Australia wants to find more effective ways to use weather forecasting for predicting the power output of solar and wind projects.

The Government has pledged $10 million in support to allow the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) to lead the development of innovations which can achieve more accurate forecasting, to reduce prices and make the grid more stable.

“AEMO is responsible for balancing supply and demand in the National Electricity Market and, as part of this, they centrally predict the expected generation of all wind and solar farms in five minute intervals. Their central forecasts, however, could benefit from greater consideration of local factors in the immediate area of the generator, such as weather, geography and operational conditions,” said Josh Frydenberg, the Australian Minister for the Environment and Energy.

He added: “If successful, this trial could see wind and solar farms providing their own ‘self-forecasts’ that take into account exactly what’s happened when and where they are located – for example, if a cloud passes over a solar farm or if the wind changes.”