Solar park near Nochten opencast mine

Solar park Nochten (D)
photo: Naturstrom AG

For NaturEnergy KGaA, MKG GÖBEL has built a solar park with an output of 18 megawatts in eastern Saxonia. An unusual feature: the plant generates electricity mainly in the morning hours to compensate for grid peaks at lunchtime.

Old and new are very close here: the Nochten solar park is located in the Saxon municipality of Boxberg, just over a kilometre from the Nochten open-cast lignite mining area in northern Oberlausitz. More than 40,000 modules were used for the park, generating an output of 18 MWp. For the substructure, the GMS® MAX mounting system from MKG GÖBEL was used, which allows the area to be densely packed.

Instead of aiming for maximum yield with a southern orientation, the majority of the module tables are rotated 34 degrees to the east and are producing electricity in the morning hours to better serve the grid. This helps to reduce midday peaks from solar power production.

“With an increasing share of renewable energies in the grid, it’s becoming more and more important to generate green electricity more in line with demand,” Thomas E. Banning, Managing Director of NaturEnergy, explains the unusual module orientation. “A shift in the timing of the feed-in, as here in Nochten, helps to avoid overloading the existing grid capacities at midday and to make better use of them overall. In addition, for a green power supplier, solar power is worth more if it is produced during off-peak hours. Since Nochten is located quite far to the east of Germany and the sun rises relatively early there, the orientation to the south-southeast made sense in this case.”

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