Wärtsilä releases next-generation grid balancing engine solution Wärtsilä 31SG balancer to enable renewables at lower cost

Wärtsilä has launched its next-generation grid balancing technology, designed to provide flexible grid capacity even in adverse weather conditions and enable renewables to perform as the lowest-cost, most resilient power source for grids worldwide.

The solution is based on three fully integrated key components: the Wärtsilä 31SG balancer engine, prefabricated modules for cost-efficient plant construction, and Wärtsilä lifecycle services. The Wärtsilä 31SG balancer offers 12,400 kW (8 per cent more power) at a heat rate of 6,800 Btu per kWh /+50 per cent efficiency, lowering the cost and risk of the renewable transition through flexible, resilient capacity. The new engine technology is designed to provide power producers with fast-ramping balancing power, which can be scaled up as the share of renewables in power systems increases. The engine can start and ramp up rapidly to support intermittent renewable generation so that the lowest cost cleanest energy technology can become the dominant power source.

The engine in the Wärtsilä 31SG balancer solution has been designed especially for U.S. environmental conditions, including adverse weather, to provide the optimal flexible technology and ensure continued running at times of extreme cold, or heat, from -40°C – +45°C /-40°F – +113°F.

The Wärtsilä 31SG balancer responds to market needs with a cost-efficient plant construction design, based on prefabricated, high-quality power plant modules. It reduces time-to-electricity with 30 per cent less site work than traditional construction methods.

The key features of the Wärtsilä 31SG balancer:

  • Wärtsilä 31SG balancer engine: More power while still maintaining high efficiency
  • Cost-efficient and fast plant construction: Enabling balancing capacity to be built-up over time, as renewables are added.
  • Fuel flexibility: Can run on natural gas, biogas and hydrogen blend with broad opportunities for future conversions to sustainable fuels.
  • Lifecycle services: Remote support enables leaner operations and Wärtsilä can guarantee plant performance.