Zwulferhorn St. Gilgen - Installation Of First Energy Self Sufficient Gondola

The world's first energy self-sufficient cable car leads to the local mountain in St. Gilgen on Lake Wolfgangsee.

The Zwölferhorn cable car, which has been shining in new splendor since autumn 2020, takes its guests to the naturally beautiful “Zwölferhörndl”. The popular yellow and red gondolas will soon be powered by the pure power of nature, as the Zwölferhorn cable car will be the first cable car in the world to operate independently of energy using solar power.

With the project, those responsible are setting a groundbreaking example of sustainability and environmental protection in cable car operations. In addition to the installations already made on the roof of the valley station, this makes it possible to set up a photovoltaic system on the southern slope of the mountain station. With the system's impressive output of 804 kWp, more than 90% of the cable car's annual energy requirements can be covered by solar power. “We are very pleased to be setting a positive example for our industry and providing evidence that cable car operation is possible in an energy-self-sufficient manner and can contribute to reducing CO2,” says managing director Dkfm. Mario Stedile-Foradori is convincing.

In the main season from April to September, the Zwölferhorn cable car runs completely energy-autonomously thanks to the interaction of the PV system and battery storage system. If you look at the entire year, the energy generated by the planned photovoltaic system far exceeds your own needs. While the cable car recorded electricity consumption of 629,100 kWh in 2023, the new system produces 930,900 kWh. A third of the electricity is excess production that can be fed into local public networks. “This pioneering project in St. Gilgen, which makes the Zwölferhorn cable car largely energy self-sufficient, is unique in the cable car industry and further evidence of how sustainable tourism development can work and have a regional impact. We are proud to have such far-sighted customers as partners and that our D-Line gondola lift to the Zwölferhorn is part of this further development,” says Jürgen Pichler, Marketing Manager of the Doppelmayr Group.

The battery storage system for excess solar power also serves to relieve the load on the power grid and has a storage volume of 550 kWh. Up to 100,000 kWh of electrical energy can be stored per year, thereby further optimizing the cable car's electricity consumption. By switching to renewable energy, the Zwölferhorn cable car will save almost 211 tons of CO2 annually, which roughly corresponds to a cleaning effect of 3,900 newly planted trees per year.

With the implementation of the photovoltaic system, the Zwölferhorn cable car turns from an energy consumer into an energy power plant. The plan is to use the excess electricity production to form an energy community with the municipality of St. Gilgen. Mayor Otto Kloiber sees the relief of the local networks as a major advantage, as well as for St. Gilgen as a progressive tourism destination. “I am proud to be able to boast such an impressive, future-oriented project in our St. Gilgen.

The energy-autonomous cable car in our town is not only a benefit for the environment, but also for our guests, who are offered a sustainable and environmentally friendly experience at the same time," says Kloiber about the innovation on the Zwölferhorn. Himself a pioneer and expert in the field of renewable energy, Kloiber has already implemented several projects for the region.

The professional implementation of the groundbreaking project is carried out by the companies SYNECOTEC, a member of the Elevion Group with more than 20 years of experience in the areas of renewable energy and energy efficiency, and the specialist foundation engineering company HTB. They are supported by the company Klenkhart und Partner, which supports the project in all nature conservation matters and places particular emphasis on treating nature with care.

An important step towards sustainability is being taken with the construction of the photovoltaic system for St. Gilgen, the Zwölferhorn cable car and the entire cable car industry. “With our project, we show that it is possible to use environmentally friendly technologies in the cable car industry and thus make a contribution to climate protection. Our energy-autonomous cable car is a showcase project that will hopefully inspire many other companies to take similar measures,” says Zwölferhorn managing director Arthur Moser.

PV system on the mountain

  • Installed power: 803.88 kWp
  • Annual energy production: 835,900 kWh
  • Bottleneck power: 700 kW
  • Modules: 1,848
  • 6 tables: each with 308 modules
  • CO2 emissions saved: 190 t
  • Equivalent trees planted: 3,500
  • Total area: 3,650 m²
  • Investment costs: €2.1 million.
  • Battery on the mountain
  • Power: 200 kW
  • Storage volume: 550 kWh
  • PV system valley station
  • Installed power: 74.62 kWp
  • Annual energy production: 95,000 kWh
  • Bottleneck power: 66 kW
  • Modules: 196
  • CO2 emissions saved: 21 t
  • Equivalent trees planted: 400
  • Battery valley station
  • Power: 15 kW
  • Storage volume: 45 kWh
  • PV systems overall
  • Installed power: 879 kWp
  • Bottleneck power: 766 kW
  • Modules: 2,044
  • Electricity consumption Zwölferhorn cable car 2023: 629,100 kWh
  • Quantity produced with PV systems: 930,900 kWh
  • Overproduction: 301,800 kWh
  • Direct self-sufficiency level (PV systems + battery systems): over 90%
  • 100% self-sufficient operation, from April to September, via PV and battery
  • massive relief of the local power grid
  • Equivalent trees planted: 3,900
  • Tonnes CO2 emissions saved: 211

DATA AND FACTS about the Zwölferhorn cable car, which is powered by solar power

  • 8-seater gondola lift (8-MGD Zwölferhorn cable car)
  • Manufacturer: Doppelmayr
  • Capacity: 655 people/h
  • Total number of vehicles (gondolas): 28 pieces
  • Maximum travel speed: 5 m/s
  • Travel time at maximum travel speed: 10.48 min.
  • Number of supports: 8
  • Highest support: 55.8 m (support 3)
  • Valley station: 566.70 m
  • Mountain station: 1,475.31 m
  • Elevation difference: 908.61 m
  • Oblique length: 2,746.66 m
  • Drive (mountain station): 649 kW power
  • Weight of the conveyor rope: approx. 52 tons
  • Rope diameter: 50mm
  • Rope length: approx. 5,500 m
  • Year of construction: 2020
  • Capacity: 655 people per hour
  • Altitude mountain station 1,475
  • Year of construction of the 8-MGD: 2020


  • Founded: 1955
  • New construction of the Zwölferhorn cable car: 2020
  • Employees: 21
  • Sales: €3.5 million
  • First admissions (guests): 130,000/year

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