The technology group Wärtsilä today launches its next-generation grid balancing technology, designed to provide flexible grid capacity even in adverse weather conditions and enable renewables to perform as the lowest-cost, most resilient power source for grids worldwide.
The solution is based on three fully integrated key components: the Wärtsilä 31SG Balancer engine, prefabricated modules for cost-efficient plant construction, and Wärtsilä Lifecycle services. The Wärtsilä 31SG Balancer offers 12400kW (8% more power) at a heat rate of 6800 Btu/kWh /+50% efficiency, lowering the cost and risk of the renewable transition through flexible, resilient capacity. The new engine technology is designed to provide power producers with fast-ramping balancing power, which can be scaled up as the share of renewables in power systems increases. The engine can start and ramp up rapidly to support intermittent renewable generation so that the lowest cost cleanest energy technology can become the dominant power source.
The engine in the Wärtsilä 31SG Balancer solution has been designed especially for U.S. environmental conditions, including adverse weather, to provide the optimal flexible technology and ensure continued running at times of extreme cold, or heat, from -40°C - +45°C /-40°F - +113°F.
“Extreme weather is intensifying – and ‘weatherization’ is now a requirement in states such as Texas. Through the freezing winter blackouts in Texas last winter and California’s heatwave this summer, renewable plants supported by our engines kept running. Our fast-ramping, agile engines are designed for the climate-changed world utilities now operate in, enabling the greater deployment of renewables in grids around the world,” said Risto Paldanius, Vice President, Americas, Wärtsilä Energy.
The Wärtsilä 31SG Balancer responds to market needs with a cost-efficient plant construction design, based on prefabricated, high-quality power plant modules. It reduces time-to-electricity with 30% less site work than traditional construction methods.
The key features of the Wärtsilä 31SG Balancer:
“The energy transition is picking up speed rapidly around the world, especially in the U.S. where, by 2029, solar and wind could be the cheapest in the world at less than 5 USD per megawatt-hour. Our latest grid balancing engine is designed to help utilities transform the energy mix of their power plant portfolios, so that the lowest cost technologies, renewables, provide most of the power, most of the time,” Risto Paldanius continued.
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Image: The Wärtsilä 31SG Balancer comes with a cost-efficient plant construction design, based on prefabricated, high-quality power plant modules, reducing time-to-electricity with 30% © Wärtsilä Corporation
Wärtsilä Energy in brief
Wärtsilä Energy leads the transition towards a 100% renewable energy future. We help our customers in decarbonisation by developing market-leading technologies. These cover future-fuel enabled balancing power plants, hybrid solutions, energy storage and optimisation technology, including the GEMS energy management platform. Wärtsilä Energy’s lifecycle services are designed to increase efficiency, promote reliability and guarantee operational performance. Our track record comprises 76 GW of power plant capacity and 110 energy storage systems delivered to 180 countries around the world.
Wärtsilä in brief
Wärtsilä is a global leader in innovative technologies and lifecycle solutions for the marine and energy markets. We emphasise innovation in sustainable technology and services to help our customers continuously improve their environmental and economic performance. Our dedicated and passionate team of 17,000 professionals in more than 200 locations in 68 countries shape the decarbonisation transformation of our industries across the globe. In 2021, Wärtsilä’s net sales totalled EUR 4.8 billion. Wärtsilä is listed on Nasdaq Helsinki.