|15 December 2016|

Australia

Adelaide is trialling the world’s largest virtual power plant concept, which could eventually be rolled out across Australia.

Houses in the city have begun receiving  the first battery installations as part of AGL Energy Limited’s (AGL) world leading Virtual Power Plant trial.

Supported by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), the batteries can talk to each other via a cloud based platform using smart controls. When finished, the connected system will be able to operate as a 5 MW solar plant, powering hundreds of local homes.

ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said: “ARENA is accelerating Australia’s shift to a future where energy is produced and used in smarter and more effective ways.

“In this case, storing and delivering energy at individual houses means power is available very close to where it’s being used, and that has a range of benefits.

“Instead of getting electricity from large power stations outside cities that’s fed across long power lines, sometimes from different states, households can now use power from the sun, captured and stored from their own roofs.

“Central cloud based controls allow AGL to operate these systems like a typical power station, with even faster response times –  discharging electricity to consumers’ homes during periods of high demand and supporting the grid during periods of instability.

“Ultimately, this means virtual power plants could be rolled out across the country to provide reliable, affordable renewable energy to Australians.”