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access icon openaccess Quantifying flexibility of industrial steam systems for ancillary services: a case study of an integrated pulp and paper mill

Due to the increasing use of intermittent renewable generation, the power grid requires more flexible resources to balance supply and demand of electricity. Steam systems with turbine-generators, which are widely used in industries, can be operated flexibly to support the power grid. Yet, the available amount of flexibility of industrial steam systems is still not clearly quantified. This study presents the method to quantify electricity generation flexibility of a typical industrial steam system with a steam turbine-generator and process heat demands. The proposed method is introduced based on a real case of an integrated pulp and paper mill in Austria. An integrated mathematical model representing the combined electricity and steam system is developed to simulate the behaviour of the on-site energy system to quantify the potential flexibility provision. Flexibility is represented as the maximum upward and downward changes in the imported electricity from the public power grid. The results demonstrate that it is possible to aggregate the flexibility of the industrial facility as a lookup table. Also, the results reflect key factors that limit the flexibility at different operating points of the turbine-generator.

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