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Horizon Power signs contract for technology solution to manage distributed energy resources

Horizon Power has signed a contract with PXiSE Energy Solutions, LLC to provide the software for a Distributed Energy Resources Management System (DERMS) that is intended to provide the platform to improve the efficiency and management of its vast electricity systems servicing remote and regional Western Australia.

Horizon Power Acting Chief Executive Officer, Mike Houlahan says the DERMS platform, which will initially be trialed in the Onslow microgrid, supports the organisation’s strategy and vision to become a leader in advanced microgrids.

“DERMS will provide the platform for our systems to be able to support greater renewable and distributed energy resources in the future, thereby providing a cleaner and sustainable energy solution for our customers and for Western Australia,” Mr Houlahan said.

DERMS is a software solution that will monitor and manage thousands of grid connected assets, ranging from power stations to solar panels, using artificial intelligence to balance and orchestrate the energy generation and storage mix in a coordinated system.

The solution will provide high visibility for Horizon Power to access real-time insights and optimise the system.

Horizon Power General Manager of Advanced Microgrid Developments, Terry Mohn, said this was the first time this type of highly advanced technology would be integrated into an electricity network in Australia, and it could help to create a safer, more stable and more efficient network in the future.

“As the amount of renewable energy connected to electricity networks continues to increase, utilities worldwide are facing new operational challenges,” Mr Mohn said.

“By investing in intelligent systems that can automatically manage assets, detect and mitigate power fluctuations, Horizon Power is working hard to address these challenges in a way that secures power quality and reliability for all.”

The PXiSE Energy Solutions DERMS software provides a mature product that can be configured to meet the diverse requirements of Horizon Power’s microgrids.

This technology solution is expected to provide Horizon Power with the platform from which it can increase access to renewable energy in the future, by managing all distributed energy resource assets connected to the utility’s networks in a coordinated way, without adversely impacting power quality and reliability.

Horizon Power will start to use the new technology throughout 2019 as part of its renewable energy pilot project in the town of Onslow.

Onslow customers will be invited to participate in the platform on an opt-in basis, and this trial will enable the consumer implications to be carefully considered before any broader rollout of the platform.

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About Horizon Power

Horizon Power is a Government Trading Enterprise which generates, distributes and retails electricity to more than 48,000 connections in regional and remote Western Australia.

The utility’s service area is vast – approximately 2.3 million square kilometres – which means Horizon Power services the biggest area with the least amount of customers in the world. For every 50 square kilometres of terrain, there is just one customer.

About PXiSE Energy Solutions

PXiSE Energy Solutions LLC., headquartered in San Diego, is an indirect subsidiary of Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE) and Mitsui & Co., Ltd. Formed in 2016, the company develops, operates and markets ACT, a next-generation software power-grid management technology for renewable energy developers and operators, grid operators, commercial property owners and microgrids.

PXiSE Energy Solutions has partnered with Australia-based Green Technology Solutions (GTS) to provide technical support during the project.

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