Solar & Storage SUMMER 2016
For more information see page 15 or visit www.solarexpo.com.au
EXHIBITION & CONFERENCE WEDNESDAY MAY 3 AND THURSDAY MAY 4, 2017 MELBOURNE CONVENTION & EXHIBITION CENTRE
• Building energy security • B lockchain software: the shape of things to come?
THE OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE
• CEFC projects of substance
AUSTRALIAN SOLAR COUNCIL &
• Storage innovation and inspiration
THE ENERGY STORAGE COUNCIL
• Master Installers
More than half your yearly diesel fits in this box. Diesel delivered to site is pricey stuff. After 18 months on a diesel-powered site, our UltraFlex energy storage solution (like the one above) achieved a 55% fuel reduction for our industrial client. Weâ€™ve also reduced generator run-time on a diesel/renewable microgrid from hours per day down to pretty close to nothing. (The generator ran for half an hour last quarter).
Our UltraBatteryÂŽ products are Australiandesigned technology with energy, grunt and smarts. We can use them to make astounding improvements to industrial diesel efficiency. What could you save with an UltraFlex on your site?
Australian Solar Council Foreword by CEO and guest Anna Skarbek Solar on Show 2017
Contents SUMMER 2016
Master Installer program and Certified Storage training 48 Smart Energy Roadshows
Market Dynamics News and views
Infographic: industry views
Special Features Energy security
CEFC matters of substance
ARENA’s big solar dozen
Blockchain software: the shape of things to come?
Around the industry Trina’s 30 degrees of difficulty
A solar volunteer in Cambodia
Lady Elliott island’s energy makeover
Hydrogen storage research
Front cover: Yulara Project. Photo courtesy of Jinko
Products and services Fronius case study
Pilecom solar post installation
Storage innovation and applications
Battery finder: unique industry resource
Ecoult’s UltraBattery at an eco resort
STORAGE NEWS: GCL, Enphase, Redflow and Sonnen deliver the goods; SolaX, Fusion with Aquion, TrinaBEST and Red Energy in action Redback’s multi million dollar partnership
S&C powers the outback
SolarEdge and DC currents
EV numbers gear up
ABB: the brains of a microgrid
SOLAR & STORAGE is published by the AUSTRALIAN SOLAR COUNCIL. ABN 32 006 824 148 www.solar.org.au Subscription and membership enquiries contact Anna Washington, Phone: 0409 802 707, firstname.lastname@example.org
AUSTRALIAN SOLAR COUNCIL CEO John Grimes PO Box 231, Mawson ACT 2607 email@example.com Phone: 1300 768 204 Solar & Storage ISSN 2206-1673
Solar & Storage and Storage Developments advertising enquiries contact: Brett Thompson, Sales Manager | Phone: 0402 181 250 | firstname.lastname@example.org
SOLAR & STORAGE EDITOR: Nicola Card email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org CONTRIBUTORS: CEFC, Sean Frost, Maja Gajic, Lior Handelsman, Peter Libretto, Nicholas Loeve, Dennis Rutzou, Anna Skarbek, Penny Parle, Wayne Smith. Heartfelt thanks to Dr McGaw for his invaluable contribution. DESIGN AND PRODUCTION: Mitzi Mann
Solar & Storage (Solar Progress) was first published in 1980. The magazine aims to provide readers with an in-depth review of technologies, policies and progress towards a society which sources energy from the sun rather than fossil fuels. Except where specifically stated, the opinions and material published in this magazine are not necessarily those of the Australian Solar Council. Although every effort is made to check the authenticity and accuracy of articles, neither the Solar Council nor the editors are responsible for any inaccuracy. Solar & Storage is published quarterly. www.solar.org.au
John Grimes Chief Executive, Australian Solar Council and Energy Storage Council THE MASSIVE STORM that ripped through South Australia in September knocked down 23 transmission towers, turned out the lights and unleashed a torrent of unwarranted attacks on renewable energy. Many long-time critics of solar and renewable energy were keen to use the South Australian blackout to prosecute the case against renewables, arguing for yet another review of the Renewable Energy Target and calling on State Governments to abandon their own renewable energy programs. State and Territory Governments were absolutely right to dig in and maintain commitments to ambitious, vital and popular renewables targets. On 15 October, Canberra residents overwhelmingly endorsed the ACT Government’s commitment to 100 per cent renewable energy by 2020 with the re-election of the Labor-Greens coalition government.
The Queensland Government recently delivered on a major election commitment, with the draft report of an Expert Panel looking at 50 per cent renewables by 2030 determining it was affordable, ambitious, and achievable, but also necessary to meet Queensland’s national and international climate change obligations. Residential, commercial and large-scale solar and energy storage will be fundamental to achieving 50 per cent renewables by 2030. The Sunshine State will become the Solar State! The solar industry owes State and Territory Governments a debt of gratitude. The war on renewables by the Abbott Government in late 2013 saw investment grind to a halt. The ACT Government was for a long time the only game in town, with its reverse auctions stimulating investment in big solar and wind projects. The only way we’ll achieve the national Renewable Energy Target by 2020 is through ambitious State targets and programs, including in Victoria, Queensland and the ACT. The New South Wales and Western Australian Governments need to lift their ambitions significantly. The attacks on State renewable energy targets that sprung from the South Australian storms were a classic case of blaming future policies for the problems of the past. We need an energy grid for the 21st century, one that is smart, reliable, flexible and sustainable. A smart 21st century energy system puts consumers at the centre. It helps tackle climate change and is built to withstand the impacts of climate change. The Australian Government must put aside its anti-renewables ideology and work with State and Territory Governments to build the smart energy system of the future.
Guest Foreword THE RECENT STATEWIDE BLACKOUT in South Australia Yet, despite this natural synergy, the two have never sparked a national debate about the use of renewable been systematically linked at either a national or energy and its impact on energy security. While state level. the blackout was caused by fierce storms disabling For example, as a result of federal and state multiple transmission power lines, South Australia’s incentive schemes, some 1.5 million Australian high reliance on renewable energy was criticised. homes now have solar panels. At the same time However, ClimateWorks Australia research shows there are separate state-based incentive schemes we will need at least 50 per cent renewable electricity for household energy efficiency. It makes sense to by 2030 if we are to decarbonise the electricity sector link these programs. If solar panel installers could in the smoothest, least cost way to achieve net zero also provide household energy efficiency audits, emissions by mid-century. householders could get a bigger bang for their buck Renewable energy is part of the solution to climate and further reduce demand on the grid. change and we need to find ways to better integrate it. Household battery storage technology provides An important measure is to ensure renewable energy the next key opportunity to link installation is linked with other market solutions so they can work incentives with renewable energy and energy together to create cleaner and cheaper energy. In efficiency, and we should be planning now to ensure particular, renewable energy policy and programs need it happens. ClimateWorks CEO Anna Skarbek to be combined with measures to promote energy Improving energy efficiency across the economy efficiency. also means we will need less investment in new renewable energy There is a natural synergy between renewable energy and energy infrastructure to replace the carbon-intensive ones. This helps to lower the efficiency, with the American Council for an Energy Efficiency Economy overall network costs and can protect households against rising power saying they go together like ‘peanut butter and jelly’. Energy efficiency bills. can reduce emissions but it cannot provide clean power while renewable A more integrated approach to renewable power and energy efficiency energy needs energy efficiency to achieve its full potential at lowest cost. will be a positive step to delivering meaningful action on climate change.
2 SUMMER 2016
TRIO-50.0-TL. You won’t believe it’s a string inverter.
The TRIO-50.0 combines the performance and price advantage of a central inverter with the flexibility and ease of installation of a string inverter. With its three-phase, transformerless technology, modular concept and installation versatility, the TRIO-50.0 was designed specifically for commercial and utility-scale decentralized installations. So if you’re looking for the flexibility of a string inverter with the power and cost advantage of a central inverter look no further. The TRIO-50.0-TL. For more information: www.abb.com/solarinverters
Local and global NEWS IEA raises five-year renewable growth forecast
Oliver Yates leaves CEFC on a high note
The latest International Energy Agency Medium-Term Renewable Market Report sees renewables growing 13 per cent more between 2015 and 2021 than it did in last year’s forecast, due mostly to stronger policy backing in key countries the US, China, India and Mexico. Renewables surpassed coal in 2015 to become the largest source of installed power capacity in the world. Over the forecast period, costs are expected to drop by a quarter in solar PV. The year 2015 marked a turning point for renewables, led by wind and solar, which represented more than half the new power capacity around the world, reaching a record 153 GW, 15 per cent more than 2014. Solar PV additions came in at a mighty 49 GW. About half a million solar panels were installed every day around the world last year.
Oliver Yates is the well-known CEO of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, having led the organisation since its creation in 2013 and steered investment in renewable energy, energy efficiency and low emissions projects around Australia. Within three years the CEFC’s investment commitment has reached $2.3 billion, contributing to projects with a total value of $5.7 billion. Yates recently announced his resignation but says there’s “still plenty more to do”, given the RET for large-scale generation of 33,000 GWh in 2020 means about 23.5 per cent of Australia’s electricity generation in 2020 will be from renewable sources. “We’re seeing increased take up of clean energy worldwide and we’re looking to make sure Australia is in a position to benefit through innovation as well as through easier access to finance for existing technologies,” he said. Read more about the CEFC’s role using finance to transform clean energy investment on page 12.
Graphic courtesy IEA
Solar & Storage is printed by Printgraphics whose green credentials include:
4 SUMMER 2016
The 2016 edition of The Climate Institute’s long running benchmark Climate of the Nation research reveals that support for renewables continues to grow and a “surprising” number of Australians expect federal leadership in taking action on climate change. Turning to CoP 21: • 67% surveyed agree Australia should enact a serious policy plan to deliver the commitment made in Paris to achieving net zero emissions • 57% do not agree with the idea that Australia should wait for other countries before we strengthen our post-2020 emissions reduction targets • 73% say economic benefits, such as new jobs and investment in clean energy, will flow from leadership on climate action and energy policy, and • 65% feel Australia should be a world leader in finding solutions to climate change.
Local and global NEWS Historic day for Australian solar Twelve new large-scale plants have gained support, which together will treble Australia’s large-scale PV capacity by the end of 2017. ARENA’s Ivor Frischknecht’s said “The announcement is a very big deal … ARENA is working to accelerate these projects which underpin our transition to a cheaper, cleaner, sustainable energy future.“ Several of the developers are seeking debt financing for projects through the CEFC’s complementary large-scale solar program. CEFC’s Oliver Yates described this as a significant milestone in Australia’s growing large-scale solar industry, saying “We are seeing positive signs of large-scale solar gaining cost parity and even trending below the costs of other forms of new-build energy generation, with some proposals having a projected levelised cost of energy below $100 per megawatt hour.” Did you know that back in 2012 when ARENA was established, Australia boasted just one large-scale solar PV farm, the 10 MW Greenough River Solar Farm, near Geraldton in Western Australia? Since then, ARENA has supported the large but expensive Nyngan, Broken Hill and Moree solar farms. Turn to page 14 for more on ARENA’s big twelve projects.
