Ambitious research project on flexible hydropower in future energy systems

The research and development project HydroFlex, in which Multiconsult participates as the only consulting engineering firm, receives support from the EU Horizon 2020 research and innovation program.

3. December 2018

“The purpose of the HydroFlex project is to develop new technology that allows for a very flexible operation of hydropower plants. The HydroFlex project will also assess the environmental and socio-economic impacts of flexible hydropower throughout all life cycle stages.  Multiconsult has a strong academic record in hydropower, and actively contribute to the development of new knowledge in the energy sector. This is crucial for maintaining and further developing our leading expertise in hydropower”, says Bjarne Børresen, Section Head of Hydropower Mechanical.

Increasing the value of a future energy system

Renewable energy generation continues its strong growth worldwide and is projected by the International Energy Agency (IEA) to grow by over 1 TW, a 46% growth over the period 2018 to 2023.  However, the variability of renewable sources such as wind and solar poses a challenge when included in the energy system because it must be balanced by other energy sources. Hydropower, a renewable energy technology, is such a balancing resource. Making hydropower more flexible can thus further increase the value of a future energy system.

Central actors from the hydropower industry

Norwegian University of Technology and Science have brought together key players from the entire value chain in the hydropower industry. In addition to a number of European academic partners, the business partners in the program consist of Multiconsult, Lyse Produksjon, Rainpower Norge, Vattenfall , Statkraft, ABB, SINTEF Energy Research and EDR & Medeso. The project will last for four years with a budget of over euro 5.7 million in the period 2018-2021.

“The project consists of 6 work packages. Multiconsult contributes to all work packages and has the main responsibility for the activity WP6 “Communication, Dissemination and Exploitation”. WP6 will carry out activities for the effective dissemination and exploitation of the project results. The activities will focus on bringing high value scientific and technical results from the research out to the hydropower industry stakeholders.  Our participation in the project is motivated by contributing to the development of a flexible and sustainable energy system and bridging the technology gaps that currently exists in the system”, says Børresen.

World leading competence through 100 years

Multiconsult has worked in the hydropower industry for more than 100 years, and is a world-leading provider of services to the renewable energy sector, the company has expertise in all disciplines required to identify, study, plan, design, manage and supervise construction of a wide range of projects, and has successfully implemented hydro-, wind-, bio-, solar, and transmission and distribution projects all over the world.