plant is accessible by the grid operator Amprion and operated by RWE personnel working at the power plant in Dormagen.

Background details

RWE generated more than 500 billion kilowatt hours (KWh) of electricity in the Biblis nuclear power plant units A and B from 1974 to 2011.

The two units were shut down in June 2017 and a process of dismantling followed.

The German government aims to achieve 80% of renewable energy generation for the country’s electricity mix before the end of the decade.

As Germany transitions towards renewable energy, the system operators and energy suppliers face the difficult task of ensuring a secure and reliable supply of energy.

The use of ‘grid stability plants’ is aimed to address this challenge as renewable energy sources are being expanded.

In 2018, transmission system operators Amprion, TenneT and TransnetBW announced tender for grid stability plants with a capacity of 300MW each to prevent power outages in Southern Germany.

It aimed to establish a system that can reach the full-load reserve capacity within 30 minutes following the start signal, and can supply power with a very high availability.

In November 2020, Amprion contracted RWE Generation to build and operate the gas-fired grid reserve plant in Biblis.

The construction of the gas turbine plant began after a mandatory approval procedure according to section 4 of the German Federal Emission Control Act (BImSchG) and an environmental impact assessment.

Biblis Plant Infrastructure

The Biblis gas-fired power plant infrastructure comprises 11 GE LM2500 aeroderivative gas turbines, each with a capacity of 34MW.

The infrastructure also includes other auxiliary equipment, facilities for fuel supply and grid connection, and GE’s advanced gas-insulated-substation (GIS) equipment.

The power plant can deliver 300MW capacity even during scheduled maintenance, or in case of individual turbine failures.

Biblis plant is permitted to operate for a maximum of 1,500 hours per year.

Biblis power plant’s gas-fired turbines are connected to the grid via a 380kV high-voltage substation.

The T168 gas-insulated-substation (GIS) is designed to address the challenges of networks up to 550kV for applications such as power generation, transmission, and heavy industry.

GE LM2500XPRESS technology details

GE’s LM2500XPRESS power plant is developed using GE’s LM2500 aeroderivative gas turbine technology.

According to the company, LM2500XPRESS can be installed quickly and achieve full power in five minutes ensuring quick power supplies.

It is available in simple and combined cycle configurations for 50 and 60 Hz utility providers

GE LM2500XPRESS turbines in a simple cycle configuration can deliver 34MW and achieve up to 39.5% efficiency. The turbine can deliver up to 47MW with 54.4% efficiency in a combined cycle configuration.

The technology is 95% factory assembled into simplified modules for swift installation at the site.

Contractors Involved

In December 2020, GE secured the contract from RWE Generation for 11 units of LM2500XPRESS power plant technology for the Biblis gas-fired grid reserve plant.

The LM2500XPRESS units for the Biblis project were manufactured at GE Gas Power’s Manufacturing Excellence Center located in Veresegyhaz, Hungary.