South Australia has announced the first winners of its “next wave” energy storage tender, with four different projects to get a total of $8 million funding through the $150 million Renewable Technology Fund.
The projects include lithium ion battery storage, flow batteries, hydrogen fuel cells, and thermal storage, and will be built in a range of facilities from remote mines to manufacturing plants and distribution centres.
The announcement comes ahead of the formal opening on Friday of the Tesla big battery at the Hornsdale wind farm, a 100MW/129MWh facility which has been partially funded through the RTF, established as part of the state government’s response to the blackout last September.
The four projects chosen from more than 80 different proposals are:
Planet Ark Power – Schneider Electric (solar PV and battery)
A $1.95 million grant will be made towards a $13.9 million solar PV and battery project at a major distribution centre in Adelaide’s North. The project includes a micro-grid management system optimising 5.7MW of solar PV coupled with 2.9MWh of battery storage and integrates with SA Power Networks’ Utility Distribution Management System, aims to demonstrate the “technology” of the future of the grid.
UniSA (hydrogen fuel cell)
A $3.6 million grant towards a $7.7 million project at the Mawson Lakes campus that includes hydrogen production and a 50kW hydrogen fuel cell, a 0.45MWh flow battery, 3.2 million litres of chilled water storage and 1.8MW of ground and roof mounted solar PV. The project will cut campus emissions by 35 per cent and reduce peak demand on the grid and is being deigned as a testing facility.
1414 Degrees (thermal storage)
A $1.6 million grant towards a $3.2 million thermal storage project at the Glenelg Waste Water Treatment Plant using a home grown technology being commercialised by 1414 Degrees. The project will include a 0.25MW/10MWh thermal energy storage device that holds heat generated from the combustion of biogas produced on site.
A $1 million grant towards a $2.69 million modular and relocatable solar PV and battery storage project at the Heathgate Resources Beverley mine. The project will pair 1MW of solar PV with a 1MW/0.5MWh battery, and integrate with the existing on-site gas power plant, with a view of creating a fleet of such facilities across the country.
“South Australia is a global leader in renewable energy and the world is paying attention,” Premier Jay Weatherill said in a statement.
“The incredible response to the Renewable Technology Fund and the diverse range of technologies represented in this round of funding shows how much potential exists in this industry of the future.
Energy Minister Tom Koutsantonis said the RTF projects – along with the Tesla big battery and the SolarReserve (solar tower and molten salt storage projects) was making South Australia a global hub for energy storage.
“This funding leverages significant investment in four cutting edge projects that will showcase new technologies, create jobs and reduce demand on the grid.”
Giles Parkinson is founder and editor of RenewEconomy.com.au, and is also the founder of OneStepOffTheGrid.com.au and founder/editor of www.TheDriven.io. Giles has been a journalist for 35 years and is a former business and deputy editor of the Australian Financial Review.