Fronius receives sustainability certification and wins Smart Grids Pioneer award

System engineer Christoph Winter accepted the “Smart Grid Pioneer 2014” award for Fronius.
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Fronius International GmbH has been awarded the title of “Smart Grids Pioneer 2014” for its research project “morePV2grid”. Fronius has also recently completed the audit of the environmental management system in accordance with ISO 14001.

“The Smart Grid Pioneer award and environmental management certification once again underline the position of Fronius as the quality leader and as a pioneer in the fields of innovation and sustainability,” says Martin Hackl, head of the Solar Energy Division at Fronius International.

Fronius is the Smart Grids Pioneer

Fronius International GmbH recently won one of the three BMVIT1 awards – “Smart Grids Pioneer 2014” – for its project morePV2grid. The goal of the project was to strengthen the continuing development of electricity infrastructures and to promote links with international developments.

“The project demonstrates how local control functions in inverters can effectively and efficiently improve the density of the PV systems that can be integrated into the low-voltage grid,” explains system engineer Christoph Winter, who supported the project on behalf of Fronius International.

The concept was drafted in cooperation with research partner AIT² and grid operator Netz Oberösterreich GmbH. It was out of this project that the Advanced Grid Features arose, which have been implemented in Fronius inverters. The project group then successfully carried out a field test to examine the stability and effectiveness of the functionalities.

The concept is based on the premise that intelligent inverters can actively support voltage stability in the electrical grid. This is delivered through an optimised local control³ of effective and reactive power, but without any higher-level communication technology. The results of the three year study show that reactive power control can increase the possible power of feeding in – depending on the electrical characteristics of the local grid – by 20 to 80 percent.

Furthermore, the project group came to the conclusion that this figure can be improved even further with additional effective power optimisation in line with the voltage of the respective grid. Good news for all those involved, since these results allow for a significant increase in the grid-compatible density of PV systems.

Fronius inverters also provide unbeatable support for the grid even without any communication functionalities, as proven by morePV2grid4. The follow-up project, DG DemoNet – Smart LV Grid, which focuses on coordinated optimisation of local controls using communication, is currently in the final stages. This shows that Fronius inverters are already equipped to meet future requirements thanks to their numerous communication options.

Fronius receives ISO certification for environmental management
As part of an external audit, Fronius has recently been certified in accordance with ISO14001, Environmental Management. The sustainable use of resources has always been important to Fronius, and is an integral part of the company values. Over the past few years Fronius has introduced numerous measures to protect the environment.

As stated in the Fronius company values regarding sustainability: “Our products and services are meaningful and sustainable. We are playing our part in taking care of the world’s resources. We are committed to our society and the environment. Our children can be proud of our decisions.” This certification underlines Fronius’ goal to continually improve in the field of environmental protection and to implement concrete measures. ISO 14001 was published in 1996 and is an environmental management system in which environmental protection is placed firmly at the heart of the management process. Management processes and organisational structures are thus brought to the fore.

1 Federal Ministry for Transport, Innovation and Technology in Austria
² Austrian Institute of Technology GmbH
³ in the inverter
4 Another project partner was MEA solar GmbH. The project was sponsored by the Climate and Energy Fund (Klima- und Energiefonds).