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22.12.2014

Modular technology geared to the highest efficiency and reliability

In Hamm, RWE operates one of the most modern coal-fired power plants in the world and is breaking new ground in the process.

To meet the demand for future-proof energy, the energy supply must balance security of supply, economic efficiency and environmental compatibility. Coal power plants can also play their part.

One of the most modern coal-fired power plants in the world, the RWE coal power plant in Hamm
One of the most modern coal-fired power plants in the world, the RWE coal power plant in Hamm

RWE is one of Europe’s leading electricity and gas companies. In power generation, the company relies on a broad energy mix of gas, coal, nuclear power and renewable sources. Use of the most modern technologies ensures careful preservation of nature and its resources. The coal power plant in Hamm shows that efficient coal power plants can also play a key role as part of the required renewal of power stations.

With an output of 1,600 megawatts, the twin block facility can secure the electricity needs of 3.2 million households. Block E has been in commercial operation since 2 July 2014. Both blocks are equipped with technology that sets new standards in terms of efficiency and resource conservation. The new units achieve optimum electrical efficiency for current technology - 46 percent. As a result, about 2.5 million tons less CO2 are emitted into the atmosphere for the same amount of electricity.

Coal power plant
Coal power plant

Secure energy supply for the power plant’s own consumption

During the construction of the new blocks D and E, RWE chose the proven BENNING UPS systems.
The installed power supplies are based on modern IGBT rectifiers in mono block design, modular DC converter systems and modular inverters. Two parallel power rails in 2 x 100% redundancy configuration are always built in standard power plants. The availability of the power supply was further enhanced through the use of modular inverters, each in n + 1 redundancy per rail to the standard required (2 x 100% redundancy).

BENNING manufactured additional power supply systems for the aforementioned coal power plant. These were used to supply sensitive loads in the warehouse and ancillary workshops.

TEBECHOP 13500 SE 220 V-55 A (66 A)
TEBECHOP 13500 SE 220 V-55 A (66 A)

They ensure the safe operation of lighting, network components, communication and an engine test stand as well as other infrastructure components. Although these loads do not involve process engineering plant components, a high level of availability is essential. RWE therefore commissioned BENNING in August 2014 to devise an appropriate power supply solution.

BENNING designed two solutions. The first approach followed the classic power plant arrangement with 2 x 100% redundant systems like those already in operation at blocks D and E.
The second proposal was based on modular technology in n + 1 (or n + x) redundant configuration. This modular technology requires significantly less space and saves energy and service costs.

The modular systems offer a high degree of reliability through customisable levels of redundancy. They are characterised by good economic efficiency due to the highest levels of energy efficiency and low TCO (total cost of ownership). For example, hot swappable modules can be quickly and easily replaced to reduce service costs and downtime.

INVERTRONIC modular 15 kVA
INVERTRONIC modular 15 kVA

As standard, BENNING systems also offer the required monitoring and reporting systems for power plants. In addition, the two power systems to be installed contain a total of 17 TEBECHOP 13500 SE (Super Efficiency) modular rectifiers, ten 15 kVA INVERTRONIC modular inverter series modules and various distribution and battery configurations. If an increase in capacity or redundancy expansion is necessary in the future, more modules can simply be added (pay as you grow).


RWE and BENNING carried out detailed planning and manufacturing in close cooperation prior to the systems’ plant approval testing, which took place jointly in January 2015 so that the plant could be put into operation in February 2015.

With the new, highly efficient, modular power supply units, RWE not only receives fail-safe systems, but also stays true to the claim, “RWE - the energy to lead” in terms of security of supply, cost-efficiency and environmental compatibility.

Modularity for heavy duty industrial applications
Modularity for heavy duty industrial applications

Modularity for heavy duty industrial applications

For decades BENNING has supplied large numbers of modular rectifiers and inverters for the battery back-up power supply of
electronic systems in the telecommunication and information technology. These modular systems have proved their worth
due to their high availability and excellent ease of service. Taking into account the special conditions when used in the petrochemical industry and its power generation, as well as distribution, BENNING has developed robust, modular rectifier and inverter systems, which are also suitable for rugged industrial use. These modular concepts are even certified for nuclear power plants. Appropriate systems are currently being manufactured for a large energy producer in Eastern Europe and will soon go into operation.

Total cost of ownership (TCO)

In addition to capital and operating costs, installation, space, maintenance costs and output expansion cost must be considered over the whole life cycle of a plant.

Demand-driven investment

Modular plug-and-play technology can reduce these costs compared to conventional systems. A needs-oriented adaptation of the output can be realised at any time in stages.

Further Information

contact: Achim Pickardt
telephone: +49 (0) 28 71 / 93 -513
e-mail: a.pickardt@benning.de

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