WA Government Introduces New Solar Battery Project
Battery technology continues to develop at an incredibly fast rate. There are many things to look forward to in the coming years. But for now, using a battery in conjunction with your solar system can power your home and help reduce your bill.
New Battery Project Announced
As part of the initiative to strengthen the state’s power system, the Western Australian Government plans to build the second-biggest battery in the entire country. Think of the size of 22 tennis courts side by side. The project will result in a 100-megawatt battery, estimated to bear the capacity to power approximately 160,000 homes in WA for two hours. At the same time, it will create 100 jobs.
If it is implemented, the project will provide support for renewable energy sources, particularly through the use of solar power in the state. Aside from that, it could be beneficial for the grid since it could assist in its long-term sustainability.
Premier Mark McGowan took to Twitter and said that batteries are an integral part of WA’s future energy production. One of the most efficient ways to handle the challenge is through the installation of a huge battery for the grid. It’s why the Government wants to take advantage of the opportunity to develop a big battery in cooperation with Synergy, WA’s leading gas and electricity provider.
The project has received initial funding of $15 million from the Commonwealth. Meanwhile, the Energy Minister and Energy Policy WA currently seek additional financing.
Addressing the Duck Curve and Complementing Western Power’s Shared Battery Storage
The decommissioned Kwinana Power Station, a fossil fuel plant, will house this large battery. The Government is confident that it will help solve the “duck curve” issue where there are high levels of solar and renewable power sources on the grid during the day. This particular problem results in high peak load at night, particularly during mid to late evenings.
Solar generation is high during the middle of the day. During peak times, consumers can use the energy. With the battery constructed, it will absorb the surplus energy that could otherwise go to waste.
For quite some time now, battery storage has proven to be efficient and versatile. It’s why there are a handful of initiatives underway to support solar and renewables. They are among the ways that show the importance that WA places on solar energy.
An example is the community battery project from Western Power and Synergy. These two organisations have partnered to create three batteries that use Tesla technology. The batteries are called PowerBank collectively, another innovation that is only available in Australia. The purpose of this project is to connect solar battery storage to the grid. It also provides the locals with an option to acquire retail storage.
Together with the upcoming rollout of shared batteries, the new battery could give additional support and further improve the quality of electrical power that homes and businesses can use.
Meanwhile, this new battery project, on its own, could help increase the main grid of the state, which is the South West Interconnected Systems (SWIS).
How the New Battery Will Operate
The project’s primary objective is to be integrated with solar energy while improving the security of the grid for future generations. The battery will be charged automatically during the day. With Western Australia’s mostly warm days, charging it up will be easy and successful. It’s sunny almost every day in many parts of the state, so there is plenty of energy to take full advantage of. Later in the afternoon or at night, consumers will use and discharge the energy to power their homes.
Synergy is responsible for the operations of the battery. Once usage kickstarts, it will aid in reducing the generation plants’ wear and tear. Many of these plants have been fluctuating recently because they were not designed with renewable energy in mind. With the growing number of renewables in certain areas, these existing plants may malfunction or deteriorate. But this issue can be avoided with the big battery installed and running.
Why Now is the Best Time to Consider Solar
Battery storage systems can store electrical energy produced by your solar system, which you can use later. With the energy sector in Western Australia and the rest of the country experiencing a speedy transformation, there is no better time to go solar than now. Currently, one in three households has solar panels installed on their rooftops. According to research, this number could quickly increase by 50 per cent more by 2030.
Many homeowners do not know that there is growing pressure on the state’s electricity system. This pressure will not cease because everyone needs electricity to run appliances in their houses. Businesses are also multiplying everywhere in Western Australia. As a result, there is a tremendous need for electric power, which only continues to grow.
Inaction and even waiting for the next few years to get solar could lead to power loss and blackouts in the future. The Government acknowledges this fact and is continually exerting effort to educate and encourage the citizens to go solar.
Batteries can support the electricity system in the state. They can also help reduce issues with market demand. For example, low load problems are quite common in residential areas. Customer solar generation becomes incredibly high, but the demand for power is lower than expected. Such a predicament can be addressed with a battery in place.
Before we all get so excited, this battery project is still not guaranteed. The Government is still waiting for business proposals to consider. The final decision may be announced before the year ends. Despite the uncertainty surrounding this project, the benefits of going solar remains solid.
Without a doubt, this battery project can be beneficial for both the economy and the environment. For consumers, it is more efficient than ever to have solar installed. The available battery storage allows the system to be configured to generate backup electricity when there is no access to sunshine, such as during the night. Consumers can choose to skip buying their own battery storage, so it is even more affordable than ever to have solar!