Manildra Solar Farm aerial rendering
ANU’s RE research
Professor Ken Baldwin
An $8 million partnership between the ACT government and ANU paves the way for an international research program into improved means of storing renewable energy in a bid to integrate battery material technology with electricity network storage. The ANU’s Professor Ken Baldwin commented on the growing importance of battery storage and its integration in addressing intermittency in renewable energy supply.
AGL installs largest solar PV system at an Australian winery AGL and Yalumba Family Vignerons are installing the largest solar PV system at an Australian winery. The 1.4 MW solar PV system at Yalumba’s iconic Barossa Valley winery is also one of the largest commercial installations in South Australia. AGL CEO Andy Vesey (pictured standing on the right) said the project “aligns with AGL’s commitment in our Greenhouse Gas Policy to increase renewable energy generation. Together we are helping Australia meet its commitment to the two degree goal and transition to a carbon constrained future.” Vesey recently called on State and Federal Governments to collaborate to deliver an orderly transition of the Australian energy system, saying “We have ageing energy infrastructure, with around three quarters of Australia’s gas and coal fired generation assets well beyond their design life, and we have a carbon challenge commitment. “An ageing system is a fragile one [and] as new generation is built, it needs to be fit for the purpose of complementing more renewables, as Australia progressively transitions its energy system.”
6 SUMMER 2016
www.solarjuice.com.au • www.solaroutlet.com.au • 02 9725 1111
Storm of controversy September blackouts in South Australia caused by fierce storms put the spotlight on power supplies, and the state’s high reliance on renewable energy supplies came under scrutiny. In the intervening weeks the tide has turned and the benefits of energy storage appear to have taken centre stage. Was it the storm we had to have to clear the air of misconceptions? AMONG THE MORE ASTONISHING early responses to the storms that swept across South Australia and caused widespread blackouts in late September was that of the Prime Minister, with his liberal use of the words “unrealistic”, “reckless” and “aggressive” in the context of state renewable energy targets. A gut reaction to a serious event that was seriously misunderstood. Federal Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg likewise pointed the finger at renewable energy. His argument: if South Australia had more coal fired power, outages would have been less drastic. The flaws in his argument: • The storm was caused by an extreme weather event, a consequence of global warming caused in part by the burning of fossil fuels. • More than 23 power transmission towers keeled over in the storm, disrupting continuity of energy supplies regardless of their source of generation. Minister Frydenberg hastily called a meeting of State Energy Ministers to caution them over their “unrealistic and reckless” aspirations for renewable energy targets. It turned out the Ministers remained steadfast in their support for renewables.
Digging in their heels Victoria’s Energy Minister Lily D’Ambrosio packed a punch stating Victoria would proceed as planned with its reverse auctions during 2017 to meet the existing renewable energy target and beyond that the state target of 40 per cent by 2025. She also issued a reminder about the lack of a national RET beyond 2020 which is now just a short three-and-a-bit years away. Enlightened WA Liberal government Energy Minister Mike Nahan declared the “profound impact“ of battery storage on future energy
“The government says its most important job is to keep the lights on and it’s becoming increasingly clear that household and business battery storage will play a crucial role in that.” 8 SUMMER 2016
markets, and is actively considering means of incentivising storage. Three cheers! Recently retired ACT Energy Minister Simon Corbell, a patron of the Solar Council, reaffirmed the territory’s ambitions for a 100 per cent renewable energy target by 2020. As a collective the State Ministers did however agree to an independent inquiry into the rules governing Australia’s energy markets. The inquiry is led by Chief Scientist Dr Alan Finkel, who last year told Solar & Storage about his big picture vision for energy storage as a solution to “our high dependence on fossil fuels” saying “we need to worry about our carbon dioxide levels and bring [energy] from zero emissions resources.” In a show of prescience he then referred to the possibility of subsidies for storage. Clearly a man ahead of his time. “My vision is for a country, society, a world where we don’t use any coal, oil, natural gas … with enough storage, we could [have zero emissions electricity] with solar and wind,” Finkel said in late 2016.
Related measures Following its investigation into the South Australia wide blackouts energy market operator AEMO confirmed renewable generation was not to blame. Software glitches and the loss of grid frequency caused by several interconnectors disabled by the severe storm and the closure of wind turbines were the culprits. It also emerged that large-scale battery storage can supply frequency regulation services on electricity grids and brings added benefits by way of near-immediate response times. These and other critical findings will be fleshed out in the Finkel led inquiry into energy markets. Not long after the Ministers’ meeting the Greens stepped in to recommend a senate inquiry into the potential for battery storage. The Select Committee Inquiry into Resilience of Electricity Infrastructure in a Warming World will inquire into the role of storage technologies and distributed generation in improving the resilience of electricity networks in the face of increasing extreme weather events like the South Australia storm. The committee has been tasked to report by 10 February 2017. “The relentless march of dangerous global warming means that these [South Australian] sorts of extreme weather events will only become more common in the future,” Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said. “Investing in localised energy storage represents a massive opportunity for Australia at this critical stage in the transition to renewable energy sources … the government says its most important job is to keep the lights on and it’s becoming increasingly clear that household and business battery storage will play a crucial role in that.
E-KwBe â€” Energy Storage Solution GCL's E-Kwbe Energy Storage System allows the consumer to maximise the efficiency of their daily generated solar power. It enables the home to use stored power when it is required, as an alternative to drawing power from the grid. This results in a reduction of the yearly quarterly electricity bill and yearly carbon footprint.
5kW PEAK DELIVERY AFFORDABLE
UP TO 8 UNITS WORKING IN UNISON
LIGHT WEIGHT OPTIONAL COLOURS
“An Australian ‘Battery Boom’ will bring jobs and increased energy security to families and businesses across the country,” she said. In a related move, energy specialists gathered in Adelaide on the eve of the Energy Ministers’ meeting where former Liberal leader and Patron of the Solar Council John Hewson urged a redesign of the electricity system to accommodate more renewables while also gearing up to meet Australia’s target of 26 to 28 per cent reduction in emissions by 2030. Hewson also remarked that battery storage solves solar and wind power intermittency and called on the federal government to build storage capabilities into all renewable projects.
Solutions right in front of us The growing recognition of the potential for energy storage to underpin energy security is a welcome step forward. As Fronius Managing Director Adrian Noronho cast it “We've become so used to taking our energy supply for granted; however when a blackout occurs we are instantly reminded of the importance of energy security. “Solar PV systems, especially those with back-up storage and smart grid features are not only making our energy supply sustainable, but also more reliable.” Selectronic relayed one example of the security provided through solar power and energy storage during localised blackouts in Melbourne in mid October caused by strong winds. Amanda Lenihan of Selectronic told us “We had a new mum with a 12 week old baby who has an SP PRO and batteries on her home in the Dandenongs. She was able to power on through the grid failure and help out other mums with storing their frozen breast milk.”
Next steps Speaking after the Ministers’ meeting Frydenberg allegedly expressed enthusiasm over a presentation by CSIRO on battery storage. Perhaps
States ramp up renewables The Solar Council’s Wayne Smith said the Queensland Government has taken a leadership role in renewable energy policy in Australia by committing to 50 per cent renewables by 2030 and establishing an Expert Panel to develop a roadmap for achieving this target. The Queensland Renewable Energy Expert Panel reported in October, finding 50 per cent renewables by 2030 was affordable, ambitious, and achievable, but also necessary to meet Queensland’s national and international climate change obligations. The Expert Panel found between 4000 to 5500 megawatts of new, large-scale renewable energy generation would be required to meet this target. This represents a $6.7 billion investment in renewable energy, creating 6700 additional full-time jobs. The Panel outlined three scenarios for achieving the 50 per cent renewables target, all of which would deliver substantial new investment in residential, commercial and large-scale solar and energy storage. Importantly, the Expert Panel recommended the Queensland Government provide support to attract up to 400 megawatts of additional renewable energy projects to Queensland in the period up to 2020 with a reverse auction process. The Panel also recommended the Queensland Government address regulatory and other non-price barriers to the increased uptake of residential and commercial solar. The Australian Solar Council is urging the Queensland Government to move quickly on this matter.
10 SUMMER 2016
Shoring up supplies Tesla is supplying grid-scale power in Southern California as part of a wider effort to prevent blackouts by replacing fossil fuel electricity generation with lithium-ion batteries for energy storage. The multi-million dollar deal involves 20 MW (80 MWh) of Tesla Powerpacks for Southern California Edison. The fast-tracked project will be operational by the end of 2016. A battery analyst at Bloomberg New Energy Finance says “this highlights the maturity of advanced technologies like energy storage to be contracted as a reliable resource in an emergency situation.” this snippet indicates that the meeting intended to caution ministers over their enthusiasm for renewable energy ended up being one of enlightening the federal energy minister? In any event the minister did gain the support of state and territory governments for measures to beef up the security of electricity supply and grids. Preliminary findings of the Finkel led investigation into Australia’s energy markets are due to be delivered prior to the December COAG Energy Ministers’ meeting. What must be acknowledged is the near universal acceptance that climate change will generate bigger storms and that “twentieth century” energy infrastructure must be redesigned and upgraded to cope. As John Grimes, Chief Executive of the Australian Solar Council and Energy Storage Council, has said, “we need a smart energy system that helps tackle climate change and is built to withstand the impacts of climate change. Our current energy system is not up to scratch. We need an energy system for the 21st Century – smart, strong, reliable, flexible, sustainable.” Happily, the technological solutions accompanied by a wealth of Australian expertise in storage systems are right in front of us – the government of the day simply needs the resolve to extricate itself from its baffling dedication to yesteryear’s fossil fuels and support smart twenty first century solar and storage technologies.
“The Renewable Energy Targets being set by the Queensland, Victorian, ACT and South Australian Governments are absolutely fundamental to achieving the national Renewable Energy Target,” Wayne Smith said. “We do need a coordinated national approach to renewable energy policy. Fifty per cent renewables by 2030 provides the basis for this coordinated national approach and it is high time the Australian Government gets on board.”
STRONG ENOUGH FOR THE ICECAP. RELIABLE ENOUGH FOR AUSTRALIA.
