Synergy flips switch on 1.1-MWh battery storage trial in W Australia
Rooftop solar array. Featured Image: Ralf Gosch/Shutterstock.com
The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) said Wednesday the 1.1-MWh residential battery storage trial supported by it is now up and running in Western Australia state’s suburb of Alkimos.
Electricity Generation & Retail Corp, trading as Synergy, worked together with Lend Lease Communities (Alkimos) Pty Ltd on the AUD-6.7-million project. ARENA contributed AUD 3.3 million (USD 2.5m/EUR 2.2m) towards the construction of the lithium ion battery storage array.
The battery system, which was installed in two shipping containers in the suburb, will store power from over 100 rooftop solar photovoltaic (PV) systems. It will help demonstrate an innovative energy retailing model, which can benefit power distributors, developers and consumers by lowering Alkimos Beach’s demand for electricity from the grid. Such installations could ultimately reduce grid-connection costs and electricity bills for the end-consumer by also making on-site installation and maintenance obsolete, according to the press release.
“If the approach becomes standard practice for new residential developments, this will increase the supply and use of renewable energy in Australia,” ARENA CEO, Ivor Frischknecht, noted. During a press conference held at the project site, Frischknecht said that he expects the cost of batteries to halve over the next couple of years and to continue decreasing even further afterwards.
The first large-scale community battery in the country will be tested through 2020.