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Horizon Power to trial latest in battery storage technology in Carnarvon

Horizon Power has issued a request for tender for an industrial battery which can deliver up to two megawatt hours of energy to be trialled in Carnarvon.

The aim of the tender process is for a battery to  be installed at Horizon Power’s Mungullah Power Station in the coming months where it will be used to store energy produced by the station and release that energy in ways that benefit the power system.

The battery will be used to enhance generating capacity and optimise spinning reserve. Spinning reserve is essentially spare on-line capacity which is drawn upon when demand increases quickly. For example, when a customer switches on a large piece of machinery, there is a  a peak in demand and extra generation needs to be available to provide that spinning reserve. This usually requires that generators operate at lower loads and consequently at a lower efficiency. By using energy storage to provide the spinning reserve, generation costs may be significantly reduced.

The trial is also expected to give Horizon Power more information about how it can better control renewable energy installed in Carnarvon with this additional energy storage.

“The use of the battery storage unit means that the cost of providing spinning reserve to supply electrical power for Carnarvon will be reduced as we will be using stored battery energy rather than operating gas or diesel generating sets to provide the reserve power,” Horizon Power Managing Director Frank Tudor said.

“New technology in the renewable and distributed energy space is presenting multiple opportunities and threats to energy utilities so I am delighted that Horizon Power is at the forefront of exploring these new opportunities.”

The town of Carnarvon has reached its unmanaged hosting capacity in terms of renewable energy – which means any new renewable energy needs to have generation management because of the risk it poses to tripping the power station and resulting in loss of power to all customers in the community. While this situation will not change during the trial, learnings from this trial will assist Horizon Power to increase its  renewable energy hosting target.

Fact File

  • Current capacity at the Mungullah Power station is 17 MW
  • The town of Carnarvon in Western Australia's Gascoyne region has one of the highest distributed renewable energy generation levels of all of Horizon Power's micrgrids. The average daily load of 6 MW is partially supplied by 121 individual PV installations totalling 1.3 MW in capacity.



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