It’s no wonder scientists on the frigid icecaps of Greenland trust SunPower® solar technology to power their research. Rated number-one for durability by solar experts,1 SunPower panels deliver massive power in the most punishing conditions around the world—including cyclone-force winds and the harsh heat of the Aussie sun. Homeowners and businesses across Australia know that SunPower panels produce 70% more energy over 25 years in the same space as conventional ones.2 And that means greater savings over time, all with the industry’s best 25-year Combined Power and Product Warranty. For over 30 years, we’ve been demanding more of ourselves so you can have the very best. To learn more, go to www.sunpower.com.au or call 1-800-SUNPOWER. 1 Fraunhofer PV Durability Initiative for Solar Modules: Part 2”. Photovoltaics International, 2014. 2 SunPower 345W compared to a Conventional Panel (250W, 15.3% efficient, approx. 1.6 m2), 9% more energy per watt. BEW/DNV Engineering “SunPower Yield Report,” 2013 with CFV Solar Test Lab Report #12063, temp. coef. calculation © 2016 SunPower Corporation. All Rights Reserved. SUNPOWER, the SUNPOWER logo and DEMAND BETTER SOLAR are trademarks or registered trademarks of SunPower Corporation in the U.S. and other countries as well.
Wise investments The Clean Energy Finance Corporation is using finance to transform clean energy investment as Australia addresses the challenge of meeting its Renewable Energy Target. Since commencing operations in 2013, the CEFC has committed $2.3 billion to projects with a combined value of $5.7 billion. Here we look at the finances available and some of the groundbreaking projects. CEFC AND ARENA ARE WORKING TOGETHER to deliver the Innovation Fund
• New sources of capital (investing with co-financiers to develop
which focuses on companies, businesses and projects at early stages of
financial instruments such as climate bonds, equity funds, and
development now seeking growth capital or early stage capital. By working with a broad range of private sector investors, from the major banks through to solar farm developers, the CEFC is using innovative financing solutions to accelerate projects that are helping reduce Australia’s carbon emissions, while lowering energy costs. In the past year, the CEFC has committed more funds to a greater
programs to facilitate smaller projects). The question is – to what extent is clean energy investment now within reach for Australian businesses?
Facilitating business transformation The CEFC works with major banks and other financiers though their
number and more diverse range of investments than any year to date, but
established branch networks, to increase the accessibility of finance to
says there’s still plenty more to do, given the RET for large-scale generation
Australian business and not-for-profit communities.
of 33,000 GWh in 2020 means about 23.5 per cent of Australia’s electricity generation in 2020 will be from renewable sources. CEFC CEO Oliver Yates says it is imperative to further increase private sector investment to deliver on infrastructure and programs necessary to reduce emissions. “We’ve seen renewables move down the cost curve to the point where
CEFC now has programs with Westpac, NAB and Commonwealth Bank that are financing a range of technologies, including energy efficient and electric vehicles, commercial solar installations, battery storage and energy efficient technologies for building and industry. These programs offer business, government and not-for-profit customers finance for up to 100 per cent of the project cost at a 0.70 per
new-build solar generation costs are beginning to trend below the cost
cent discount on standard asset finance rates for technologies that meet
of new-build black coal generation and we are confident that solar
the CEFC’s investment guidelines. To learn more about these programs,
generation costs will continue to fall,” he said.
talk to your bank’s relationship manager.
“Sourcing finance for projects both big and small is still a major barrier
The CEFC is also working with non-bank lender Firstmac and
to accelerating the clean energy rollout. It’s a barrier the CEFC is working
independent fleet leasing company Eclipx to offer other finance programs.
hard to overcome.”
To be eligible for favourable loan interest rates, Eclipx customers must
Yates explained that CEFC investments are spread across the continent,
ensure the fleet vehicles meet a CO2 emissions threshold that is 20 per
and that the corporation works with a diverse range of co-investors,
cent below the most recently published Australian averages for new
project partners and financial structures to build a “robust portfolio” that
passenger and light commercial vehicles. The Firstmac financing program
showcases the potential of the clean energy sector.
is available for a wide range of commercial activities, manufacturing,
CEFC’s investment strategy The CEFC’s strategy is focused on three key areas: • Cleaner power solutions (including large and small-scale solar, wind and bioenergy) • A better built environment (energy-efficient property, vehicles, infrastructure and industry), and 20 MW Barcaldine Solar Farm to provide fringe-of-grid energy alternative
12 SUMMER 2016
logistics, agribusiness, retail and all levels of government as well as schools, hospitals and clubs.
A bright future for large scale solar and innovation The CEFC is working to maintain the momentum of solar within Australia’s transitioning energy sector and CEFC finance has
CEFC finance in action: Case studies A 20 MW AC (25 MW DC) solar farm is under construction at historic Barcaldine, more than 1000 kilometres north-west of Brisbane. The Barcaldine Remote Community Solar Farm Pty Ltd, a company owned by Elecnor Australia Pty Ltd, is developing the project which is benefiting from up to $20 million in cornerstone debt finance from the CEFC alongside ARENA funding of $22.8 million. When complete, the solar farm using 79,000 solar modules and singleaxis tracking technology, is expected to generate enough power to satisfy the needs of around 5300 homes. It is expected to provide a competitively priced renewable energy alternative on the fringe of the National Energy Market grid. “The fringe-of-grid location of this project will provide useful learnings for other off-grid remote area solar PV projects. We also expect the project to demonstrate the potential for solar to increase the reliability and quality of power at fringe-of-grid locations,” Yates said. The new Geelong headquarters of WorkSafe Victoria, currently under construction, will be the first multi-storey commercial office building outside the Melbourne CBD to achieve a 5.5 star base building energy rating under the National Australian Built Environment Rating System (NABERS). The CEFC is lending unlisted property fund manager Quintessential Equity $68 million to ‘stretch’ the building design of the 14-level commercial office tower that merges the historic Dalgety & Co building into a new landmark property development at 1 Malop Street in Geelong. Key initiatives include rooftop solar PV, improved heating and airconditioning systems, advanced building management systems and improved façade design, including higher performance glazing. “Our finance is ensuring the building is designed and constructed to a higher environmental standard than otherwise planned. The finished building will showcase the attractions of low emissions employee-friendly office spaces.” Yates said.
WorkSafe Victoria’s new HQ harnesses solar as part of an improved efficiency drive
complemented funding from ARENA on several solar projects. The CEFC
at early stages of development that are now seeking growth capital or
is looking to announce further large-scale solar commitments next year,
early stage capital to assist their businesses get to the next stage of their
some of which will be ARENA grant recipients.
“We see strong potential for future large-scale solar funding gaps to be
“We’re seeing increased take up of clean energy worldwide and
met through tailored financing mechanisms and we’re looking forward
we’re looking to make sure Australia is in a position to benefit through
to working with project proponents and other lenders to provide cost
innovation as well through easier access to finance for existing
competitive finance that accelerates the construction of large-scale solar in
Australia,” Yates told Solar & Storage. The CEFC and ARENA are also working together to deliver the Innovation Fund which focuses on companies, businesses and projects
LEARN MORE: Visit the CEFC’s website at www.cleanenergyfinancecorp.com.au Follow on twitter at @CEFCAus
“We see strong potential for future large-scale solar funding gaps to be met through tailored financing mechanisms and we’re looking forward to working with project proponents and other lenders to provide cost competitive finance that accelerates the construction of large-scale solar in Australia.”
Solar & Storage 13
Terrific twelve BIG SOLAR IS SET for a quantum leap with the announcement of a dozen large scale plants supported by ARENA’s large-scale solar funding round that will add 480 MW of solar PV energy to electricity grids across three states. The plants will triple Australia’s large-scale solar capacity from 240 MW to 720 MW. Also significant is that for less than $92 million in ARENA grant funding, the initiative has leveraged around $1 billion of commercial investment, meaning each ARENA dollar will leverage close to $10 of private sector investment, a dramatic improvement on the 80c of just three years ago. ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said “In 2014, the grant funding needed for large-scale solar projects was $1.60 per watt. In 2015, this dropped to 43 cents at the EOI stage of ARENA’s $100 million large-scale solar funding round; and to an average of 28 cents in June 2016, when full applications were submitted. “The average requirement of the projects we are taking forward today is an incredible 19 cents a watt. “Total project costs are down about 40 per cent.” Crucially, 480 MW of renewable energy also meets approximately 10 per cent of the new capacity needed to meet Australia’s 2020 Renewable Energy Target, or the reduction of about one million tonnes of CO2 emissions from the atmosphere each year. Construction is scheduled to commence in early 2017 and completed by the end of next the year. Tracking technology is likely to be deployed at most if not all the sites to maximise solar collection. More than 2300 new jobs will be created at the plants, six of which are in Queensland, five in New South Wales and one in Western Australia.
“We are witnessing a rising confidence in large-scale solar technology, a more supportive market for power purchase agreements, more competitive financing, stronger local supply chains and lower construction costs.” 14 SUMMER 2016
Kidston Solar Park, 50 MW Longreach Solar Farm, 15 MW Collinsville Solar Power Station, 42 MW Emu Downs Solar Farm 20 MW Whitsunday Solar Farm 58.1 MW Griffith Solar Farm (Neoen), 25 MW
Oakley Solar Farm, 25 MW Darling Downs Solar Farm, 110 MW White Rock Solar Farm, 20 MW Dubbo Solar Hubb, 24.2 MW Manildra Solar Farm, 42.5 MW Parkes Solar Farm, 50.6 MW
ARENA estimates by project Queensland • Darling Downs Solar Farm in Dalby by Origin Energy will generate 110 MW and provide around 550 new jobs. ARENA’s support: $20 million in this $216.7 million project. • Whitsunday Solar Farm in Collinsville by Whitsunday Solar will generate 58.1 MW and provide around 290 new jobs. ARENA’s support: $9.5 million/$122.4 million project. • Kidston Solar Farm by Genex Power will generate 50 MW and provide around 250 new jobs. ARENA’s support: $8.9 million/ $126.2 million project. • Collinsville Solar Power Station by RATCH Australia Corporation will generate 42 MW and provide around 210 new jobs. ARENA’s support: $9.5 million/$95.9 million project. • Oakey Solar Farm by Canadian Solar (Australia) will generate 25 MW and provide around 125 new jobs. ARENA’s support: $2.2 million for this $47.5 million project. • Longreach Solar Farm by Canadian Solar (Australia) will generate 15 MW and provide around 75 new jobs. ARENA’s support: $1.3 million/$28.7 million project.
NSW • Parkes Solar Farm by Neoen Australia will generate 50.6 MW and provide around 253 new jobs. ARENA support: $7.5 million/ $107.9 million project. • Manildra Solar Farm by Infigen Energy will generate 42.5 MW and provide around 212 new jobs. ARENA support $10.9 million/ $109.3 million project. • Griffith Solar Farm by Neoen Australia will generate 25 MW and provide around 125 new jobs. ARENA support $5 million/ $54.6 million project. • Dubbo Solar Farm by NEOEN Australia will generate 24.2 MW and provide around 121 new jobs. ARENA support: $5.5 million/ $55.6 million project. • White Rock Wind Farm in Glen Innes by Goldwind Australia will generate 20 MW and provide around 100 new jobs. ARENA support: $6.0 million/$44.5 million project. WA • Emu Downs Solar Farm in Cervantes by APT Pipeline will generate 20 MW and provide around 100 new jobs. ARENA support: $5.5 million/$47.2 million project.
