PowerCoordinationEurope 2018 in Brussels

21.09.2018

Last year, TSCNET Services, the Munich-based Regional Security Coordinator (RSC), had the great privilege of hosting the first ElSeC conference on Electricity Security Coordination. Now the torch was passed on to the colleagues of Coreso. The Belgian RSC, in close coordination with the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E) and in association with the Florence School of Regulation, is organising the regional electricity summit under the new banner “PowerCoordinationEurope”.

With Coreso as host, this year’s conference participants will meet on 16 October in the immediate vicinity of European decision-making. ElSeC 2018 will take place in the Albert Hall in Brussels, just a stone’s throw away from the European Headquarters. “PowerCoordinationEurope” will be attended by high-level representatives from RSCs, transmission system operators (TSOs) and energy companies as well as by policy makers, various experts and thought leaders. The main topics to be discussed include the advancement of regional coordination, network code implementation, interoperability of RSCs and the current status of the European Commission’s Clean Energy Package.

It goes without saying that all five European RSCs play a prominent role in the event. TSCNET Services will be represented by its two managing directors, Maik Neubauer and Uwe Zimmermann. The latter will take part in the panel discussion on regional specificities of the RSC business, and Mr Neubauer will discuss the new opportunities for power coordination arising from digital solutions in information and communication technology. We look forward to good talks in Brussels .

PowerCoordinationEurope, the conference on electricity security coordination, takes place on 16 October 2018 in Brussels

Linkup
> Visit PowerCoordinationEurope webpage (html)

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Luxembourgian TSO welcomed as new client

16.10.2017

TSCNET Services has signed a service-level agreement (SLA) with Creos Luxembourg (www.creos-net.lu), the national electricity and gas grid operator. Creos manages 585km of power transmission lines within the country. The service package consists mainly of security sssessment services for forecasting electricity flows and potential congestions within Luxembourg and at the main connection line to neighbouring electricity networks.

A recent interconnection project at Creos using the existing 220kV grid infrastructure and a new 400MW phase shifting transformer (PST) to interconnect the Belgian grid (Elia) with the Luxembourgish grid (Creos) and thus interconnecting the German and the Belgian control block makes cross-border coordination even more necessary. TSCNET Services supports Creos in maintaining the operational security of the electricity system.

“Treat a new client like the most important one” – that’s what many business consultants recommend. For TSCNET Services, this is not the point. For us, it is about guiding a new client successfully through the same security-relevant processes as any other client. With Creos, everything went flawlessly! On the 11th of October, the new client participated in the joint security assessment processes for the first time.

The other TSCNET customers will also profit from the agreement: The representation of the Luxembourgian transmission grid in the increasingly harmonised European data models will be more precise and reliable.

> Open TSCNET Services press release (pdf, 217kb)

Image on the right: Creos Luxembourg S. A.

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Impressions from the successful Creos go-live training and preparatory meetings

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Amprion prepares ALEGrO cabling

06.04.2017

The Aachen Liège Electricity Grid Overlay (ALEGrO) will play a significant part in the European transmission infrastructure and market integration. The first interconnector between Germany and Belgium is an EC project of common interest and realised jointly by the Belgian transmission system operator (TSO) Elia and TSC member Amprion, one of the four German TSOs.

Underground cabling will be used for the entire route of about 49km in Belgium and 41km in Germany. The binational high voltage link ALEGrO will have a total transport capacity of up to 1,000MW, hence providing urgently needed grid reserves for cross-border electricity flows and also supply security for the German metropolitan area of Cologne.

On the German side of the border, Amprion pursues the necessary preparatory works – like ordnance clearance and archaeological investigations – with great energy. Subsequently, the German TSO will apply for plan approval at the compentent authority in the course of the second quarter of 2017. According to current planning, ALEGrO is scheduled for operation in 2020.

