Foto © FILL GmbH

Austrian DC Pilot Factory - Direct Current Networks for Industry: First Steps

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by Oxana Schmidt
Fig. Industrial DC Power Grid (the thermal aspect is excluded from the project)

The Austrian DC Pilot Factory is a pioneering NEFI project that aims to develop and demonstrate a secure, flexible and scalable direct current (DC) network for the industry. By integrating solar power generation and bidirectional electric vehicle charging infrastructure, the NEFI project sets new standards in sustainable energy supply and mobility.

The first step in implementing the demonstration plant took place at the plant construction company Fill in Gurten, Upper Austria. Fill was chosen as an ideal location to demonstrate a DC network in an industrial environment, Fill provides an ideal platform to test the practicality and efficiency of the DC power grid under real conditions.

The goal of the Austrian DC Pilot Factory project is to showcase the benefits of a DC power grid for the industry. Compared to conventional alternating current (AC) networks, DC offers numerous advantages, including higher energy efficiency and conductor material utilisation, simplified integration of renewable energy sources, and the potential for better utilisation of solar energy in conjunction with energy storage applications for peak load reduction and increased reliability. By implementing solar power generation, the Austrian DC Pilot Factory will help reduce the industry's carbon footprint while ensuring reliable and sustainable energy supply.

Another important aspect of the project is the bidirectional electric vehicle charging infrastructure. By integrating DC fast charging, efficient and fast vehicle charging is made possible. Moreover, the bidirectional technology allows vehicles to feed excess energy back into the manufacturing process, optimizing load distribution and self-consumption, thus contributing to grid stability.

Therefore, the Austrian DC Pilot Factory represents a significant step towards a sustainable industry and a future-proof energy infrastructure. The project not only demonstrates the technical feasibility of a DC power grid but also aims to raise awareness of the benefits and potential of this innovative solution in the industry. Through close collaboration between industrial companies, research institutions and energy experts, the Austrian DC Pilot Factory will pave the way for wider application of DC power grids in the industry, thus contributing to a more sustainable future.

For more information about the project, please visit: Austrian DC Pilot Factory | NEFI.