2017 Solar and Storage Conference and Exhibition The solar, storage and smart energy conference Wednesday May 3 and Thursday May 4, 2017
Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre
5000 DELEGATES EXPECTED: Next year’s exhibition and conference is shaping up to be the biggest and best yet.
UNDER ONE ROOF: The latest technologies and innovations in smart storage, inverters and batteries, energy efficiency, lighting, sustainability and the built environment.
BRILLIANT LINE-UP ON SHOW: A host of world leading Australian and overseas innovators showcasing new heights of innovation and excellence. Complementing the wide-ranging exhibitions are:
• THREE SPECIALIST FREE-TO-ATTEND CONFERENCE STREAMS: Smart Energy and Energy Storage; Industry and Policy and Professional Development.
• HIGH-LEVEL EXPERTS in technology, policy and industry analysis will present insights into market dynamics.
EE R F O T ND TE T A
WHAT TO EXPECT OVER THE TWO DAYS: Product launches and insights, Exhibitor displays, networking events, and industry specialist speakers who present facts and figures about the rapidly evolving clean energy industry. YOUR INDUSTRY WORKING FOR YOU: Organised by the Australian Solar Council and Energy Storage Council, the conference is now in its 55th year. The event is run by industry for industry, with revenues channeled back into supporting and promoting renewable energy in Australia.
OUR SPONSORS FOR 2017 ARE:
PROMINENT INDUSTRY SUPPORTERS: The 2017 Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition welcomes Platinum Sponsors Redback Technologies and GCL SI, and Gold Sponsors AC Solar Warehouse, Alpha ESS, BYD and SSE.
Platinum Sponsors Gold Sponsors Conference Day Sponsors
ESC Day 1 Sponsor
PD Day 1 Sponsor
For more information contact: Brett Thompson Sales Manager +61 402 181 250 email@example.com
David McCarthy Event Manager +61 466 810 373 firstname.lastname@example.org
The full prospectus can be seen at www.solarexpo.com.au *** More than 60 per cent of exhibition space has already been booked. Companies that want to market themselves as smart energy providers to the 5000 delegates expected at the 2017 Show need to take action soon or they may miss out ***
Solar & Storage 15
Power purchases In the Spring issue of Solar & Storage Professor Peter Newman wrote about technology platforms being invented to sell excess local electricity generated by households using blockchain software. This led us to Curtin University research fellow Jemma Green, who co-founded Perth based Power Ledger, a blockchain energy software company that enables people to sell their surplus renewable energy to interested parties through direct negotiations based on supply and demand, and without using an electricity retailer. Could this be the start of a new phenomenon? AS JEMMA GREEN SAYS, the decision to install rooftop PV is not always based on power bill savings or the environment; for many it’s an investment decision and the ability to sell excess energy to other customers represents return on investment. “A typical solar powered household is exporting a lot of what is produced but in most cases getting a small feed-in tariff of around 7 ckW/h. Under the energy trading platform they can find someone across the road to purchase at a higher rate than that, but cheaper than the going retail price,” Green explained. “You will see trading between those two ranges. “Most of the trading activity would take place during the day when the sun is shining, however once more of the 1.58 million households with rooftop PV add battery storage that trading will start to happen 24 hours a day. “Batteries will further change the system … citizens are showing they want to own the technology and take control of this, they want to become prosumers and to be able to monetise their surplus electricity in a proper market place and that is where the notion of citizen utilities came about.”
Blockchain trials In December this year a trial gets underway in Auckland, where energy company Vector has signed an agreement with Power Ledger to deploy its blockchain technology at 500 sites including schools, community groups and households. Along with her Power Ledger colleagues David Martin and John Bulich, Green is confident about the development, saying “I think it could manifest
Curtin University research fellow Jemma Green
“There are opportunities for all incumbent players in this new paradigm.”
very rapidly in the New Zealand market, there is a lot of appetite there.” A trial is also earmarked for Bussleton in Western Australia and Power Ledger has struck an MoU with retailer Synergy, which has recognised the need for a commercial business model for the ‘new energy system’ and will be trialing it on the South West interconnected system. “If we don't see the grid as a trading platform, or allow citizens to trade across it, then they are more likely to store the surplus renewable electricity in the battery and use it behind the meter and that will mean the grid will be less used and become less valuable which is the whole death spiral scenario. “Retailer churn is big, around 30 per cent of customers [switch] each year. If they instead allow citizens to trade power or co-own solar panels with the utility to share the benefits retailers are more likely to have longterm relations with customers. “Enabling citizen utilities is a way of seeing the ongoing relevance of the grid. There are opportunities for all incumbent players in this new paradigm.”
16 SUMMER 2016
Secure database Blockchain is a single database on which all counterparties can transact; however no one owns the database and the information it contains is held in multiple places or ‘nodes’ such as a computer, a laptop. Currently there are between 5000 and 7000 nodes sitting on the blockchain around the world which renders it safe and secure; hackers would have a hard time taking control of the 50+ per cent necessary to change a database entry. Simply put, no one owns it or controls it. In energy markets blockchain is used to track the movement of energy, to see where it was generated and moved, stored in a battery and consumed, and users can settle off the back of that. Blockchain deals with the level of complexity purchasing energy off a number of people very simply, very securely and transparently.
Photo courtesy of ABB Australia
• Storage innovation and applications • Battery finder: unique industry resource • Ecoult’s UltraBattery at an eco resort • Redback’s multi million dollar partnership • Storage news: GCL, Enphase, Redflow and Sonnen deliver the goods
• SolaX, Fusion with Aquion, TrinaBEST and Red Energy in action • S&C powers the outback • SolarEdge and DC currents • ABB: the brains of a microgrid • EV numbers gear up
Battery storage boom
ARENA’s Ivor Frischknecht recently summed up the state of the renewables market, stating just five years ago developments were focused on solar cell performance and efficiency. Today it’s all about smart storage solutions. We could not agree more. Battery storage is clearly the talk of the town and in recent weeks its profile has been raised, with a growing recognition across the community of the powerful potential of energy storage to fortify energy security. The Greens have launched an inquiry into battery potential which is expected to recommend measures to be taken by federal, state and local governments to fast-track the rollout of battery storage technologies, to stimulate demand, create jobs complement renewables and drive the reduction in costs through economies of scale. They state: “Investing in localised energy storage represents a massive opportunity for Australia at this critical stage in the transition to renewable energy sources …” Uptake is set to accelerate. Lior Handelsman of SolarEdge declared 2016 was “the year of storage”; however we suspect the same will be said of 2017, when it is anticipated up to 10,000 residential storage systems with average capacities of around 6 kWh to 8 kWh will be installed across Australia. There is no better time to be involved in the energy industry and in the words of John Bradley of Energy Networks Association, Australia is an “international hot spot for battery storage”.
Battery finder The Energy Storage Council has launched what is believed to be a world-first battery finder. A few quick clicks takes viewers to the register containing a handy snapshot of all known batteries on the market, listed in alphabetical order. This may be the world’s biggest online catalogue of battery storage products. The reference contains all key specifications and battery characteristics to enable industry as well as consumers to determine what is right for them. www.energystorage.org.au/batteryfinder
Brisbane Energy Storage Forum Date Tuesday 15 November Time 6.00-8.30pm Place South Leagues Club in West End, Brisbane Keynote political speaker Queensland Deputy Premier Jackie Trad, Minister for Trade and Investment, Local Government and Infrastructure. The Energy Storage Council is reaching hundreds of homeowners and demystifying the dynamics of home energy storage. Technical presenters at the popular Storage Forums cut through the complexities to present a simplified yet realistic of the power of storage: system options, capabilities and costs. To register visit www.energystorage.org.au/event/ energy-storage-forum/ 18 SUMMER 2016
Bronze members Amplitude Consultants Aztech International BALM Electrical B&R Enclosures Cola Solar Crystal Solar Energy CSA Services DPA Solar Dynamic Solar EMSc Asia Pacific
Energy Analysis & Engineering Energy Invest Australia Energy Smart Water Enervision Australia Freshwater Group global-roam Governance Insight Green Sun Solar Greenlink Solar
Grid Edge I Want Energy Infinity Power K&L Gates Liberty Energy Lithium Battery Storage MO Energy MyPower MP Natural Solar Navitus Solar
NewGen Solar Off Grid Power Solutions Platinum Solar & Electrical QGE Radiant Energy Systems Renewable Energy Installations Reposit Power Solar Calculator Solar Hybrid Conversions Solar PV Commercial
SolarQuotes Standard Solar Sunjuice Solar Towards Tomorrow Energy Tranter Engineering Tropical Energy Solutions Velocity Energy Wayne Kaufline ZAPD Energy Zest Energy
Shift your way of thinking.
With Redback Smart Hybrid Solar Invertersâ€™ new Ouija Board, you can now shift your customers usage in line with peak PV production. The new Ouija Board will increase your customers self-consumption by turning on loads through relays when excess PV is generated. This smart technology also reduces the need for larger batteries and increases your consumers return on investment. Contact us today on 1300 240 182 or visit redbacktech.com to find out more.
Ecoult engineer Ganesh Ganeshkumar and the Cedarvale manager
Cedarvale Health and Lifestyle Retreat A study in remote microgrid-powered community “We see UltraBattery as a key technology to help make diesel the backup rather than the baseload technology in offgrid systems.” CEDARVALE HEALTH AND LIFESTYLE RETREAT is a thriving business in the picturesque Kangaroo Valley, two hours south of Sydney. The off-grid retreat prided itself on its renewable power system, which included a solar array coupled with a micro-hydro generator and set of batteries for storage. However, the site’s peak energy-demand periods coincide with breakfast and dinner (and associated showers and spa treatments), which take place just before and just after the bulk of the day’s solar power is available. The batteries in use were not suited to constant cycling, and had reached the end of their life, therefore the site was becoming increasingly dependent on a back-up diesel generator whenever the micro-hydro was not producing enough power. Like all off-grid communities, Cedarvale wanted continuous renewable power while minimising its use of diesel generators. It was clear that an energy storage solution could offer significant benefits to the site so its owners went on the look out for a set of smoothing and shifting batteries to help regulate the site’s power. The customised solution, developed by Moruya-based installer Bunya Solar with engineering assistance from Ecoult, was to install a nominally 48 V, 20 kW peak power UltraFlex energy storage system, with power flows managed by a Selectronic SP Pro inverter. Ecoult provided Cedarvale with a fast-charging UltraFlex battery solution designed for continuous use in partial state of charge – perfect for periods when solar power is limited. The battery manages variations in demand and fluctuations in solar input. Ecoult’s 20 kW UltraFlex unit contains 16 of its 12 volt UltraBattery monoblocs in four strings each of four batteries to make up a 48 V system.
