Victorian network operator SP Ausnet has commissioned a 1MW/1MWh battery storage facility that could herald a new approach to dealing with peak demand, and avoid future costly network upgrades.
SP Ausnet is just the latest to invest in battery storage trials, but the project agreed with engineering group ABB and Korean industrial giant Samsung appears to be the largest of its type so far in Australia.
ABB and Samsung will build what they call a hybrid Grid Energy Storage and Diesel Generation System that will include the battery storage (using lithium ion batteries) and a 1MW diesel generator.
According to ABB, the plant (illustrated right) will be a pilot for future grid-integrated storage systems that could be used to supply additional capacity during high demand periods and offset or delay expensive investment upgrades of power lines.
While such systems are used in off-grid situation, this is said to be the first embedded grid-scale battery storage installation of its size in Australia, a country which is considered to be a prime market for battery storage because its networks have to cover such large distances.