> See Amprion press release, in German (html)

Picture: Screenshot from video “Das ALEGrO-Projekt” (Elia, YouTube)

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Converter stations for ALEGrO

29.11.2016

The Aachen Liège Electricity Grid Overlay (ALEGrO) is one of Europe’s major infrastructure projects. Graded as project of common interest by the European Commission, it will be the first interconnector between Germany and Belgium and a significant part of the European electricity highway system. With a total length of 90km, ALEGrO will be realised by means of underground cables in close coperation between TSC member Amprion, one of the four German transmission system operators (TSOs), and the Belgian TSO Elia.

On 27 November 2016, the two TSOs have awarded the German engineering conglomerate Siemens with a €273m contract for the design, supply, installation, commissioning and five-year maintenance of the two high-voltage direct-current (HVDC) converter stations at each end of the ALEGrO undercround cable. For the cable itself, Amprion and Elia already signed a €125m contract with Silec Cable on 29 September. The transnational high voltage link ALEGrO with a maximum transport capacity of up to 1,000MW and a high degree of energy flow controllability will be an invaluable benefit to the integration of the European energy markets. “We can control the power flow of the cable with a high degree of accuracy and adjust the volume of electricity and flow direction”, comments Klaus Kleinekorte, Managing Director of Amprion. The ALEGrO interconnector with all its components is scheduled for operation in 2020.

> See Amprion press release, in German (html)

> Open Elia press release (pdf, 196kb)

Picture: Amprion

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Heading towards integrated FFR markets

24.10.2016

The EXPLORE study (European X-border Project for LOng term Real-time balancing Electricity market design) has been initiated by the five TSC members APG, the Austrian transmission system operator (TSO), the Dutch-German TSO TenneT, and the German TSOs 50Hertz, Amprion, and TransnetBW in cooperation with the Belgian TSO Elia in early 2015. Since then, the partner TSOs have been evaluating possibilities of integrated markets for frequency restoration reserve (FRR) in order to develope a target model for the transnational exchange of FRRs.

The EXPLORE study involves a complete market model, its consistency and possible starting points for harmonisation efforts. Interlinking aspects between intraday and balancing markets and also between design features of the FRR market itself are taken into account extensively.

After the presentation of first results during a workshop in June 2016, the TSOs have published a comprehensive report on their findings on 21 October. At the behest of the respective national regulatory authorities, stakeholders are invited to respond to the report until 21 November. The participating TSOs dearly appreciate the stakeholder’s feedback and assure that timely feedback will not only be thoroughly considered by the TSOs but will also be shared with all regulatory authorities of the EXPLORE countries.

> See TenneT press release (html)

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Cross border intraday market with six countries

06.10.2016

5 October 2016 saw the successful launch of the new Belgian-French and Belgian-Dutch intraday solution for cross border trades. Now the the Dutch and Belgian intraday markets are connected to the respective markets of Austria, Germany, France and Switzerland.

In cooperation with the Belgian and French transmission system operators (TSOs) Elia and RTE, TSC member TenneT, the Dutch-German TSO, offers intraday cross-border capacity for the Belgian-French and Belgian-Dutch bidding zones. This is done via the new M7 intraday trading platform which replaces EuroLight, the platform hitherto used for intraday trading in Belgium and the Netherlands.

> See TenneT press release (html)

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Interconnecting Belgium and Germany

30.09.2016

The Aachen Liège Electricity Grid Overlay (ALEGrO) will be the first interconnector between Germany and Belgium. TSC member Amprion, one of the four German transmission system operators (TSOs), and the Belgian TSO Elia cooperate closely on the realisation of this major infrastructure project which has been graded as project of common interest by the European Commission.

The two TSOs have signed a €125m contract on the delivery and installation of a 320kV bipole high voltage DC extruded underground cable with Silec Cable, a subsidiary of General Cable, the world’s largest wire and cable manufacturer. ALEGrO will have a capacity of 1,000 megawatts and a total length of about 100km. The interconnector will allow a high degree of electricity flow controllability, increase supply security for both partner countries and support the integration of renewable energy. Klaus Kleinekorte, Managing Director of Amprion, concludes that “ALEGrO will make the European electricity network even more secure and powerful”.