Technicalities The 20 kW UltraFlex unit contains 16 of its 12 volt UltraBattery monoblocs in four strings each of four batteries to make up a 48 V system. This meets the variability between generation and demand and suffers no ill effects from weeks of cycling with no refresh or float periods. On the rare occasions the generator is used, UltraFlex charges at a high rate so the generator can operate at its full rated output – where it is most efficient. Once UltraFlex and the 10 kW solar array were installed, diesel use dropped dramatically. During the first summer after installation, the diesel generator was used only for a few hours throughout the entire season. On winter days diesel is sometimes used for a brief period just after sundown. “The reduction in diesel is significant, the site has used just two litres of fuel in the 15 months since the UltraFlex installation, compared with an average 22.5 litres per week beforehand,” John Wood of Ecoult said. “The Cedarvale business is built on sustainability and we’re pleased Ecoult can help them achieve almost diesel-free operation. We see UltraBattery as a key technology to help make diesel the backup rather than the baseload technology in offgrid systems. “Lead-acid is the leading offgrid chemistry but it’s always been chosen for its deep cycle characteristics. UltraBattery allows lead-acid to now excel in high-rate variability management, to get the full benefit of renewables and diesel. Yet it retains all the deep cycling benefit of the world’s best offgrid lead-acid batteries.” He explained that the 20 kW UltraFlex had proven to be well sized for small industrial and commercial operations, handling long energy draws and high power flows, and can be monitored from anywhere due to Ecoult’s monitoring technology. “We’ve found on real sites that there is zero predictability for when a customer will turn on a large load or when a wisp of cloud might move over the sun. UltraBattery is one of the few chemistries that is resilient and robust with all the vagaries and fluctuations of renewable inputs and human-controlled loads.” Given that the owners are extremely environmentally conscious, the Ultrabattery’s 100 per cent recyclability (96 per cent of which is completely closed loop – where the old battery parts become components in a new battery) is a bonus. www.ecoult.com
20 SUMMER 2016
REDBACK: a new dawn for Australia’s clean energy sector STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIPS in the storage industry propel advances, and some carry more clout than others. Such as this: the deal between Redback Technologies and EnergyAustralia to the tune of $9.3 million. Under the arrangement, EnergyAustralia will promote the Redback Generation 2 Smart Hybrid Solar Inverter System to its 1.7 million customers in four states and the ACT. More than a million homeowners will have the option to take advantage of reliable, affordable and cleaner energy solutions. The commercial venture, which understandably attracted enormous media attention, is highly significant and could well provide the blueprint for the market which is already transitioning toward disruptive technologies. EnergyAustralia’s Andrew Perry said the investment reflects the energy retailer’s commitment to giving consumers more control over their energy consumption … “and as we’ve seen with solar systems, electric vehicles and battery storage, people are excited about technology that can help them manage their energy use, reduce carbon emissions and save money. “EnergyAustralia’s partnership with Redback Technologies is about helping great Australian ideas and innovation get to market.” Redback’s Phil Livingston said “We are quite enthused by our partnership with EnergyAustralia which significantly accelerates Redback’s technology roadmap and strategic plan for leading the disruptive change required for mass adoption of renewables. This marks a new chapter for the clean energy sector in Australia. “The world is changing and decentralised energy generation is providing consumers greater choice of where to source their energy,” Phil told Solar & Storage. “Democratising energy access is central to what Redback is trying to achieve [and] as a start-up you try and talk to everybody and about emissions controls and try and see where commonalities lie, and from the start with EnergyAustralia they got it. They just got it. “They liked that we are putting consumers first, that we are allowing them choices over energy supplies and many want more renewables and that is obviously what we are providing.” Founder and Managing Director Redback Technologies, Philip Livingston and EnergyAustralia Executive – NextGen Andrew Perry
He added “This is not just a financial investment – it is also about the changing landscape. EnergyAustralia is going to move to market with a model that provides consumers more choice and we are somewhat central to that … we could not be happier, this is an incredibly empowering and enlightening experience. Reflecting on the bigger picture he said “As an industry we need to be taken seriously. We will change the grid, it is changing now and oil rich countries like UAE Europe and US are moving down the renewables path because it's the most economically efficient outcome. “In Australia we need to not be fighting the tide, it is coming. There are two elements with the grid that need to be taken into account in real time: supply and demand, with adjustments should supplies fail. His advice to forging progress: “Think bigger and outside the box; one person can power change if they apply themselves. I challenge people to be less focused on incremental change instead think about the [end] situations that mean something. “There is a broader vision here: we are trying to build an eco system based on incredible technology, leading the charge in advanced technology and trying to empower installers and consumer to use these technologies that bring jobs and greater choices from clean sources. “People do not want to have to rely on a dirty grid, nether do they want to sacrifice living standards caused by global warming.”
“Redback’s growth is creating significant employment opportunities for those in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics sectors. We are always on the lookout for thought leaders who are passionate about changing the world.”
Solar & Storage 21
S&C’s Energy Storage Solution: A CASE STUDY S&C enabled one of Australia’s most influential utilities to improve the quality of power delivered to its remote customers and to integrate energy storage into its grid. This was provided at a fraction of the cost of the alternative that would be to upgrade the lines, and Ergon Energy’s remote customers now experience voltages equal to that found in urban areas. ELECTRICITY UTILITY ERGON ENERGY was looking to improve power quality on its Single Wire Earth Return (SWER) lines, which were developed a century ago to bring power to remote parts of Australia and New Zealand primarily to accommodate basic domestic and farm loads. As such it is not uncommon for a SWER line to stretch for hundreds of kilometres, with distribution transformers positioned at intervals along its length. Initially each customer used a relatively small amount of electricity. For these situations, SWER systems provide the best balance of technical and commercial returns. The high capacity and higher cost three phase systems were not necessary to supply the relatively small loads. Over the years, the population growth in these areas has been limited; however energy consumption on the SWER network has been growing at an average of one per cent each year due to increased penetration of air-conditioning and other electrical appliances. Load types can vary from typical household loads to intense farming loads, which creates a situation where there is low diversity and load profiles exhibit a lot of variability. The growth in demand has meant that many SWER feeders are reaching capacity and/or are experiencing significant long-term voltage issues. The conventional solution would be to upgrade the line from a SWER to a twoor three-wire system to provide additional capacity and improve power quality. However, such a strategy would be very costly because these lines can reach distances of 700 kilometres and often run through the inaccessible Australian outback. Instead, Ergon Energy conceptualised using an energy storage system placed toward the end of the SWER lines to improve the power quality experienced by its customers. Widely regarded as the world’s leading developer of innovative SWER-line technologies, Ergon Energy developed a proprietary energy storage control algorithm to provide the optimal mix
Delivery of the Grid Utility Support System units to Ergon’s stock yard. of both real and reactive power to the line. But the energy storage solution still had to also withstand the harsh and remote Australian outback environment without the use of maintenance-intensive refrigeration-based cooling systems.
Strategic partnership Ergon Energy chose to partner with S&C Electric Company because of S&C’s extensive energy storage experience and history of developing
“The growth in demand has meant that many SWER feeders are reaching capacity and/or are experiencing significant long-term voltage issues.”
Twin Grid Utility Support System units providing extra support along a SWER line.
“It’s been a rollercoaster of a ride working on delivering an energy storage platform to support a lot of our rural customers. It entails using the same storage technology used in residential applications, but it’s significantly larger. It’s certainly been amazing to be at
new and innovative technological solutions for the grid. S&C’s task was to oversee product design, manufacturing, shipment and
the leading edge of a lot of new
commissioning, and to provide all project-management services.
technology that’s been rolled
S&C overcame significant technical challenges to meet Ergon Energy’s specifications. It ultimately provided an integrated solution
out.” Stephen Richardson,
that included a comprehensive communications interface to the utility,
a PureWave®CES Community Energy Storage System, and a lithium-ion battery.
Engineer, Ergon Energy
S&C developed an ultra-robust, utility grade, skid-mounted solution capable of withstanding harsh weather conditions. S&C worked closely with Ergon Energy to integrate and test Ergon Energy’s SWER- support algorithm and to deploy the Grid Utility Support System units in the field. S&C carefully managed the battery suppliers and subcontractors to overcome any issues, and worked with Ergon Energy closely throughout proof of concept testing, which proved to be very beneficial to fine tune the technical solution and continue to build on the working relationship.
An installed Grid Utility Support System unit
WHO MAKES THE MOST EFFICIENT AND SAFEST RESIDENTIAL STORAGE PRODUCT? SOLARWATT … INTRODUCING MYRESERVE ... MyReserve is the first product to meet all international standards for residential Li-Ion battery storage products. Fully tested and accredited by CETECOM and TUV. Raw materials to final product, MyReserve exceeds even automotive standards. Best efficiency ensures you get the most out of your storage product, industry leading guarantee and the ultimate in safety. Built to last, German engineered, no question.
MyReserve. THE FUTURE OF BATTERY STORAGE HAS ARRIVED.
The advantages of using storage on the DC side Lior Handelsman spent more than a decade at Israel’s Electronics Research Department which is tasked with developing innovative and complex systems. He’s since put his specialist skills and knowledge to use as VP of Marketing & Product Strategy for SolarEdge, the company he founded in 2006. BATTERIES CAN ONLY STORE ENERGY in its direct current (DC) form so the very essence of energy storage is DC. The reason that DC lends itself to being storable is because it has a unidirectional flow. A graphical representation of this would be a straight horizontal line. However, energy that is expressed in alternating currents (AC) has an electric charge flow that changes direction. This is depicted as a sine wave in a graph. Trying to store energy in its AC form would be like trying to capture a wave – it’s impossible. Knowing that the battery is limited to DC energy and that solar modules produce in DC, it becomes obvious that the rest of the storage hardware should also be in DC. This is because each time that there is a conversion from AC to DC or vice versa, there is some amount of energy loss in the process. But when PV power is stored directly in the battery in its DC form, there are no additional conversions from AC to DC and then back again to AC for use in the home or export to the grid, like in some microinverter storage solutions. This means that a DC-coupled solution allows for higher system efficiency because there will only be one total conversion versus an AC system that requires three separate conversions.
Benefits of a DC coupled storage system Besides minimising the initial energy losses, there are multiple other benefits to a DC-coupled storage system. First of all, a DC-coupled system can be implemented with only one inverter, which initially means a simpler installation. But having only one inverter manage the system also means functionality benefits. For instance, with one inverter it is much simpler to coordinate advanced functionalities that are required in some locations than trying to
“Trying to store energy in its AC form would be like trying to capture a wave – it’s impossible.”
