Building upon more than eight decades of extensive experience in the concept-level design, planning, construction and operation of complex power engineering systems, energy company STEAG GmbH, Essen/Germany, is now offering three graded energy studies for industrial and commercial companies (Figure 1). These ready-made packages enable medium-sized enterprises to get off to a quick start with their decarbonization process. STEAG’s particular strength here lies in its broad-based expertise across the entire energy value chain: From photovoltaic systems to storage technology, solutions for waste heat utilization and heat recovery, ventilation, air filtration and compressed air technology, as well as digital services – STEAG integrates all this expertise in the energy studies to identify how the customer can decarbonize in their pursuit of carbon neutrality.
Be it energy optimization of an automotive supplier’s power and heat generation, harnessing waste heat on an industrial scale, preparing consumption analyses or providing customized engineering services – STEAG can draw on the wealth of its own resources when it comes to creating individual energy concepts: “Our versatility is our greatest asset,” says Ulrich Sigel who, together with Anke Langner, heads the Energy Solutions business unit.
The preparation of an energy study begins with a fundamental analysis of the current situation. Based on this, STEAG then works out options for action for the customer. If desired, STEAG also provides support in implementing the proposed measures.
STEAG delivers a broad, in-depth service when drawing up an energy concept: “We analyze the baseline situation, define goals in consultation with our customers and then identify ways these goals can be accomplished,” Sigel explains, outlining STEAG’s approach. For a project to succeed on a long-term basis, he says, there is one thing in particular that is important: “The first step is understanding what our customers need and where they’re starting from and then identifying perspectives for making processes better, more efficient and more sustainable on a lasting basis. And that’s precisely why we’ve put together three packages for our medium-sized customers.” Depending on the challenges they face, customers can choose between costs ranging from 13,500 € for the Basic package to 36,250 € for the Expert package. Even in the Basic package, potential government funding opportunities can be identified if required.
Especially for medium-sized industrial enterprises, the energy concept studies offer clear recommendations for action geared towards achieving carbon neutrality. For Karlsberg Brewery in the Saarland region, e. g., the study showed how the existing steam turbine for on-site power generation could be replaced by a modern power and heat supply system. Following completion of the project, the combined generation of power and heat enabled a significant cut in CO2 emissions by around 5,200 t/a.
It is projects like this that explain why customers not only seek advice and support from STEAG in developing ideas and concepts for improving their systems technology and operating processes, but also subsequently entrust the Essen-based energy specialists with implementing the plans: “We’re accomplished in theory and practice, we know what we’re talking about, and not having to buy in the necessary expertise for implementation gives us the competitive edge. Our customers have one contact person and don’t have to deal with coordinating the individual steps themselves,” says Langner, highlighting the advantages of such an approach. This ultimately eases the stress on the customer, who also benefits from STEAG’s extensive experience in managing complex infrastructure projects, she continues.
What this actually looks like in practice is impressively demonstrated by a number of recent projects. A methanol synthesis facility, e. g., is to be built on the site of a municipal waste-to-energy plant in Zella-Mehlis/Thuringia and will be fed with energy from that plant. “This will enable us to provide the local public transport system and the fleet of municipal waste disposal vehicles with green fuel directly on the spot, so making an important contribution to reducing emissions and achieving climate neutrality,” Sigel explains, underlining the scale of the project.
The Stuttgart-based STEAG subsidiary OPTENDA also offers companies help with decarbonization. The “CO2 Monitor”, a lean and intuitive software solution for recording and balancing emissions, identifies possible approaches to reducing CO2 emissions in the future or avoiding them altogether.
What all these projects have in common is that they were developed from the fundamental stance that is typical of STEAG of seeing the given task from the perspective of the customer, who has a specific problem to solve, or who needs to optimize, improve efficiency or tap unused synergy potential. Sigel values the quality of the STEAG team: “With our skills and abilities, we can look at the task set by our customer from all angles, analyze it and then in effect immediately offer a concrete solution for implementation from our toolbox, enabling the customer to hit the ground running.” (STEAG/Si.)