Storing surplus electricity in the natural gas network

Surplus electricity can be used in power-to-gas facilities in order to produce hydrogen by means of electrolysis. The part of the gas that is not fed directly into the natural gas network or cannot be used can be channelled downstream for methanation as a storage option. Scientists at the DBI - Gastechnologisches Institut gGmbH in Freiberg, Saxony, are developing a biological methanation process in cooperation with other partners in the BioRePow research project. This will make it possible to produce bio-methane based on a fermentation strategy. To this end, the Freiberg researchers have developed a special tube reactor that dispenses with energy-intensive components like agitators, circulation or gas separation.

In addition to DBI, the Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental, Safety, and Energy Technology UMSICHT and the Engler-Bunte-Institut (EBI) from Karlsruhe are working on the new tube reactor to produce bio-methane. The German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy has been promoting the project within the programme of the Industrial Collective Research (Industrielle Gemeinschaftsforschung - AiF).

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Opinion panel

“Government policies need to promote renewable energy sources in a way that allows hydropower to maximize its contribution to supply reliability.”

Dr. Roland Münch, Chairman of the Board, Voith Hydro 

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