Currently, mainly large power plants provide balancing energy in Italy. In order to incentivize new players to participate on the ancillary services market, TERNA has launched a pilot project to test new ways of providing balancing energy, for instance through aggregating smaller assets. It is called “Progetto Pilota Per Unità Virtuali Abilitate Miste” or UVAM for short. UVAM defines the framework for Virtual Power Plants in Italy for the first time. As part of this project, Next Kraftwerke took part in the auction.
TERNA tenders control reserve in annual auctions, quarterly auctions and monthly auctions. There are two market zones in Italy for which prequalified providers can bid. Within those market zones, there are 15 aggregation zones. In those aggregation zones, it is permitted to aggregate different plants in order to achieve the required minimum size for the provision of balancing energy of one megawatt. Next Kraftwerke provided flexibility throughout November from Monday to Friday in the market zone A (North, Central-North) and aggregation zone 5 in the time slice 14-20 hours.
Since 2017, Cologne-based Virtual Power Plant Next Kraftwerke with its Italian subsidiary Centrali Next has been active on the Italian market as a power trader. "We are delighted to be one of the first Virtual Power Plants to have taken this important step in the Italian market," says Filippo Cantelmi, Business Developer at Centrali Next. "There is a fixed remuneration with a maximum price of 30,000 Euro per megawatt per year just for providing control reserve and a variable remuneration if the provided flexibility gets called by TERNA. Therefore, UVAM is a very nice opportunity to generate additional revenue for cogeneration plants and large consumers, for example. We will therefore continue to participate in auctions together with our customers in the future".
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Fotocredit: Next Kraftwerke