Frontiers in Energy

, Volume 11, Issue 2, pp 119–125 | Cite as

Impact of renewable energies on the operation and economic situation of coal fired power stations: Actual situation of coal fired power stations in Germany

  • Hans-Joachim Krautz
  • Alexander Lisk
  • Joachim Posselt
  • Christian Katzer
Research Article


Due to the fluctuating character of the renewable energy sources the demand of conventional power plants for flexibility is increasing. In the recent years, in Germany there has been a fast rise of production capacity of renewable energies, especially from wind turbines, photovoltaic installations, and biomass plants. The installed nominal power of wind turbines is actually (December 2016) 42 GW and of photovoltaic installations 40 GW. The renewable electric energy production in Germany is about 190 TWh/a, which represents a share of 33% of the yearly demand. The increased need for flexibility affects both the power gradients as well as the minimum load of conventional power plants. Due to this flexibility behaviour, conventional power plants are faced with problems concerning the durability of power plant components, corrosion, more maintenance effort and consequently the overall life expectancy. Another consequence of the increasing share of renewable energies is the decreasing full load operating hours, especially of coal fired and gas power plants. Along with decreasing revenues from the energy exchange market, coal fired power plants are faced with new economically challenges.


flexible load operation minimal load power gradients power plant maintenance corrosion life expectancy 


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Copyright information

© Higher Education Press and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hans-Joachim Krautz
    • 1
  • Alexander Lisk
    • 1
  • Joachim Posselt
    • 1
  • Christian Katzer
    • 1
  1. 1.Department for Power Plant TechnologyBrandenburg University of Technology Cottbus–SenftenbergCottbusGermany

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