Photo: Torben Nielsen

New test centre to strengthen energy technology exports

Thursday 23 Jun 16

Contact

Jacob Østergaard
Professor, Head of Center
DTU Electrical Engineering
+4545 25 35 01

About PowerLabDK

The partners behind PowerLabDK are DTU and the utility company Bornholms Forsyning as well as a number of business partners: ABB, Balslev, Dansk Energi, Dong Energy A/S, Energinet DK, IBM, NKT Cables, Siemens, Vattenfall, and Vestas.

When the test and development centre PowerLabDK at DTU opens its doors today, 23 June, three new laboratories will be inaugurated, which will focus on the energy sector of the future involving digitalization and smart grids, among other things. Furthermore, the centre will be able to carry out large-scale experiments on the Danish island of Bornholm.

Last year, companies and organizations participated in 75 per cent of the activities at PowerLabDK’s laboratories, and the hope is that this collaboration will be increased with the new facilities. Among other things, the new laboratories are equipped with the world’s largest amplifier of its kind intended for performance testing of electrical components, such as charging stations for electric cars, and the most powerful digital real-time simulator for development and testing in Europe. It can be used for studying the complex interaction between individual components, for example between power produced by wind turbines and the overall energy system.

“If Danish companies are to maintain their position as market leaders in the development and sale of energy technology solutions, we need a well-functioning innovation chain. Our collaboration with university researchers has enabled us to spot new opportunities at an early stage, which we can turn into products that we can sell in the future,” says Niels B. Christiansen, President and CEO, Danfoss. 

“With DTU's new PowerLab, we will not only have the opportunity to collaborate with researchers and students, but—just as importantly—also with other companies, energy companies, and authorities. These new partnerships are a precondition for being able to supply solutions for the energy systems of the future, which are currently undergoing major changes that require interdisciplinary solutions developed by several different players,” he says.

"Our collaboration with university researchers has enabled us to spot new opportunities at an early stage, which we can turn into products that we can sell in the future."
Niels B. Christiansen, President and CEO, Danfoss

Large-scale testing
What is special about PowerLabDK is that it allows the testing of new technologies all the way to the end-users, which foreign buyers of Danish energy technology find very interesting.

One of PowerLabDK’s laboratories thus provides access to the entire power grid on Bornholm, making it possible, for example, to prepare energy consumption forecasts and subsequently measure if they proved to be true, as well as to involve consumers. Bornholm is currently performing tests at 2,000 consumers on the island, involving, among other things, their use of heat pumps to ensure that as much power as possible is consumed when there is plenty of it.

Leading Danish position to be maintained
”Danish energy technology is a real success. Energy technology solutions account for more than one tenth of the total Danish exports of goods, which means that Denmark is no. 1 in Europe in terms of energy technology export volume. Exports were slightly declining last year, and competition is increasing. Thus, there is every reason to make persistent efforts to maintain the Danish position in the market,” says Morten Bæk, Director General at the Danish Energy Agency.

Historically, Denmark’s strong position is related to our expertise in the utilization of wind power, which today accounts for 40 per cent of the Danish power supply.

“Going forward, there will also be plenty of opportunities for the Danish energy sector if we’re able to supply solutions to the challenges presented, for example, by the digitalization of the entire energy sector and a more cost-effective utilization of wind power. These are some of the areas in which a cooperation and test centre like PowerLabDK will be able to contribute solutions which Danish companies can subsequently use and sell,” says Morten Bæk.

Laboratory facilities

PowerLabDK consists of laboratory facilities at DTU in Lyngby, Ballerup, and Risø as well as on Bornholm. They comprise, among other things:

  • Electric cars focusing on system integration.
  • Testing and development of rotating machines and drives.
  • Development and testing of tomorrow’s converters for energy-efficient consumption units and renewable energy solutions.
  • The world’s largest amplifier of its kind intended for performance testing of electrical components.
  • The most powerful digital real-time simulator in Europe for studying the complex interaction between individual components and the overall energy system.
  • Bornholm’s energy system where 2,000 households currently participate in an experiment which has just received the Sustainable Energy Award—the most prestigious award of its kind in Europe.

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https://www.cee.elektro.dtu.dk/news/Nyhed?id=%7BF8300A91-7CE5-46A6-9278-7DF2BDDE8209%7D
18 OCTOBER 2019