Alpine shelter equipped with Qinous energy storage system

Qinous, Bridge and Solare Energie have demonstrated with this project that even picturesque places only reachable on foot can be supplied with environmentally friendly and reliable energy. While manpower and pack animals carried the building materials for the hut up over steep rocks nearly 100 years ago, installation of the 17 kWp photovoltaic system and 61 kWh battery storage system was made possible through the use of helicopters.

Some 1,000 visitors a day are served up Austrian delicacies and find accommodation at the popular destination on Lake Attersee. “More and more people are seeking out nature,” says Georg Unterberger and Peter Kapelari, head of the huts, trails and cartography division at the Austrian Alpine Association (ÖAV). “The number of active members in alpine associations has risen sharply in recent years.”

As a result of the swelling ranks of alpinists, energy requirements have also risen over the past few years. “As alpine associations, we place particularly high demands on energy supplies from renewable sources in huts that carry our environmental seal of approval. What impressed us about the Qinous solution was its reliability and its modern, holistic and flexibly expandable concept,” says Peter Hochleitner, chairman of the ÖAV’s Vöcklabruck section.

“The use of an industrial energy storage system and smart metering is very interesting for the huts of the German Alpine Association. The number of visitors to the DAV huts is also rising sharply. The higher capacity utilization not only requires additional rooms, but also a stronger and more reliable energy supply “, says Xaver Wankerl from the department of huts, paths and climbing facilities of the DAV.

This project, which uses the first suitable energy storage system of an industrial design and smart metering, is very interesting for the huts of the German Alpine Club (Deutscher Alpenverein DAV), as the number of visitors to the DAV huts is also rising sharply. The higher capacity utilization not only requires additional buildings, but also a stronger and more reliable energy supply “, says Robert Kolbitsch, head of the department of huts, paths and climbing facilities of the DAV.

“Thanks to the cooperation of the three expert sustainable energy teams, we were able to update the energy supply of the Hochleckenhaus to the state of the art, so that it can cover nearly its entire demand with solar energy. The Hochleckenhaus is one of many exciting projects that we are implementing in remote and inaccessible regions, on islands, in mountains and in deserts,” says Steffen Heinrich, the chief technical officer at Qinous.

A further advantage of the new system is the resulting clarity. The Qinous off-grid network and energy management system not only monitors and controls the storage system, the PV plant and the gas generators, it can also monitor and log gas consumption for the individual generators and the kitchen separately as well as domestic water consumption.

The PV plant including the inverters was supplied and installed by the Austrian company Solare Energie GmbH, which is very experienced in the installation of solar plants in the mountain locations. The demanding retrofitting of the main load control cabinet and the connection of the new battery system was conducted by the managing director and master of craftsman in electro technology Mr. Heimo Modre personally.

Concept development, planning and project management were handled by Bridge Executive Consulting, which also designed and implemented the smart metering system for the seamless recording of generation and consumption data, and contributed its many years of experience in military and civil projects in alpine locations. The demanding engineering of the metrology and its communication interfaces as well as the general management of the project were conducted by the managing director Stefan Perlot, M.Eng. personally on site.