24 SUMMER 2016
Lior Handelsman of SolarEdge synchronise and coordinate these functions between two different inverters in an AC-coupled solution. I will touch on this further in regards to backup systems. However, in terms of power, the two major benefits of a DCcoupled storage system are the ability to use PV power above the inverter rating and the fact that the inverter does not limit power. A DC-coupled solution provides the ability to use PV power above the inverter rating, while an AC coupled system will not. For instance, in some locations there is a limitation on the size of the inverter installed. So, if the inverter size is limited to 8 kW, with an AC-coupled system this would include both the PV inverter and the inverter for the battery. This means that an 8 kW AC-coupled system would only be able to have a 4 kW inverter for PV and a 4 kW inverter for storage – thus limiting the PV system to only 4 kW. But with a DC-coupled system, the 8 kW limitation would be allocated to only one inverter, thus allowing a larger PV system and greater battery charge/discharge capability.
Seamless integration of Li-ion batteries — with Conext™ Bridge Introducing the Conext Bridge, a powerful plug-and-play communications device that detects Li-ion batteries from leading brands and auto-configures the Conext line of products and greatly simplifies installation. Intelligent charging algorithms optimise the charging of the batteries for maximum availability and longevity of use.
©2016 Schneider Electric. All Rights Reserved. Schneider Electric | Life Is On is a trademark and the property of Schneider Electric SE, its subsidiaries, and affiliated companies. •AD20161020-Conext Bridge
Fewer limits to energy flow In terms of the second power benefit, a DC-coupled system is able to route more energy to the battery as the energy flow is not limited by the inverter capacity. This is because the energy is routed directly to the battery without needing to go through any conversion process. However, in an AC system, the inverter acts as a bottleneck for energy flow. As an example, in a PV system that has a 10 kW production but a 7.6 kW inverter, the energy to the grid and the AC-coupled battery would be limited to 7.6 kW. This means that potential energy would simply be lost. However, with a DC-coupled system the 7.6 kW would be routed through the inverter to the grid and the additional 2.4 kW would be sent directly the battery, without needing to pass through the inverter. Because the inverter does not limit power in an DC-coupled system, system owners are able to increase energy production, which leads to improved RoI. DC-coupled solutions are also beneficial for backup storage systems. When an inverter is in backup mode because the grid is temporarily down, the inverter may try to power the backed up loads with energy from both the battery and PV. When this is done in DC-coupled solution, the energy only needs to be drawn from a single inverter. But with an AC coupled system, the two or more inverters will require complicated syncronisation. Although at first sight it might seem that an AC-coupled system would split the burden between the two inverters and potentially lighten the load of each, it actually causes the energy management to be more complicated and can cause the energy production and storage to be decreased. Because working with, instead of against, the limitations that energy storage provides many advantages, SolarEdge is a strong advocate of DCcoupled storage solutions. Understanding these technology limitations and knowing the best way to overcome them is important for installers so they can select solutions to best meet the needs of the system owners. www.solaredge.com
“Electric vehicles are the solar panels of the automotive industry. With the
“Electric vehicles will help the
right support, we
17%: Australia’s carbon emissions produced by
uptake that would
could see a rapid have positive
+6%: rise in emissions by 2020
outcomes for our
47% by 2050: reduction in CO2 from EVs
health, the economy
achieve its two
$8000+ lower: reduction in consumer EV
costs through e.g. FBT
ClimateWorks 26 SUMMER 2016
Source: The Path Forward for Electric Vehicles in Australia.
and for consumers.”
(Turn to page 38 for more on EVs.)
ABB’s part in Grid Energy Storage As large-scale battery technology and economies of scale continue to improve, many industrial utilities are investigating the use of battery technology as the basis for Grid Energy Storage Systems (GESS).
VICTORIA’S AUSNET SERVICES owns and operates approximately $11 billion of electricity and gas distribution assets that connect into more than 1.3 million Victorian homes and businesses. But like many operators is keen to explore the ability to manage peak demand with the potential to defer investment in network upgrades. Back in 2013 AusNet began investigating GESS, and chose to trial the technology. Following a competitive tender process, they awarded the contract to design, construct and deliver a GESS to a consortium led by ABB Australia and Samsung SDI, with ABB in Australia providing the integration technology and design and Samsung SDI taking the role of battery supplier. Situated in the northern suburbs of Melbourne at an end-of-line distribution feeder in an industrial estate, the GESS (pictured) is installed in a number of transportable shipping containers and transportable skids.
Technical specifications The GESS consists of a 1 MWh 1C lithium battery system which interfaces to the microgrid through ‘the heart of the GESS’, a 1 MVA PowerStore™ (an inverter-coupled energy storage system which interfaces the Samsung lithium battery energy storage system to the grid), a 1 MVA diesel generator, a 3 MVA three-winding transformer and a SF6 gas-circuit breaker-based ring main unit with associated power protection systems. Through the installation and commissioning process a full set of site acceptance tests were conducted to demonstrate GESS capabilities with
respect to power system supply and stability, islanding and reconnection to the larger grid and management of the various system components i.e. passive and proportional load sharing between the PowerStore, battery management and charging. Commissioned in December 2014, the system is nearing the end of a two-year trial to explore the benefits to peak demand management, power system quality and network investment deferral that large-scale, gridconnected energy systems can provide. Signs are promising: the capabilities of the system demonstrated to date show promise for future microgrid applications.
Battery specifications Lithium-ion based batteries were used because of their high energy density and power ratings. The 1 MWh 1C batteries are capable of symmetric charge and discharge ratings of +/- 1 MW, and can transition from charge to discharge very quickly, allowing for robust system operation. They have a wide depth of discharge range of 3 per cent to 100 per cent and a known and predictable degradation of the state of health that allows for the total capacity of the GESS at end-of-life to be guaranteed. The batteries are installed in modular trays allowing for replacement of any single tray of cells without the need for extensive servicing.
The GESS is fully portable, and all system components are transportable. The system is housed in six twenty-foot shipping containers and two transportable skids. INSET: ABB’s Microgrid Plus control system manages the GESS and ensures that consistent grid supply and stability is maintained.
28 SUMMER 2016
Storage products news and updates GCL moves goods GCL System Integration Technology recently signed a deal with wholesale partner One Stop Warehouse to distribute another 1000 of its energy storage units the E-KwBe. Launched in Australia at the ASC’s Solar and Storage Show (pictured right), the lightweight E-KwBe comes in a range of colours. Mr Shu Hua president of GCL-SI said, "The E-KwBe brings the everyday consumer one step closer to independence from fossil fuels by maximizing the use
of free energy from the sun … this intelligent product is highly accessible to those with solar panels because it is compatible with most, if not all, mainstream inverters on the market." This is the second deal that GCL-SI has signed with One Stop Warehouse; the first batch of 1000 E-KwBe arrived in September and the system has already been successfully installed in Brisbane to “glowing reviews”. One Stop Warehouse is the sole wholesale partner of GCL-SI for its PV and energy storage products.
SolaX Power SolaX has developed a range of three-phase inverters that they claim “boast a wide MPPT voltage range” to allow for more energy harvesting and have a maximum input voltage of 1000V.
All SolaX three-phase inverters are IP65 rated, have an integrated DC switch, WIFI as standard and an OptiCool temperature controlled fan.
Melbourne based Cody Hua proudly showcased the technology at a recent expo and drew attention to the sleek design of the casing that was inspired by household fridges. Nice touch.
Solar & Storage 29
Storage products news and updates Enphase AC batteries Enphase chose to launch its Enphase AC Batteries in Australia and New Zealand, and the much anticipated first global shipment of the Enphase AC Batteries have now been installed in the first homes around Australia. The modular 1.2 kWh batteries enable installers to ‘right-size’ each installation to match a homeowner's energy needs, and they
can simply and easily add more batteries in the future as energy usage changes. Enphase says pre-orders from partners in the region for the modular 1.2 kWh lithium iron phosphate batteries have reached 70,000 units which exceeds their initial expectations and bodes well for the future. Managing director of Enphase Asia-Pacific Nathan Dunn said "Installers are telling us the Enphase Storage System offers the simplest installation on the market, and their customers are just as excited, with many paying for the system without even seeing it." According to Enphase it takes around 30 minutes to install three AC Batteries, not including running the AC cable to the switchboard or installing circuit breakers. Over the past three months, Enphase has staged online and in-person training sessions for installers across Australia and New Zealand to prepare its network of 1000 installation partners for Enphase AC Battery installations.
Storage developments – spreading the news We are always on the lookout for insights into the latest in storage industry developments and the leadership role played by members of the Energy Storage Council. So help us spread the good news! Tell us about your storage products, services and projects that demonstrate the wide range of applications for this important, fast moving technology. Email some details and an image to email@example.com for coverage in this section of the Solar & Storage and for our e-Newsletter that is circulated to 24,000 in the industry every two weeks. Help us to represent the storage industry as it is – smart, dynamic and vital to the future energy mix.
30 SUMMER 2016
Enphase has launched the Enphase Installer Network Program, a training and lead generation program to recognise partners in the field. Enphase has also kicked off #easyasACB, a competition on Facebook for installers to showcase their best Enphase AC Battery home installations. The Enphase AC Battery is certified as compliant to the AS/NZS 4777.2:2015 grid connection standard. Julia Pfeiffer commented on the strong interest in energy storage, saying. “What is emerging as a trend from our discussions is the demand for energy storage will grow in Australia with changes to feed-in-tariffs. Our installers and partners also believe this will feed into the demand for the Enphase Storage System.” Reminder: Enphase has kicked off #easyasACB, a competition on Facebook for installers to showcase their best Enphase AC Battery home installations.
Raising standards Grid connection of energy systems via inverters – Inverter requirements AS/NZS 4777.2:2015 replaces AS/NZS 4777.2:2005 and AS/NZS 4777.3:2005. The new standard has been required throughout Australia from October 9, and at a later date will be required in New Zealand. From that date authorities may require new installations or upgrades to existing grid-connected PV and battery storage installations to use inverters that are certified to meet the new standard. The new standard provides a framework for advanced grid functions and demand response features that enable intelligent distributed energy resources to contribute to the smooth functioning of the electrical grid and allow greater adoption of renewable resources.
