Frequently asked questions about automatic Frequency Restoration Reserve (aFRR)

1) What is automatic Frequency Restoration Reserve (aFRR)?

aFRR is used to restore the availability of the power bandwidth of the activated FCR. aFRR is automatically activated to relieve FCR, so that it can resume its function of balancing the system. aFRR is activated when the system is affected for longer than 30 seconds or it is assumed that the system will be affected for a period longer than 30 seconds. Prior to this, deviations in the system are only covered through FCR.

2) What is the range for reserved power for aFRR?

To stabilize the grid frequency using aFRR it must be possible to activate the control reserve in both directions (increased/reduced generation). Therefore a certain power range is reserved for the possible activation of aFRR.

3) Do power plants that provide aFRR have to operate continuously?

Suppliers who have entered an obligation to provide aFRR must meet this obligation over the entire delivery period without interruption. aFRR can only be generated in plants that are in operation. The supplier decides which of his prequalified power plants are used at any given time to provide the aFRR. In any case, he has to make sure that the agreed volume can be provided in full.

4) What happens when a supplier cannot meet his obligation to provide aFRR due to technical problems?

A supplier who cannot meet the obligation to provide aFRR due to technical problems must inform Austrian Power Grid AG immediately by telephone and also by e-mail.

If the failure can be attributed to gross negligence or intent, Austrian Power Grid AG can obligate the supplier to pay a contractual penalty and compensation.

In the event that the contractual obligations are breached repeatedly, Austrian Power Grid AG has the right to terminate the framework agreement with the supplier.

5) Can a power plant that provides aFRR also be used for other purposes?

Generation units that provide aFRR can also carry out numerous scheduled and reserve deliveries. It must, however, be ensured that the agreed aFRR range is verifiably available at all times, i.e. starting from the current operating point, a power increase or a power reduction within the agreed range and quality must be possible at any time.

6) How is the quality of the aFRR checked?

For monitoring purposes, the supplier must provide Austrian Power Grid AG with time-stamped measured values for frequency, operating point and generation of the individual generation via online transmission.

The supplier must also record these values to make sure that he can subsequently provide Austrian Power Grid AG with the values that may have not been transmitted.

More detailed specifications can be found in the Prequalification Documentation for aFRR (German only).

7) Is there an energy price for aFRR energy?

Yes, we use both a power price and an energy price for the aFRR. The bids for energy price are ranked in a Merit Order List (MOL) which is subsequently used for the call-up of bids, starting with the cheapest bid. Suppliers will receive financial compensation for keeping power for aFRR available regardless of its actual use (power price) as well as for the energy that is actually activated (energy price).

8) Are the individual bids submitted during the tender also published?

At the end of the bidding period the bids are ranked according to prices – starting with the cheapest bids – until the total volume of aFRR put out to tender is reached. Each supplier is paid the price he offered. A list with average values of accepted bids of each time frame is published on the tendering platform in the 'results' section.

9) What happens if there are not enough bids to provide the required volume of aFRR?

In the event that the number of accepted bids for aFRR power does not cover the volume put out to tender, a second tender will be opened to cover the shortfall.

If there is still a shortfall after the second invitation to tender, a further invitation to tender will be opened in a "Last Call". In this case, APG calls on potential suppliers to offer available power by e-mail or if possible, by telephone.

In the event that the volume of aFRR is still insufficient after the "Last Call", APG has the right to oblige suppliers to make available and provide the aFRR power (obligation to supply).