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[en] The German Federal Government published its energy concept in September 2010 with a description of the road into the era of renewable energies. Therefore, the future renewable energy installed in Germany is expected to consist mostly of wind and solar, which are subject to intermittency of supply and significant fluctuations. The growing portion of energy generation by fluctuating sources is turning to a big challenge for the power plant unit commitment and the investment decisions as well. In this thesis, a fundamental electricity market model with combined modeling of these two aspects is developed. This model is subsequently applied to the German electricity market to investigate what kind of power plant investments are indispensable, considering the steadily increasing portion of energy generation from fluctuating sources, to ensure a reliable energy supply in a cost-effective way in the future. In addition, current energy policy in Germany regarding the use of renewable energy and nuclear energy is analyzed.
[en] One opinion in the current discussion about energy policy is that the extension of nuclear power will impede renewables-based supply because nuclear power and renewable energies would be incompatible within the integrated electricity network. A technical-economic analysis of the electricity generating system with high shares of electricity generation from renewables shows that this assertion cannot be supported from a technical and operational perspective. In terms of lower electricity prices and climate protection a nuclear phase-out might even be counterproductive. (orig.)
[en] The German government intends to develop the share of renewable energy sources in electric power supply and to get the funds for this from longer operating periods of German nuclear power stations. Against this background, opponents have revived the false story of a conflict between renewable energy sources and nuclear power. Contrary to this opinion, the authors show that nuclear power plants, with their built-in load variation options, can help to balance the fluctuating supply of solar and wind power. (orig.)
[en] The promotion of renewable energy resources for electricity generation in Germany has led to a pronounced increase in supplies of electricity fluctuating as a function of availability from wind converters and photovoltaic plants. Further expansion of these systems using renewables is going to result in a more extreme pattern of residual load to be covered by all other conventional power plants. In the past few months, the debate about opting out of the reduction of plant life of German nuclear power plants has intensified. In this connection, it was alleged again and again that nuclear power plants were not flexible enough for operation compatible with an increasing share of fluctuating electricity generation from wind converters and photovoltaic plants, and would thus impede the growing use of renewables. Taking a closer look at that assertion, this contribution examines in what way nuclear power plant life extension would be likely to entail technical or operational restrictions which could counteract the integration of a rising share of renewables in electricity generation. In addition, the economic effects and the impact on CO2 emissions of plant life extension are estimated for an electricity generating system with a large share of renewables. It turns out that nuclear power plants can participate in load-following operation from a technical as well as an operational viewpoint. Consequently, plant life extension is no obstacle to the integration of renewable energy sources. Actually, plant life extension would make sense on grounds of economy and CO2 emissions. (orig.)
[en] Already today, renewable energies make a noticeable contribution to meet electricity demand. Electricity generation from renewables is mostly yield-dependant and hence, fluctuating. A further extension of renewables will therefore lead to a considerably more extreme gradient of the residual load, which is to be met by the conventional fleet of power plants. This contribution pursues the question of whether the existing German nuclear power plants for technical-operative reasons and at the target extension of renewable energies could realistically enter load following operation or whether they might be a stumbling block for this development. (orig.)