Monthly electricity generation in Germany in 2014, as seen July 26 2014 - Courtesy Fraunhofer ISE

Fraunhofer ISE’s new online tools

By Roy L Hales

Screen-shot-2014-03-18-at-3.43.47-PM1See the chart at the top of this page. That’s a screenshot from Fraunhofer ISE’s new online chart of Germany’s monthly electricity generation. The interesting thing about that seventh column is that I am writing on July 26. The month is not over, but I can already access the data on how much energy has been produced by every sector to date.  If you go their page, you can get the numbers by hovering over appropriate energy report. People who want a more accurate persecutive of how things are unfolding can change the settings to weekly or daily. This is just one of Fraunhofer ISE’s new online tools that allow immediate access to kind of data  previously only obtainable through third party reports.

Electricity production in Germany in week 25, 2014
Electricity production in Germany in week 25, 2014 (Click on image to expand) – Courtesy Fraunhofer ISE

“By making the data available on this website, it is our intent to promote transparent and objective discussions relating to all factors regarding the energy transformation in Germany,” Professor Eicke Weber said in Fraunhofer ISE’s press release.

“Our graphs of electricity production are very popular: for one, because we collect the data from several neutral sources and secondly because we continually update the time series data promptly,” reports Professor Bruno Burger, who heads the data collection department.

Electricity Import and Export in Europe in April 2014
Electricity Import and Export in Europe in April 2014 – – Courtesy Fraunhofer ISE

Want to get a picture of Europe’s energy trade? Click on this link and you can access a circular graph. Note that you can set it to a German or European perspective. I chose European, to the left, and found that the latest data was from  April.

Screenshot 2014-07-26 11.03.36
Looking at Germany’s network, from within “Electricity Import and Export in Europe in April 2014″ – – Courtesy Fraunhofer ISE

You can focus on individual countries without changing the setting.

I decided to look at Germany from this perspective.  Notice how the orange bands are thicker on the German (DE) side? That’s because Germany has positive trade balances with the Netherlands, Austria, Switzerland, Poland and Luxembourg. You can get the precise figures by going to their page and hovering the bands. (That does not transfer vis a screenshot, unfortunately.)On the top orange band, for example, it says that so far this year Germany has exported 9.4 TWh to the Netherlands, and imported 10 GWh.

Screenshot 2014-07-26 11.40.33
Germany’s electricity trade relationships in April 2014 – – Courtesy Fraunhofer ISE

Want to know how the same data looks if you change the settings to “Germany” rather than “Europe”? Look to the left again. Looks like al it did was drop the countries Germany is not trading with.

Another graph lets you see the wholesale price of electricity along with the various types of energy being fed to the grid. It will let you see data as recent as two days ago. The spot price hit a high of 125 euros on July 21st and a low of 4 on the 6th.  (Remember this is electricity is trading on the market, NOT what utilities are charging their customers.)

Electricity production and spot prices in July 2014, with data up to July 24
Electricity production and spot prices in July 2014, with data up to July 24, note spike on July 21 (Click on image to expand) – – Courtesy Fraunhofer ISE 

What I really wanted to see was the times that electricity was actually selling for less than 0. I found isolated days in March, April and May.

Screenshot 2014-07-26 12.00.19
Electricity production and spot prices in May 2014, note drop below 0 on May 11 (Click on image to enlarge) – – Courtesy Fraunhofer ISE

There is also an online tool at the EEX Transparency Platform that allows you to watch today’s energy mix. There is supposed to be a two hour delay, but the most recent data is from 6:00 and it would be 9:30 right now.

EEX Transparency Platform
EEX Transparency Platform

Germany started receiving solar energy at 7 am this morning. The output reached 5,068  MW by 8 am and was over 10,000 MW for seven hours. At the height, recorded at both 12:00 and 1:00 pm, there was more than 17,000 MW.

The conventional energy supply dipped below 31,000 MW during the high point, but was mostly between 31 and 32,000 during those seven hours of strong sunlight.

Expected wind power generation - Courtesy EXX
Expected wind power generation – Courtesy EXX

Another graph displays the expected wind energy for today. As you can see from the graph to the left, it neatly compliments today’s solar. Wind energy will be strongest tonight, when there is no sun.

“Our graphs of electricity production are very popular: for one, because we collect the data from several neutral sources and secondly because we continually update the time series data promptly,” reports Professor Bruno Burger, who heads Fraunhofer ISE’s data collection department.

I am impressed.

(Image at top of page: Monthly electricity generation in Germany in 2014, as seen July 26 2014 – Courtesy Fraunhofer ISE)

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