PannErgy reports record heat sales from geothermal operations in Hungary

PannErgy company website snapshot
Alexander Richter Alexander Richter 15 Apr 2019

Hungarian geothermal company PannErgy reports record heat sales figures in Q1 2019 compared to the same period last year, partly as a result of the overall effectiveness of the Györ Geothermal Project, capacity factors reached, as well as weather conditions during the periods concerned.

In a release yesterday, Hungarian PannErgy reports record sales from its geothermal operations in Hungary.

PannErgy Plc publishes quarterly production reports in order to present its operations in green energy generation and utilization in Hungary. In this report, PannErgy gives a description of the conditions of its geothermal energy production systems, functioning and operating experience, as well as information in relation to the realized green heat sales.

A comparison of the 2019 Q1 heat sales figures to those of the corresponding period of the preceding year shows a considerable improvement year-on-year, as a result of an increase in the overall effectiveness of the Gy?r Geothermal Project and the rates of utilization of its capacities, as well as the weather conditions during the periods concerned.

The 2 – 8 °C ambient temperature range is ideal for the day-to-day geothermal heat sales during the heating season: the smaller the difference between the daily minimum and maximum temperature, the better for this industry. Figure 3 illustrates the considerable differences between the average temperatures in 2019 Q1 and 2018 Q1. While January was much colder this year, February and March were characterized by milder wintery temperatures, closer to the ideal range for the utilization of geothermal energy. No service failure having a material impact on the sale of thermal energy occurred during the first quarter of this year at any of the projects under review. The amount of heat sold in 2019 Q1 was 8.7% up on the corresponding figure recorded for 2018 Q1, as base period.

Miskolc Geothermal Project (Miskolci Geotermia Zrt., Kuala Kft.)

The Geothermal System of Miskolc sold a total of 294,930 GJ thermal energy in 2019 Q1, almost precisely as much as in the corresponding period of 2018. The weather conditions could have enabled the sale of an additional 15-20,000 GJ a month but the town’s district heating system was supplied with a higher ratio of heat generated from fossil fuels during the months of January and February than in the corresponding periods of earlier years. The parties concerned wish to optimize arrangements for increasing the input of green energy. The 2019 summer maintenance and inspection schedule was worked out during the period under review. The reduced loads outside the heating system make it possible to carry out comprehensive checks and maintenance on the wells, operated in an alternating scheme. The geothermal production wells and the geothermal reservoir are under continuous monitoring. No material change has been observed in comparison to earlier periods. The Company lays particular emphasis on the maintenance and preservation of the wells and the geothermal systems to maximize the length of their useful life.

Gy?r Geothermal Project (DD Energy Kft., Arrabona Geotermia Kft. and PannErgy Koncessziós Kft.)

The Geothermal System of Gy?r sold a total of 325,050 GJ thermal energy during 2019 Q1, up 19% year-on-year, as a result of improvements in the efficiency of capacity utilization, as well as favorable weather conditions for the sale of heat. The increased sales figures were also driven by improved alignment of the characteristics of geothermal heat generation to the operation of Gy?r-Szol Zrt’s boiler capacities as a result of continuous facility developments making it more efficient in supporting the switches of between the operation of the 50 MW and the 100 MW boilers.

Geothermal Heating Facility of Szentl?rinc (Szentl?rinci Geotermia Zrt.)

The Geothermal Facility of Szentl?rinc continued to operate without failures in 2019 Q1. The mild weather had a less favorable effect on the Szentl?rinc project than on the other two, larger ones, because in Szentl?rinc there is only a geothermally supplied district heating system which was directly affected by the decrease in the demand for heat. The higher average temperatures resulted in a 11% drop – to 8,184 GJ – in the amount of heat sold, year-on-year. Thanks to the pump replacement and the resulting optimized operating conditions the specific energy consumption of the system continued to be significantly lower (by approx. 54%).

Geothermal Methane Utilization Facility of Berekfürd? (Berekfürd? Energia Kft.)

The Geothermal Methane Utilization Facility of Berekfürd? sold a total of 440,022 kWh electricity during the period under review. The gas engines’ availability rate improved, sales volumes were restored to previous levels particularly in February and March. The January sales figures were still negatively affected by the refurbishment of the larger gas engine. A total of 1,130 GJ worth of heat was sold during the reporting period, down nearly 200 GJ from the planned amount as a consequence of the outage of one of the gas engines.

Climate change

Adaptation to the negative consequences of the ongoing climate change is a national interest, given the fact that the phenomenon can now be proven by measurements in day-to-day life. In view of the existing atmospheric concentration of greenhouse gases, expected future emissions and authoritative scientific projections climate change is a persistent process. With its geothermal projects the PannErgy Group wishes to promote Hungary’s climate policy by contributing to sustainability, supporting the objectiveslaid down in the National Energy Strategy 2030 document. The utilization of the green thermal energy generated by the projects operated by the PannErgy Group contributed to climate protection during the period under review by cutting Hungary’s CO2 emission by 36,496 tons. The PannErgy Group’s projects contributed to the efforts made to preserve a more liveable environment by the CO2 emission cuts shown in Figure 9. The reduction amounted to 36,496 tons, while the total aggregate amount of greenhouse gas emission saved by the PannErgy Group so far amounts to 387,294 tons.

One of the evident effects of climate change in Hungary appears in the form of frequent hectic and extreme changes in weather conditions, including ambient temperatures, and a rise of the average temperature of the winter months from the historically cold, stable sub-zero range to markedly over the freezing point. These changes are not expected to have an adverse impact on the output of geothermal heat generation; indeed, perspectives of input into district heating systems are favorable as an average over multiple years. The reason for this is – as is noted in this report – the fact that daily geothermal heat sales are ideal in the 2-8 C temperature range during the heating season. At the same time, the potential decrease in the demand for heat during the transitional seasons may be compensated, indeed, overcompensated by the growth in the potential of the increasingly mild winter months.

The demand for energy in the large district heating systems supplied by the PannErgy Group is far greater than the amount of geothermal energy that can be fed into those systems. Accordingly, any change in demand stemming from the climate change for heat in the district heating systems have had, and are not expected by the company to have in the future as a trend, any perceptible effect on the PannErgy Group. PannErgy aims to utilize its substantial uncommitted available thermal capacities – in addition to the capacities being utilized now – which is expected to further reduce sensitiveness to ambient temperature changes. The most important possible areas for utilizing the available uncommitted thermal capacities include: – Implementation of energy efficiency and optimizing projects with existing customers; – Cold energy projects – for the utilization of the so-called “summer” heat; – Connection of new customers indirectly through district heating systems or directly to the geothermal systems on the primary or the secondary (return) sides.

For the full report including data, see link below.

Source: PannErgy