Making a power plant future fit - a tailor-made solution for BASF

As the site expands and develops, a BASF chemical park in Germany will have an increased energy demand. With a focus to become climate neutral until 2050. How can it grow more sustainably?
Sustainable growth

More efficiency, lower emissions

Today, the BASF site located in Schwarzheide, Germany, employs 3,500 people. The site is expected to grow and wants to enter new business fields, such as the production of battery material.


The site will face an increased energy demand but is focused to become sustainable as it grows. If BASF is to achieve its goals to become climate neutral, a change in energy policy is vital.


A combined-cycle power plant, built in 1994, supplies power, process steam and heat to the site. The modernization project is to be finished in 2022. Their modernized power plant will provide a power output of 110 MW and 200m³/h steam.It is now 10 percent more efficient and emits a more than 16 percent lower volume of greenhouse gases such as CO₂. 

Sustainability is an issue. Sustainability is a growth engine for us, a huge opportunity.
Jürgen Fuchs, Site Manager at BASF Schwarzheide, Germany
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Creating chemistry for a sustainable future


This is not just an end in itself, because BASF’s own customers, e.g. the automotive industry, signal a rapidly growing demand for eco-friendly products in their supply chain, too.  The site's CCPP power plant ensures a flexible energy supply and was now modernized as a brownfield project


While one power line ensured the uninterrupted power and heat supply of the site, the second power line was modernized. "An open heart surgery" as all project members describe the task.

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Scope of supply


Flexible energy supply

Jürgen Fuchs, head of the management board BASF Schwarzheide, and Julie DeKeyser, head of infrastructure, talk about the challenge of a sustainable growth. How can a chemical park expand its business and grow in a climate-neutral way in the same time?

Modernization during full operation - an extremely demanding task

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Operating at the open heart

In 2019, BASF Schwarzheide engaged Siemens Energy to carry out a "brownfield exchange project". From 2020 to 2022, parts of the existing combined cycle power plant were modernized without interrupting ongoing operations. One of the two gas turbine lines were refurbished while the second gas turbine ensured the site's power supply.

The scope of supply

Siemens Energy replaced one of the existing gas turbines with a SGT-800, thereby raising this line's output from 45 MW to 52 MW. Combined with a modernized generator, the power plant runs with increased efficiency while incurring lower fuel costs per kilowatt-hour.


SIESTART battery energy storage system was installed during subsequent commissioning, enabling a black start of the power plant without having to rely on external power sources. Here too, BASF has decided to explore new avenues in a departure from the conventional solution with a diesel generator for the emergency power supply.


The plant scheme is exemplary.


Our answers for BASF's challenge


"As an engineer, I couldn’t hope for a more exciting project"

Siemens Energy engineers Eric Brückner and Bernd Künstler share some insights of the project in the video interviews below.

“The cooperation was no less than excellent”

Iain Anderson, Project manager service operations, reflects the project execution

What is special about the industrial gas turbine delivered to BASF?

Supplied is a B5 model of the SGT800, which is best suitable for the customer requirements in this project, especially for the green approach BASF is looking for, both now and their future cooperation.

With the additional active orifice solution and lower TiT (turbine inlet temperature), we were able to reduce the original customer emission requirements even further, which makes this a highly sustainable product for future development within the carbon footprint visions.


How do you experience the project execution?

This is a highly advanced and complex project as there are existing plant interfaces that need to fit and be adapted to the Brownfield exchange product being supplied. The Re-use of the existing generator is a prime example of these challenges as it is now placed on the mirrored side of the GT requiring major modifications of the generator i.e. rotation direction. Detailed information of the generator beforehand was limited due to its age, so a large risk management effort was in place to secure handling of potential findings during the efforts in the workshop.


How did you experience the cooperation with BASF?

The cooperation with BASF on all project matters has been no less than excellent! We have mutually created a highly efficient and transparent communication throughout the project progress and duly included each other to always secure we manage risks and issues together and find the win-wins in all possible cases. 

Decarbonization strategies for a lower CO₂ footprint 

Decarbonization does not happen over night, it takes time. Learn more about our holistic approach.