This increase in regenerative energy was made possible by the expansion of the regional 20 kV power grid and the clever use that Arburg's forward-looking management team made of the synergy effects that arose when the overhead power lines were laid underground. Michael Hehl, Managing Partner, says: "Connecting the wind turbines to our in-house power grid and using the energy generated for Arburg made perfect sense, especially in the current situation. As part of the 20 kV expansion of the Lossburg power grid, we were able to limit the costs of integration." The company still had to invest several hundreds of thousands of euros in this 2.4-kilometre-long cable connection, but it was money well spent according to Michael Hehl since by feeding the wind energy generated into the grid, Arburg can use the electricity equivalent of around 340 households in the company itself.
Regional energy and even more CO2 savings
With this move, Arburg is consistently pursuing its goal of becoming even more independent of fossil raw materials through the use of natural resources. Generating and using regional energy is also another step towards increased carbon neutrality. Florian Schmitz, head of the Building Services department, calculates: "The cost of the power line to the wind turbines will have paid for itself in less than five years. With the additional 1.7 megawatts of generator power, we are adding another pillar to our regional regenerative energy concept. The direct connection is only logical: to generate energy directly where it is needed." He notes that for Arburg, wind energy is the logical complement to its geothermal energy system and the nine photovoltaic plants with a total output of 2.75 MWp.
Power generation at a height of 99 metres
The wind turbines not only provide additional electricity for Arburg, but also offer exciting insights into the technology of these behemoths that tower 99 metres into the Black Forest sky. The simple explanation for this height is that wind must have a certain strength in order to generate electricity at all. So the higher the wind turbine, the stronger the wind blows on top. Under normal conditions, the tips of the 26-metre-long rotor blades, which cover a total of 2,124 square metres, reach a top speed of 200 kilometres per hour. To prevent the turbine from self-destructing through excessive rotation, the blades always rotate in a way that stops them from becoming too fast in the first place. They reach a maximum of 31.4 revolutions per minute. The control technology and generator are located in a nacelle the size of a standard car garage.