Australia’s first commercial urban large-scale utility 5MWh battery will form an essential part of electricity infrastructure that will supply north Canberra suburbs of Holt and Ginninderry.
The battery and solar array project represents the first installation in Australia to supplement an urban power supply on a large scale and the first phase in a plan to provide Canberra with reliable renewable energy to power residents’ homes.
The project will be delivered by Elvin Group, and according to the company’s Renewables Managing Director, Sam Blackadder, the 5MWh battery will have the capacity to service the average energy needs of approximately 5,400 households for an hour, and will also stand ready to pump power into the grid in the event of a shortfall, making sharing between ACT and NSW more efficient.
“We are excited by this project, not only is it a major ‘in-front of meter’ installation in Australia but it is the first stage of a nationwide move to renewable energy and a wholesale reduction in our carbon emissions,” he said.
“The aim of this installation is to show the community how renewable resources are a viable solution to meet Canberra’s needs for stable, reliable, consistent and environmentally positive energy.”
As the project is expanded, batteries can be placed at strategic sites around the grid, to inject bursts of power to fill gaps in dispatchable supply through a virtual power plant (VPP), meaning that the nation’s existing power supply can be used more efficiently to serve greater demand.
Mr Blackadder said the growth of Canberra’s population and more frequent extreme weather events have increased the demands on reliable power supply throughout the ACT.
“Over the past two years, the impact of storm events, hot summers and the devastating bushfires placed increased risk on the Territory’s power supply. Networks are looking for non-network options that help avoid extended brownouts/blackouts and fluctuating voltage” he shared.
“We have been developing this project for a large scale battery installation to support electrical grid infrastructure in potentially constrained parts of Canberra’s network via Frequency Control and Ancillary Services (FCAS).”
The FCAS is a process used by the energy market operators to maintain the frequency of the system within the normal operating band it delivers a fast injection of energy, or fast reduction of energy, to maintain supply and demand.
CEO of Elvin Group, Craig Elvin, added: “As part of the Holt project we will also be installing a 500 kW ground-based solar array which will help ensure the operating ability of the battery during early afternoon evening peak loads.”
The Holt battery energy storage system (BESS) is due for completion in May 2021.
Technical specifications for Holt 5MWH BESS
- Site location: 151 Drake Brockman Drive
- Battery details: 2.5MW / 5MWH Tesla Megapack BESS
- 2 x 1.25 MW Tesla Megapacks
- Includes Elvin Group installing a new distribution substation and related to connect to Evoenergy’s 11kv network.
- Solar details: Proposed 500KW ground-mounted solar farm
- Planned augmentation for locally generated green hydrogen converted to electricity storage for grid support
- Utility Scale battery connection into National Energy Market for FCAS grid support
- Elvin Group has developed and co-ordinated all the works for this installation