Bad Soden, Germany,

AmpaCity wins German Climate and Environment Innovation Award 2015

The AmpaCity pilot project for more efficient electricity transmission has won the German Climate and Environment Innovation Award (IKU) 2015. Industrial gases specialist Messer developed a new cooling technology for the superconducting power supply cable used in utility RWE’s AmpaCity project. Normally, it is not possible to cool anything to below minus 196 degrees using liquid nitrogen. However, Messer’s new cooling technology vaporises liquid nitrogen at below atmospheric pressure, thus achieving a temperature of minus 209 degrees Celsius and facilitating electricity transmission through the cable virtually without losses. Superconductors are seen as a forward-looking solution for particularly space-saving and effective electricity transmission in towns and cities as well as at industrial facilities.

This year the award, which is bestowed by the Federation of German Industries (BDI) and the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety, was presented for the fifth time in recognition of innovative climate-friendly and environmentally friendly processes, products or services. The judges’ decision was based on a scientific evaluation of the submitted applications by the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research. The winners in the five categories – process innovations for climate protection, product and service innovations for climate protection, environmentally friendly technologies, environmentally friendly products and services, climate and environmental protection technology transfer in developing markets and emerging economies and Eastern European countries – received their awards personally from Federal Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks and Holger Lösch, member of the BDI executive board, along with prize money totalling 25,000 euros each. The IKU is funded by the Federal Environment Ministry’s National Climate Initiative.