The Model Region: Facts & Figures

Over 16 million people live in the WindNODE region between the Baltic Sea and the Thuringian Forest. All stages of the value chain, grid levels, market roles and actors of a complete electrical energy system are present and participating in WindNODE. With renewable energy primarily coming from the volatile sources of wind and sun making up a shar e of well over 56 percent of electricity consumption, the region is a unique pioneer of the ener gy transition in this respect and offers a view of the future of our energy system.

Experience with Energy and Transition

The history of modern energy supply began roughly 150 years ago in the heart of what is today the WindNODE region. With the presentation of his electric generator, Werner von Siemens laid the foundation for the breakthrough of electrification. Roughly 75 years ago, it was in this region where Konrad Zuse presented the first functional computer to the world. And today, both of these developments are merging in the “digitalisation of the energy industry”: a traditional Energy region that also has one of the liveliest start-up Scenes in Europe. The WindNODE region is and – and will remain – an energy pioneer.


108 946 km²  total area

approx. 87 000
jobs in renewables
(as of 2016)

16.2 mio. residents

WindNODE works within an environment that is already characterised by challenges such as the structural change in Lusatia, issues of acceptance of wind farms and grid expansion as well as discussions with the “electrical neighbours” of Poland and the  Czech Republic concerning what are termed “loop flows”.


Security with Wind and Sun

The WindNODE region covers over half of its electricity consumption from renewable sources. The green electricity comes primarily from volatile sources (sun and, in particular, wind), which depend on the time of day and the w eather. Even through periods of low daylight, thick cloud covers and slow winds, and through episodes of high solar insolation, clear skies and powerful gusts, the electricity consumers of our region enjoy world class security of supply.

The reliability of the electricity supply in a country is measured by the System Average Interruption Duration Index (SAIDI). The SAIDI indicates how many minutes of the year, on average, end consumers have no electricity. Germany traditionally maintains a top position in this ranking.

SAIDI in Minutes for 2016


> 54 TWh
of electrical energy were fed into the grid in the model region in 2017.

> 56.5 %
of the annual electricity consumption were covered by renewables


A Region as Prototype for the Energy Transition

The WindNODE region features the ideal conditions for developing solutions to the challenges of the energy transition. Solutions which can also be employed to advance the energy transition elsewhere: The model region encompasses the entire control area of the transmission system operator 50Hertz (with the exception of Hamburg), including all levels and actors of a complete, large-scale energy system. Thinly populated areas with abundant wind power generation capacity exist alongside urban centres with high power demand.


32.9 GW
Installed Power from Renewables*

This is the total installed power of all renewable power stations in the region that qualify for privileged feed-in based on the EEG in the year 2018.

Ratio of Installed Renewable Power to Peak Load*

This means that renewables could – in the theoretical case of optimal availability of solar and wind power – cover more than twice the annual peak load in the model region. In practice, of course, this value is never achieved. However, a new record was set in the 50Hertz control area in January 2019: For the first time, wind turbines supplied over 16 GW of power simultaneously.

16 GW
Annual Peak Load*

At the same time, all consumers in the region draw a maximum of about 16 GW of electrical power from the grid.

* Refers to the 50Hertz control area (including Hamburg).

  • Renewable means volatile: The supply of renewable energy in the model region is dominated by wind and solar. Shares of installed power by technology in 2017.

A Glimpse into the Future of the Energy System

The high share of fluctuating energy regularly brings the power grids to their limits and makes frequent interventions by the transmission system operator necessary: a challenge that other regions will face more frequently in the future, too. The strength of WindNODE therefore arises in part from the uniqueness of the region, where the future of energy is already, in many ways, part of the present.

> 1.2 %
of the total renewable generation were curtailed in 2018.

This is done in accordance with § 13.2 of the German Energy Industry Act in order to avoid (physical) grid congestions.

686 GWh
of electrical energy could not be used productively.

This is the average annual electricity consumption of more than 90.000 German citizens.


 Installed generation capacity (MW)

 Net expansion of generation capacity in 2017 (MW)

 Number of renewable power plants


Sources: Federal Statistical Office, Institute of Economic Structures Research (GWS), 50Hertz, Council of European Energy Regulators.

Impressions from the WindNODE region! This video clip summarizes eastern Germany's rich history of scientific and regulatory innovation in power production and consumption, and WindNODE's role in producing and facilitating new sustainable energy initiatives that will enable the energy transition of tomorrow.

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