Red Energy’s philanthropic venture St Lucy’s Primary School in Wahroonga is the first school in NSW to embrace solar and battery storage after the installation of a 25.175 kW solar system and batteries. The good folk at Red Energy donated and installed 95 x JA Solar 265 W polycrystalline panels on the gymnasium roof and a Panasonic lithium-ion 8kWh battery. The system will generate about 40,770 kWh per annum, enough energy to run the pool pump and heating system all year round. CEO of Red Energy Iain Graham estimates the solar and battery system will cut carbon emissions by 55 tons per year, the equivalent of six Australian homes. “The St Lucy’s story is a great example of the benefits the solar and battery technology can bring,” he said. “The solar and battery package is not just going to heat the pool, but it will save the school thousands of dollars on energy which can be diverted into its learning programs.”
Redflow: kicking goals Redflow recently announced a major order for its new ZCell zinc-bromine flow batteries. Melbourne-based ZCell installer Standard Solar has placed the order for 48 ZCell batteries, worth about $600,000. Redflow received its first shipment of batteries for ZCell in September and has announced its first ZCell installers, who provide national coverage for quoting and installing ZCell-based energy storage systems. Redflow recently verified that the ES Series Inverter from GoodWe Power Supply Technology Co. Ltd. works with its new 10 kWh zinc-bromine flow battery, the ZCell, allowing for easy deployment into Australian homes. Redflow CEO Simon Hackett (pictured left), who oversaw the inverter verification process, said “Certifying the GoodWe inverter to work with ZCell is part of our commitment to make sure that ZCell is a quick and easy battery to deploy.” The new ZCell battery is also compatible with the SP PRO multi-mode battery inverter from pioneering Melbournebased electronics manufacturer Selectronic Australia.
Want to reach thousands involved in solar and storage?
GIVE BRETT A CALL Solar & Storage magazine is read by up to 18,000 industry professionals – designers, project managers, installers, technicians, manufacturers and more. Brett’s name will be familiar to many as he has gained more than seven years publishing and events experience within the solar industry. He now brings his skills and expertise to the Australian Solar Council and the Energy Storage Council across the range of publications as well as events including the industry’s leading show, the May Solar Energy Exhibition and Conference and Energy Storage Council Exhibition and Conference. Speaking from an informed viewpoint, Brett says it’s an exciting time for the industry which is making renewables ever more accessible to communities across Australia while re-shaping the future of energy supplies. With a passion for helping companies to build their brand and market share, Brett looks forward to helping Solar Council and Energy Storage Council members boost their revenues.
Contact Brett on 0402 181 250 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Solar & Storage 31
Storage products news and updates Sonnen moves into Australian market Unlike Tesla, German based battery maker Sonnen is not a household name in Australia; however that is all set to change because Europe’s largest supplier of energy storage systems views Australia as “potentially its biggest market” and recently established a base here to build up business. Sonnen technology is centred on a Lithium-Iron-Phosphate (LifePO4) battery that it developed and is capable of supplying at least 80 per cent of a household’s energy needs. Because it enables energy utilities to draw down power from batteries connected to households to meet peak energy demands, it has been described as “a utility without power plants”. Sonnen markets a complete “Plug and Play system” including an in-built inverter and intelligent smart software as well as the battery. The system is flexible, allowing households to choose between battery capacities ranging from 2 kWh up to 16 kWh, in 2 kWh increments.
Sonnen training session presented in Byron Bay by technical business manager for Australia/New Zealand, James Sturch A self-learning algorithm and data from the weather bureau processed by the smart system can identify the best time to start charging and can activate appliances like washing machines.
Fusion joins with Aquion Fusion Power Systems has joined forces with Aquion Energy to launch Titan SmartStorage which they promote as a fully integrated solar storage system for residential and off-grid applications. Fusion’s Australian-made, purpose-built inverter and charge controller which is designed to withstand Australian conditions has found a partner in Aquion Energy Aspen saltwater batteries. The Titan SmartStorage systems are modular and scalable for maximum flexibility, free of toxic chemicals, 100 per cent recyclable, noncombustible, and fire-safe. Fusion Power Systems COO Nathaniel Allen said “Aquion has played an important role in the world’s second largest residential storage project … our choice was clear for the Titan product line – these systems are powered by the safest battery in the world. They provide long discharge cycles and are designed specifically to meet the needs of the Australian market. ”Built on Aquion’s unique environmentally friendly saltwater-based Aqueous Hybrid Ion (AHI™) chemistry, Aspen batteries are clean, sustainable, and long-lasting.”
32 SUMMER 2016
TrinaBEST storage solution TrinaBEST (‘Battery Energy Storage by Trina’) recently showcased its second generation Residential Energy Storage Solution which is described as integrating seamlessly with Lithium Ion battery and TrinaBEST’s AC coupled engineering. The system is designed as wall-mounted with outdoor rating, and TrinBEST says the battery and PowerBox inverter can be installed within one hour. “We are proud to unveil our latest Residential Energy Storage Solution – the PowerCube 2.0 plus PowerBox as a system approach,” said Frank Qi, General Manager of TrinaBEST. “We have conducted an in-depth analysis of the market and found our solution to meet the needs of the market [and] we believe it will help support the shift towards energy efficient and low-carbon future.” The lithium-ion phosphate 4.8 kWh PowerCube mini battery weighs in at 65 kg, the 7.2 kWh version (using three battery packs) or 9.6 kWh (four packs), weigh 95 kg and 120 kg respectively and can be used for on grid mode or as back up accompanied by the 230V, 3 kVA PowerBox. TrinaBEST’s Director of Sales and Marketing, Ray See (pictured) said the company is poised to expand the company’s presence in the Australian market, having established local sales and technical support earlier in 2016. TrinaBEST will be available through specialist supplier Mpower.
BatTRI-hub: an alternative battery ROBERT KERR, Associate Research Fellow at the Institute for Frontier Materials at BatTRI-hub is assessing the shortcomings of today’s lithium-ion batteries, in particular their performance in EVs (limited driving range, slow charging times, high cost, and high risk of fire). “The other large market for batteries is integration into stationary energy storage based on renewable energy generation. Here, the scale is much larger, however … it is primarily the costs associated with integrating MWhscale battery storage facilities that is prohibitive,” he says. BatTRI-hub is a joint facility between Deakin University and CSIRO with the ability to build and test credit-card sized pouch cells, a cell configuration that Kerr says “is much more representative of practical cell behaviour in comparison to coin cells”. The $3 million lab facility has the capability to prepare and assemble batteries using lithium and sodium metal electrodes – the ‘holy grail’ of electrode development. “These metallic electrodes contain the maximum energy density (energy per weight) possible, a vital step in the development of next-generation battery technologies such as lithium-sulfur and lithium-air,” he explained.
Cutting-edge research into a new type of polymeric electrolyte, PILBLOCs (polymerisable ionic liquid electrolyte block co-polymers) is underway using a facility for the scaled-up production of these polymers using the RAFT technique – a technique initially discovered by CSIRO. “The secret behind these materials lies in the level of structuring that can be achieved at the nano-scale to facilitate high levels of lithium ion-transport – something required for practical rates of discharge. “Both of these types of electrolyte materials are, however, unlikely to deliver any significant performance benefits if used in the current format Li-ion battery even after being fully optimised. The real advantages are the promise they have shown in their stability with lithium metal and their safety features.“ Commercialisation of these materials still has some way to go – there are many competing technologies currently being developed that are based on polymer electrolytes for safe Li-metal based batteries. But Kerr says none are able to perform at a comparable level to current Li-ion batteries at ambient and sub-ambient temperatures.
BATTERY STORAGE FOR ANY APPLICATION HETER POWER BOX Heter Power Box is a slim line wall mounted energy storage system. Power Box provides 7kWh of storage with 6000 cycle life at 80% DOD. This is an ideal storage system for new or retrofit installation.
Unit size 160 D x 480 W x 820H mm
NESS 5048 All - in One NESS 5048 features a 5kW hybrid inver ter,9.6kWh storage (expandable to 20kWh). 5048S has an UPS capability in the event of a grid failure.
All - in One NESS 3048 features a 3kW hybrid inverter, 4.8kWh storage (expandable to 20kWh). 3048S has an UPS capability in the event of a grid failure.
Unit size 480 D x 600 W x 1600H mm
Unit size 210 D x 1000 W x 562H mm *expandable to 20kWh
SPECIFICATION Storage Capacity Maximium Discharge Current Maximium Power Available (UPS Mode) DOD Cycle Life Replacement Warranty Performance Warranty Lifespan of LiFePO4
7 kWh 100A 5.6 kW 80% 6000 5 yrs 10 yrs 20 yrs
SPECIFICATION Nominal Capacity (kWh) 9.6 * Usable Capacity (kWh) 7.6 Nominal Output Power (kW) 4.6 Peak Power 4.6 Depth of Discharge 80% Cycle Life (cycles) 4000 Warrantied Life 5/7yrs (Optional) Lifespan 10 Years
Crystal Solar Energy Pty Ltd Enabling citizen powered energy market
*expandable to 20kWh
SPECIFICATION Nominal Capacity (kWh) 4.8 * Usable Capacity (kWh) 4 Nominal Output Power (kW) 3 Peak Power 4.0 Depth of Discharge 80% Cycle Life (cycles) 4000 Warrantied Life 5/7yrs (Optional) Lifespan 10Years
Ph: 1300 756 634 Email: email@example.com www.crystalsolarenergy.com.au
Solar for iconic town hall – with 30 degrees of difficulty Here, Dennis Rutzou tells us about the Melbourne municipality of Moreland that sits north of the city and prides itself on its sustainability credentials and vision to support a resilient community in an attractive, accessible and safe environment. BRUNSWICK TOWN HALL is an iconic Melbourne landmark that was built in 1876 and only survived the wrecker’s ball in 1974 after a local protest campaign. Although it earns its keep today as a popular social venue, the venue was one the top ten energy users in the municipality. This did not fit well with Moreland Council which was the third accredited carbon neutral council in Australia; however installing solar panels on the three storey historic building with a 30 degree slope on its corrugated iron roof presented more than a few challenges. Installers Envirogroup also faced the need to overcome the problem of potential traffic disruption, as the Town Hall is located on Sydney Road, Brunswick, one of Melbourne’s busiest north-south arterial roads, complete with tram tracks. Safety was also a major issue and required the installation of safety rails on the roof and harnesses for all the installers. The main roof area was also found to be insufficient to house enough conventional solar panels to generate the required energy level of 100 kWp and using the lower roof area was seen to be inefficient as it is subject to shadowing for part of the day. The eventual solution was to use the new High Efficiency PERC Mono Trina Solar 290 Wp panels that are more efficient than conventional panels. The final installation used 345 panels on the main roof which will generate 118 MWh per year and provide an annual CO2 reduction of 140 tonnes. More than 400 panels rated 260 Wp would have been needed to achieve the same energy output.
