Virtually 2 years in the past, I alerted the CleanTechnica neighborhood to Undertaking Symphony in Western Australia. It’s time for an encore, however first, a reprise. Undertaking Symphony is the brainchild of Dr Andrew Mears. Its intention is to convey power safety to the perimeters of the grid. It makes use of a distributed power administration expertise platform to make higher use of current energy-producing belongings. Dr Mears pioneered the expertise whereas working with remoted communities within the Kalahari Desert of Botswana. In accordance with modeling by Dr Gabrielle Kuiper, it might “put the duck (curve) to sleep.”
In addition to being utilized within the sparsely populated Northern Territory (the “by no means by no means”), Undertaking Symphony is being utilized in nation and concrete areas of Western Australia — Perth, to be exact.
For instance, a newly commissioned neighborhood battery might be built-in into the Undertaking Symphony pilot VPP in southeastern Perth. The Harrisdale 1.34 MW battery will retailer the surplus energy generated by the native rooftop photo voltaic programs throughout the day and be out there for entry at peak hour.
For the primary time in Western Australia’s grid, a neighborhood battery might be built-in with customer-owned batteries. It’s anticipated that this enlargement of the pilot digital energy plant (VPP) will higher handle the large quantity of photo voltaic out there throughout the day in Western Australia, and maybe even put the duck to sleep. Word that the Western Australia grid will not be linked to Australia’s extra populous jap coast.
Each South Australia and Western Australia have instigated strikes to permit market operators similar to AEMO to remotely handle rooftop photo voltaic programs as a way to handle grid stability. These programs may be switched off if an excessive amount of energy is coming into the grid. It’s anticipated that this software of final resort will solely be used for brief intervals of time if demand is critically low.
VPP’s like Undertaking Symphony linked to neighborhood and privately owned batteries ought to minimise the necessity for such measures. The VPP is backed by the Australian Renewable Power Company. It manages the ability provide of 900 clear power belongings — photo voltaic and residential batteries throughout 500 households and companies in Perth’s Southern River space. Now it has a neighborhood battery as effectively.
“Undertaking Symphony’s new neighborhood battery will present useful insights into how we are able to unlock larger financial and environmental advantages … as we proceed to remodel the power sector on our method to web zero,” mentioned state energy minister Bill Johnston.
“Within the face of a quickly altering power business, clients’ rooftop photo voltaic programs, batteries, air-con and neighborhood batteries orchestrated collectively can play an essential function in enabling the larger connection of renewables and the continued operating of a safe and steady electrical energy system.”
Within the meantime, the debates proceed as to one of the simplest ways ahead for Australia’s transition to renewables. This should be completed in such a manner that clients obtain the ability they want and the grid stays steady. Dr Mears continues to argue that extra funding must be made in software program, in order to get the perfect worth from the renewable belongings which might be already in play. With the large penetration of rooftop photo voltaic in Australia, it will be higher to discover a manner to make use of it, fairly than curtail it. Use it to place the duck to sleep.
Finally month’s Australian Power Week Convention, held in Melbourne, Dr Mears argued for a re-engineering of the grid in order that AEMO might “nail the magnitude of infrastructure required to help the power transition.” He “questioned the AEMO’s lack of consideration for distributed power sources (DER) of their 2022 Built-in System Plan (ISP).”
Australian Energy Week is the foremost annual convention and expo for the whole power provide chain, bringing collectively turbines, networks, retailers, finish customers, and authorities to assist form the power transition.
AEMO’s CEO Daniel Westerman conceded that utility-sized renewables usually are not being constructed quick sufficient and that rooftop photo voltaic might present as much as 25% of grid wants. Dr Mears referred to “modelling undertaken by ITP Renewables and commissioned and revealed by Gabrielle Kuiper the place software program and distributed networks are used as an infrastructure different to new poles and wires.”
This modelling discovered that “rooftop photo voltaic plus battery buying and selling reduces the 4-8 pm wholesale market night peak by a powerful 67–92%. Along with this, the place native ‘buying and selling’ is made ‘frictionless’, family batteries scale back the common summer season community peak by 64%.” These flows can be finest facilitated by software program fairly than constructing extra transmission strains.
Dr Mears’ SwitchDin has proposed a Nationwide Digital Energy Plant (VPP) Technique to the federal authorities which might allow households and companies to entry the untapped worth of their energy-producing belongings. The plan is to take the symphony nationwide.
Dr Gabrielle Kuiper calls this placing the duck curve to sleep – see the graph here:
ITP renewables modelled what it will be like for the electrical energy system once we attain 100% DER. “We all know that ultimately each rooftop within the Nationwide Electrical energy Market (NEM) that may have photo voltaic, will. We all know photo voltaic households will probably have batteries, and probably will have the ability to commerce electrical energy simply with their neighbours. They can even be all electrical, with versatile demand within the type of managed masses capable of be time-shifted, and have electrical automobiles (EVs) that may cost within the daytime or in a single day. We’ll even have neighborhood batteries in some kind.
“Probably the most vital discovering from this contemporary strategy is that rooftop photo voltaic plus batteries will put the well-known solar-created supply-demand duck curve to sleep.”
A sleeping duck curve means no extreme photo voltaic provide in the course of the day (thus no curtailment) and energy out there for the night, eliminating peak hour. “Throughout all of the modelled situations, rooftop photo voltaic plus battery buying and selling reduces the 4–8pm wholesale market night peak by 67–92%.” It will have vital impacts on the revenues of conventional turbines. Gasoline peakers will not be wanted.
“How a lot and how briskly the duck sleeps will rely lots on the quantity and dimension of batteries and EVs per family and the rules for buying and selling this capability. The extra batteries and versatile load within the system, the larger the chance of a sleeping duck — that’s, a flatter grid demand/provide curve.”
As one among our readers commented on my first article: “Superb. Norway is the proving floor for an EV future, and Australia will present the world how clear, decentralised energy is the long run.” However it’s a powerful time for resolution makers. Time to tune the orchestra and put the duck to sleep.
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