Schaltbau opens NExT Factory in Velden

New standard for green production: world's first direct current factory goes into operation

Munich, Aug. 31, 2023: After 2.5 years of construction, the time has finally come: Schaltbau’s new factory, the NExT Factory, will go into full operation on September 1 in Velden near Landshut. The special thing about it: As the world’s first direct current factory, the NExT Factory is a pioneering project for resource-saving and CO2-neutral production.

This climate friendliness begins on the roof of the NExT Factory, where a photovoltaic system produces around 1.6 MWh of energy per year. The electricity generated is fed directly into the plant via a direct current grid without being converted into alternating current, as is usually the case. This alone saves up to 15 percent energy annually. Combined with intelligent energy management and battery and thermal storage, the NExT Factory’s energy costs are reduced by 35 percent annually. In addition, the new production facility is completely electrified and produces CO2 neutrally.

The direct current network of the NExT Factory functions like a kind of circular economy for energy. It connects the DC-producing photovoltaic system on the roof with DC consumers and storage units within the production facility without any conversion loss. If one extrapolates how many production, storage and logistics areas there are in Germany, the potential of direct current and own direct current networks for the energy turnaround becomes clear.

Is Germany on the verge of deindustrialization in view of the high energy costs? Is the energy transition moving fast enough? These questions are driving politics, business and society. But talking alone is of no use,” says Schaltbau CEO Dr. Jürgen Brandes. “With our NExT Factory, we therefore wanted to set an example and show that cost-effective and climate-neutral production operation with direct current is possible and safe for people and machines. In this way, we are committing ourselves to economically efficient, green supply chains as well as to Germany as a production location.”

As a pioneer of electrification, the company has stood for rail safety for generations. Based on this expertise, Schaltbau now develops and manufactures forward-looking DC products for industry, energy and the mobility of tomorrow. Schaltbau contactors in particular play a central role in this and are therefore an integral part of all systems used in the NExT Factory. They ensure the smooth switching of direct current at high voltages and allow efficient power distribution within the production facility.
Schaltbau’s commitment to greater sustainability is also reflected in the EcoVadis Sustainability Rating 2023, in which Schaltbau is among the top 4 percent of compa-nies in the industry rated by EcoVadis.

The NExT Factory at a glance:

  • 100% electrified
  • 0% CO2 emissions in factory operation
  • Generated PV energy p.a. 1,600 MWh
  • Battery storage capacity 1 MWh
  • Thermal storage capacity 10 MWh
  • 15% increase in efficiency by reducing conversion losses in the DC grid
  • 35% lower annual energy costs
  • 70% degree of self-sufficiency on an annual average
  • Reduction of peak load in the logistics warehouse system by up to 85% through recuperation
  • 25% material savings during construction (e.g. copper)
  • 9,500 m² production, 5,300 m² warehouse and 2,000 m² offices
  • 60 million Euro investment costs

Get to know the NExT Factory on September 16, 2023.

Representatives of the press are cordially invited to get to know the NExT Factory on Saturday, September 16, 2023:

  • 10.00 – 17.00 Open day for all citizens with festival tent operation.
  • 12:00 – 13:00 Press tour in the presence of Peter Dreier, District Administrator of Landshut County, and Velden Mayor Ludwig Greimel
  • 13:45 – 14:30 Ceremonial speeches

Please let us know by September 12 at to let us know if we can welcome you on site

About Schaltbau:

Founded in 1929 as a developer and manufacturer of switchgear for the railroad industry in Munich, Schaltbau GmbH is today a globally active innovation and growth company for protection and safety solutions in the energy, industry, mobility and rail markets. The products and customer-specific solutions are technologically oriented towards direct current, which makes an important contribution to the energy transition.

Picture material
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Corinna Krause

Tel. +49 (0)151 120 353 22