The Renewable Energy Hamburg Cluster (EEHH) presented the 7th German Renewables Award 2018 Wednesday (September 26, 2018) during a gala at Hamburg’s Intercity Hotel Dammtor. The winning contributions had demonstrated impressive work on the energy transition – from rapid and efficient laying of power cabling, intelligent use of industrial waste heat, reduced performance losses and enhanced reactive power control in wind farms to a vivid TV report on the dismantling of a nuclear power plant. An eight-member panel had selected the winners.
Significance of award
Commenting on the prize-winners, Jan Rispens, Managing Director of EEHH, said: “The companies and individuals receiving their awards here today are on the one hand hugely important to the development and ongoing expansion of wind energy, yet on the other demonstrate an increasing tendency towards approaching energy transition from a system-based perspective. The scope of efforts ranges from reactive power optimisation in wind farms and minimally invasive ground cable laying to the use of industrial waste heat for district heating supply.” He added: “Last but not least, the panel recognised a scientist to have laid the foundations for wind energy utilisation in Germany with his pioneering ground work. We’re glad to see such wide-ranging work and high quality in the competitive environment.”
Improvements and innovations
A syndicate headed by AGS Verfahrenstechnik GmbH in co-operation with municipal utilities in Stade won the German Renewables Award 2018 in the “Product Innovation of the Year” category. They had shown how cabling can be laid quickly and efficiently for transmission grids. AGS uses a procedure that combines water-filled ductwork with active cooling rendering costly earth works unnecessary. A winning project by Aurubis AG won the “Project of the Year” category. The German Renewables Awards panel believed it “to have made a decisive contribution to thermal energy transition in the Hamburg region”. The Hamburg-based copper producer converted its copper manufacturer operations to use 60 MW of waste heat to supply the eastern part of the HafenCity area from late 2018. The changes allow for over 20,000 tonnes in annual CO2 savings.
Thesis and “Life’s Work” categories
A master’s thesis by Laura Haffner, a student at the Helmut Schmidt University of the Federal Armed Forces Hamburg, saw her win the German Renewables Award in the “Student Thesis of the Year (Wind Energy)” category. Striking an appropriate balance for reactive and active power in wind farms is one of the main challenges facing contemporary wind farm and grid operators. The methodology developed by Haffner minimises performance losses in the wind farm and offers effective reactive power control for the power grid. The award in the “Life’s Work of the Year (Wind Energy)” category went to Prof. Dr. Robert Gasch for his work on wind turbines and for talks which have left their mark on an entire generation of engineers. Gasch taught at TU Berlin for 25 years and from 1986 was instrumental in establishing the Polytechnical Institute in Xian, China. In 2009, he received the “Friendship Award for Foreign Experts” from the People’s Republic of China for his contributions.
New journalistic prize
Marco Heuer of NDR/Lower Saxony regional broadcasting centre won the first Journalism Award presented by EEHH. NDR broadcast his TV report: “How does it work? Dismantling a nuclear power plant in April 2018. The second and third places went to an article “Getting involved in energy transition in this year’s “enorm weconomy” by Daniela Becker, and to report headed “Revolution in the energy market” published this summer by Stefan Schultz in “Spiegel Online”. A total of nine entries had been received in the “Journalism Award” category.
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