Wind and solar energy are two central pillars in the effort to reduce emissions and provide climate-friendly energy in the near future. However, the increasing gross consumption of electricity generated from wind and solar energy means it is difficult to predict the amount of electricity which is to be fed into the grid. This is why the University of Duisburg-Essen, the German Biomass Research Centre DBFZ and the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research are working on making the most efficient use of bioenergy which could then act as a regulator. The researchers are jointly developing and testing innovative concepts aimed at increasing the flexibility of the use of the bioenergy available to the grid, even at short notice.

The project is divided into three components. First, the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research in Leipzig is developing concepts for flexible power generation from biomass. Then, the DBFZ in Leipzig will break down the findings to the individual plant level: Developing models for single biomass plants the researchers will analyse the effects of a flexible power generation on the power grids. Finally, the Chair of Energy Economics at the University of Duisburg-Essen is focusing on analysing the electricity system and the interactions between the uses of flexible sources of power generated from biomass for the German electricity system as a whole.

Launched in January 2019, the FLEXSIGNAL project is being funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) over a period of two years.