Until now, plants for generating electricity have followed the paradigm of process engineering: the larger the plant, the more economical (efficiency of size). In recent years, the output of wind, nuclear and fossil-fuel power plants has increased continuously. With their size, however, the construction and commissioning times as well as the operating risk increase and the acceptance on the part of the population decreases. At the same time, the immense production volume of photovoltaic cells for power generation is leading to strong economic competition for established technologies. This is where the principles of production technology come into play: the larger the number of units, the cheaper the products (economies of scale).
The proposed study is intended to examine whether the following effects can make the massive use of small power plants marketable in competition with the economies of scale in efficiency pursued to date:
- The enormous economies of scale with increasing unit numbers of smaller plants more than compensate for the loss of positive effects due to size, without having to accept the increased risks.
- Significantly larger production volumes make it possible to switch to technologies with significantly better performance values.
- Smaller plants can achieve significantly better acceptance, energy autonomy and environmental compatibility.