> See Amprion press release, in German and, optional, English (html)

Picture: Amprion

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Grid visions for sustainability

14.09.2016

The Renewables Grid Initiative (RGI) invites representatives from politics, companies and non-profit organisations to participate in its 6th European Grid Conference to be held on 29 September 2016 at the Musical Instrument Museum (MIM) in Brussels, Belgium. The leading topic of this year’s RGI-event is “Sustainability and the Power Grid”.

The contributors of the 2016 European Grid Conference will focus on different aspects of grid development, like the social dimensions of grid investments or public economical benefits from grid expansion measures. Last but not least, environmental questions are a natural topic of the RGI-conference. Among the prominent speakers of the meeting are Maroš Šefčovič, Vice-President of the European Commission in charge of the Energy Union, and Joseph P. Kennedy II., the founder and president of the American non-profit company “Citizens Energy”. With the participation of Kennedy, RGI expands its prospects once more beyond European borders.

The TSC members TenneT, the Dutch-German transmission system operator (TSO), and 50Hertz, one of the other three German TSOs, are supporting the event. The two companies also provide high-profile speakers for the event: 50Hertz’s Chief Financial Officer Marco Nix and TenneT’s Chief Executive Officer J. M. Kroon will contribute to the conference section on innovative business practices. Concluding remarks are to be drawn by Dominique Ristori, Director General for Energy within the European Commission, and Konstantin Staschus, Secretary-General of the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E).

> See the RGI conference page (html)

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Belgium joins cross border trading

04.08.2016

Since late July 2016, balancing service providers from Austria, Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, and Switzerland are forming the largest transnational frequency containment reserve cooperation in Europe. Swiss transmission system operator (TSO) and TSC member Swissgrid was satisfied to announce that also the Belgian TSO Elia has joined the collaboration now and takes part in cross border frequency containment reserve auctions.

The international cooperation of national TSOs – including the Austrian, Dutch and German TSC members APG, TenneT, 50Hertz, Amprion, and TransnetBW – results in a more liquid and efficient market and provides new sales options to the participants. Over and above, cross border auctions reduce the risk of supply shortage and ensure grid stability as well as system security. The joint market activities of the partaking TSOs meet the demands of present and future standards set by the European Network Code and the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E). The French and the Danish TSOs are invited to the common auctions and expected to join in a later stage.

> See Swissgrid press release (html)
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CALLIA to integrate renewables

05.07.2016

On 1 July 2016, the EU-financed CALLIA project was officially launched under the full title “Open electricity markets with direct interaction between distribution grids for integration of renewable energies”. As this title already suggests, the project’s main goal is to optimise the transnational integration of electricity deriving from renewable sources into the European power grid. CALLIA is a subsection of the European research program “ERA-Net Smart Grids Plus” and funded with €4.9m.

Up to now, European cross-border electricity exchange is limited to the high voltage grid. With this limitation Europe will hardly achieve its own ambitious goals regarding climate protection via the increase of the renewables’ share in the energy mix. The CALLIA partners will investigate possibilities of direct energy transfer between national electricity grids. Amongst other things a closer cooperation of transmission system operators (TSO’s) and an appropriate infrastructure are necessary to allow the local exchange of sustainable energy at distribution grid level.

The project consortium consists of twelve partners including TSOs, research institutes and commercial enterprises from Austria, Belgium, Germany and Turkey. The “International Solar Energy Research Center” (ISC) Konstanz takes the role of the project coordinator. TSC member TransnetBW, one of the four German TSOs, plays an important part within CALLIA, deploying all its long-time experience in terms of grid-supporting products, strategies and balancing. TransnetBW is also involved in the evaluation of roles and tasks for TSO’s in order to utilise different voltage levels.

> See TransnetBW press release (html)
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