Combined: solar park, large-scale storage and rooftop PV system
SENS builds a hybrid PV project and combines solar park, rooftop PV system and storage with an annual electricity production of 15 GWh
The first rays of sunlight fall through the windows and the cockerel crows loudly, announcing a special day for the organic farm on the outskirts of Rickertsreute in the Lake Constance region. This special day was to see the groundbreaking ceremony for a major hybrid PV project. In addition to a solar park, SENS is building an energy storage facility and two PV rooftop systems for the investor Bechinger e-Energie GmbH. Apart from generating energy for thousands of people from the region, this project will also provide space for the local flora and fauna and thus promote biodiversity in the region. An idyll!
With four subsystems in a combined PV project
The groundbreaking ceremony on 15 June marked the start of the hybrid PV project, which consists of four sub-plants. The first solar park is now being built on a 12-hectare site with bifacial modules. This type of module has a higher output than conventional solar modules, in that not only the direct incidence of light on the front of the module is converted into electricity, but also direct and reflective radiation on the back. With a total output of over 12 MWp the solar park in Rickertsreute thus achieves an enormous annual level of electricity generation. The ground-mounted plant will begin to feed electricity into the local grid as early as October of this year.
In addition, SENS is also entrusted with the planning and construction of two PV rooftop systems on the barns of the organic farm. The monofacial modules planned there will provide a total output of approximately 307 kWp on these rooftops. These two systems will supply the region with green electricity as early as the autumn.
In addition to the photovoltaic systems, SENS is integrating an energy storage system that will ensure a stable and cost-efficient energy supply in the region. With an inverter capacity of 4.1 MW and an energy storage capacity of over 10 MWh, the storage system will in future be able to temporarily store excess electricity production for several hours. Linked to the PV ground-mounted system, this will create one of the largest combinations of large-scale energy storage and solar generation in the entire state of Baden-Württemberg to date. The storage system is scheduled to go into operation by February 2023, thus completing this flagship project in the region.
To round off the project SENS, in coordination with the municipality, the Zweckverband Breitband-Bodenseekreis (Broadband Association of the Lake Constance District) and the Stadtwerke am See (Lakeside Public Utilities), will be responsible for the construction of the medium-voltage cable connection. This will be about 2.5 kilometres long and will distribute the electrical energy between the villages.
Organic farm in Rickertsreute: this is where the hybrid PV project will be built in the coming months
Sustainable idyll on Lake Constance
In the future, this PV system combination will produce approximately 15 GWh of sustainable electricity annually from all three solar systems. It is estimated that this hybrid project will save in the region of 7,000 tonnes of CO2 per year and could also make a significant contribution to grid stability in the region in the future.
In addition to generating green energy, the project is also sustainable all-round in terms of biodiversity in the region, and will provide a green idyll in Rickertsreute. Flowers, grasses and herbs that would not have a chance to flourish if the area were under normal cultivation will find a habitat on the solar park. In addition, sheep will graze on the greenery between and under the module tables. The herd will accordingly find plenty to eat on soil which is free from chemicals. Green energy, biodiversity and grassland all in one - this makes the project a genuine example of added value for the region.
System combination of solar park with sheep grazing, large-scale storage, rooftop PV systems and medium-voltage cable route
"The aspect of sustainability and biodiversity has long been an essential part of our activities here at the organic farm," Hubert-Alexander Bechinger, Managing Director of Bechinger e-Energie GmbH and owner of the Rickertsreute organic farm, tells us. "Besides our bee-flowering meadows and mixed forests, the next logical step was quite clear: we have to make our energy consumption more sustainable. So why not make regenerative energy available to more people from the region? As an organic farmer and civil engineer, I have the necessary land to initiate such projects. That is a great privilege for me," Bechinger makes his intention clear.
Green energy for the region in just a few months
"This project is not only a special venture for the region around Lake Constance, but also for SENS. We can demonstrate here our core competence as a partner in the implementation of complex projects with several interconnected technologies and realise a regionally unique project through the combination of PV plants and storage system," explains Fabian Herr, COO of SENS. Now, together with the entire team, we will ensure that the Lake Constance district benefits from our Good Energy as quickly as possible," concludes Fabian Herr, looking ahead to the coming months.
The groundbreaking ceremony at the organic farm in Rickertsreute
From left to right: Wolfgang Heine (Managing Director of the Upper Swabia-Lake Constance Regional Association), Christian Böhm (Project Partner Laoco), Local Councillor Markus Müller, Mayor Frank Amann, Stefan Böhm (Sieber Consulting), Developer and Investor Hubert Bechinger, Georg Waschheim (VR-Bank), Thomas Vöhringer (SENS Project Manager) and Tim Müller (Tricera Energie)
Pictures: Uwe Hennemeier and Thomas Köllhofer
Graphic: Jessica Sommer