Since the beginning of the year, two Rolls-Royce combined heat and power plants have been supplying energy to a new tomato greenhouse operated by Maxburg BVBA in Meer in Belgium. The two gas-powered gensets have reliably supplied over 20 Megawatt hours of heat and power to date. Maxburg is now the 30th greenhouse for which Rolls-Royce has delivered combined heat and power plants. Since 2005, no less than 52 combined heat and power plants manufactured by Rolls-Royce have generated a total electrical output of 270 MW in greenhouses in Holland, Belgium, Russia and the UK.
Back in 2008 and 2010, Rolls-Royce delivered two combined heat and power plants to the greenhouse operator John Vermeiren in Loenhout and in Merksplas in Belgium. As John Vermeiren says: “The high level of efficiency of the medium-speed gensets and their reliability impressed us so much that we decided once again in favour of Rolls-Royce for the energy supply
of our third greenhouse in Meer.”
The gensets are based on the medium-speed B35:40 V12 AG2 engines from Rolls-Royce, each of which is able to generate an electrical output of 5,650 kW and a thermal output of 6,545 kW. They achieve an efficiency level of more than 96 per cent. The electric power is used primarily for the greenhouse lamps and, if required, is fed into the public grid. The greenhouse, which extends over an area of 10.2 hectares, is heated using the heat extracted from the exhaust gas and the engine’s cooling system. The cleaned exhaust gases from the engines are also injected into the greenhouses to increase the level of CO2 and boost plant growth. John Vermeiren expects to achieve an annual production of 7.5 million kilogrammes of tomatoes at the Maxburg greenhouse.
Rolls-Royce has delivered the complete CHP plants, consisting of the power generator sets, the exhaust gas systems, including the SCR systems and the heat exchangers. The electronic control systems
are also included in the scope of supply. Operator John Vermeiren and Rolls-Royce have concluded a long-term service agreement for the combined heat and power plants covering approximately 4,500 hours of operation per year over the next 10 years.