34 SUMMER 2016
Time savings and efficiency The more efficient panels not only reduced the number of panels that were required but also reduced the installation time, while obtaining more energy out of the available roof space. According to lead electrician on the install, Nick Garric it was the most difficult job he’s tackled in the seven years he has been an installer. “Our installation team members were in safety harnesses for the four week installation period and because of the number of panels, we had to lay them in a landscape pattern, rather than the usual portrait configuration. “This meant our roof access had to be up the 30 degree slope, rather than along the roof,” he explained. “Because of the age of the building and the roof, another difficulty we had to overcome
was in running the cables from the panels to the inverter. “Clearly the 290 Wp panels were the solution for us to get enough panels on the roof to
Trina Solar Trina Solar is a tier one world supplier of photovoltaic modules. Founded in 1997, it employs 15,000 people in 22 countries and has been listed on the New York Stock Exchange since 2006 and was declared the most bankable company in the 2016 Bloomberg Finance Report. Trina has shipped more than 15 GW of solar panels worldwide since 2007. In Australia Trina Solar has an R&D investment through support of the Australian National University and the University of NSW and is a major module supplier nationally to the commercial and domestic markets. www.trinasolar.com.au
generate the required level of energy and we
traffic in busy Sydney Road generates a high
efficiency with mono modules coupled with the
had no handling difficulties compared to the
level of road grime,” Garric said.
minimal price gap between the poly and the
standard 260 Wp panels. “Because they sit on a 30 degree slope the panels are largely self-cleaning, whereas if we had to use the lower flat roof areas there would have been significant soiling as the
Trina Solar Sales Manager Govind Kant said
mono modules will soon see mono modules
that the Brunswick Town Hall installation is a
becoming mainstream. The extra price on the
first for the 290 Wp solar panels in Australia.
mono modules is offset by the greater savings
“Although the standard poly modules are still a niche market, the rapid improvement in
on the balance of the system,” Govind Kant said.
Australian researcher receives top solar award Back in June this year Australian Pierre Verlinden, International Technical Director of Trina Solar, received the William R Cherry Award, one of the world’s most prestigious solar awards. Pierre is a Belgian born Australian whose association with Australia today is mainly through Trina’s research work at UNSW and ANU and ARENA on advanced PV technologies in his role as Trina’s chief scientist. The William R Cherry Award is named after a founder of the PV community and recognises the individual engineers or scientists who have made significant contributions. Verlinden is the third Australian to win the award and has had more than 35 years of experience in the solar field, both academically and with industry. Last year he delivered the Solar Oration in Canberra
at ANU’s Energy Change Institute open day. Pierre said: “We will continue to strive towards developing additional cutting-edge technologies while at the same time accelerating commercialisation. The goal remains widespread global adoption of solar energy for the betterment of our environment.” Verlinden has led a team of PV researchers and scientists to enhance Trina Solar’s key PV technologies through innovation that has resulted in several world records in cell and module efficiencies in recent years. He has also been pivotal in establishing high efficiency solar cell programs and fostering collaboration with international PV scholars and institutions, promoting the State Key Laboratory as one of the most advanced research centres in photovoltaics.
Sustainable savings with solar hot water Since 2003, Apricus has been known as specialists in the design and manufacture of the most cost effective, energy efficient and versatile, evacuated tube, solar hot water solutions for the residential market as well as scaleable, hot water solutions for commercial properties. Our high performing systems are designed for homeowners and organisations concerned about their environmental footprint and seeking the most efficient, sustainable way to manage rising energy costs for their properties.
For more details contact Apricus on 1300 277 428.
Engineers Without Borders Creating change through engineering education Engineers Without Borders Australia seeks to create meaningful change through humanitarian engineering, however that is just one aspect of the undertaking. Here Maja Gajic lends insight into specialised programs and their impact on communities. FOUNDED IN 2003, Engineers Without Borders seeks to be a catalyst for
The summit’s aim is to provide students with professional work
sector wide change through programs such as EWB Connect, which
experience while allowing them to develop a better understanding of
facilitates the provision of pro bono engineering services to community
the role of human cantered design and technology can play in creating
organisations. EWB also has a well-established, highly regarded national
change within communities. EWB partners with local non-governmental
education program for school and university students.
organisations to promote and facilitate two-way knowledge sharing.
The education program comprises several initiatives, in first year undergraduate courses, students all around Australia undertake the EWB challenge subject. This presents a design brief based on a real world scenario compiled with one of EWB’s partner organisation such as UNHCR in Zambia. Students then choose a problem to work on within a broad scope of areas from the design brief. The challenge subject is run nationally and internationally and winning reports are delivered to the partner organisation on the ground. I’ve tutored first year students in this subject for two years and am always impressed with the design solutions they come up with to some really tricky problems, remembering these are students in their first semester straight out of high school. Initially, they are often overwhelmed by having to solve problems in a developing country context but eventually they manage to get right into it and become very creative with their solutions. It is a great way for students to learn they can have a positive impact on the world from the very first semester of their university career.
Over the course of the summit, students undertake a design project in a team in collaboration with community partners. This project enables them to apply the engineering skills and knowledge learnt at university on a real world problem. Students on the summit undertake more than 80 hours of full time engineering work experience, accredited by Engineers Australia to count towards work experience courses. A team of experienced facilitators and mentors – academics and lecturers – attend each trip with the students, mentoring them through the process. Dr Daniel Edgington-Mitchell of Monash University said “The EWB Design Summit program is unparalleled within engineering education. As an academic on the Design Summit program, I have seen first hand the transformational power of the program. Students leave the program with an entirely changed perception of their role as engineers and as members of a global community.”
Solar energy project in Cambodia
Humanitarian design summit
One student who has been on the entire EWB journey through her
After the design challenge, students in their second or third year have
undergraduate course, majoring in Renewable Energy Systems, is Rebecca
the opportunity to participate in EWBs humanitarian design summit, an
Watts. She completed the design challenge at the Australian National
educational two-week study tour held in countries such as India, Nepal or
University in 2011 and was one of the first students to attend the design
summit in Cambodia.
36 SUMMER 2016
“These experiences inspired Rebecca to undertake her final year honours thesis with EWB to create a solar These experiences inspired Rebecca to undertake her final year honours thesis with EWB to create a solar energy project in Cambodia. As part of her thesis, she returned to Cambodia and installed two solar home systems and ran a solar energy education program within the community. Speaking about her experience, Rebecca said “I was particularly struck by the opportunity for solar energy technologies in rural Cambodia. The country has little or no existing electricity infrastructure and also faces the highest electricity costs in the region, particularly in rural areas.
energy project in Cambodia [and] she returned to Cambodia and installed two solar home systems and ran a solar energy education program within the community.”
“With the cost of solar energy technologies decreasing, there is huge potential for off-grid solar energy solutions to support low-carbon, sustainable development.”
Research projects The final aspect of EWBs education program offers students the opportunity to undertake final year research projects with EWB. Since 2007 the EWB humanitarian research program has enabled academics and students to use their skills and passions to produce valuable new knowledge and technologies with real impact for communities both
The community involvement throughout the design and installation process, combined with undergoing training in operation and maintenance, instates a sense of ownership and responsibility of the systems deployed. Importantly she has also been monitoring and evaluating the pilot systems to understand the impacts of her work, a factor often missing in solar home system programs in developing countries.
engineering and their solutions”.
Given the lack of significant electricity infrastructure in Cambodia and with around 80 per cent of the population living in rural areas Rebecca has shown that solar home systems have a huge potential in transforming the energy use in rural households due to their affordability and reliability. Rebecca’s work also demonstrates the deeper role engineering can play in solving problems in developing countries and creating positive and meaningful sector wide change.
And what about Rebecca? Since graduating as ANUs 2016
within Australia and overseas. EWB connects students and academics to community development organisations through collaborative research projects. These can be developed with EWB to match students’ interests and experience and there are many other projects offered with EWBs partner organisations with wide ranging topics such as: “The design of an appropriate and inclusive rice seed planter for rural Cambodia” and “Challenges faced in pro bono
Undergraduate Student of the Year, Rebecca has undertaken a 12-month placement in Cambodia as Project Facilitator on the Appropriate Technology Initiative. The initiative is a joint partnership between EWB, Beekeeper Parade (an Australian social enterprise) and Baby Tree Projects (a Cambodian and Australian NGO) with funding from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Rebecca is now managing a solar energy project at the same remote Cambodian community she visited on her design summit and for her final honours project. The project aims to increase access to affordable, clean and reliable energy for households that would otherwise have no electricity.
https://www.ewb.org.au/whatwedo/education-research/designsummit https://www.ewb.org.au/whatwedo/education-research/designsummit https://www.ewb.org.au/blog/solarenergyproject https://www.ewb.org.au/blog/solarenergyproject JHE article - https://www.ewb.org.au/jhe/index.php/jhe/issue/viewIssue/8/1
RMIT University student Maja Gajic is designing a hybrid solar photovoltaic/thermal collector as part of her PhD in Engineering. She is a volunteer with the It’s Time Foundation which delivers renewable power solutions to remote schools in Fiji with the dual objective of reducing carbon emissions and enhancing education in target communities. www.itstime.org.au
These international volunteer placements are what EWB is traditionally renowned for and each year several highly sought after positions are available to people passionate about using their technical skills and experience to achieve a positive impact on marginalised communities. Rebecca explained “As Project Facilitator for EWB’s Appropriate Technology initiative, I am working in a team of engineers and professionals based in Cambodia. From bio-digesters, to rainwater tanks and professional skills development training, the team is working on innovative, appropriate and sustainable projects and programs with local Cambodian partners. “There are similar EWB teams working in Vietnam and Timor Leste. Together we work towards a common vision to create a world where everyone has access to the services they need to lead a life of opportunity, free from poverty.” Rebecca’s work in Cambodia, which she has recently published in the peer reviewed and open access Journal of Humanitarian Engineering, has included extensive community consultation to find out the needs and priorities of the community.
Solar & Storage 37
PV installations and STC creators Year to date weekly average of Small-scale Technology Certificate creation stands at 298,000 STCs, 9.0 per cent short of the Regulator's target of 327,300 per week.
Small-scale Solar PV systems creating STCs
Top 10 Small-scale Technology Certificates (STC) creators (2016)
SGU systems creating certificates
As at 30 September 2016 (includes STCs pending registration). SGU solar (deemed)
Total YTD ACT NSW
Installed kW YTD
Market Average system share size (kW)
To end Q3
1 Formbay Trading
2 Emerging Energy Solutions Group
3 Greenbank Environmental
4 P&N Pty
5 True Value Solar
6 Powerark solar
7 Green Energy Trading
8 Advance Finance Solutions
10 Origin Energy
Source: Green Energy Markets
Electric Vehicles Global sales of electric vehicles Up-to-date data on the sale on EVs is not readily available; however as of July 2016 the sale of Plug-in EVs is reported as follows: Europe
Registration of highway-capable plug-in electric cars by model in Australia between 2010 and March 2016 came in at 3,487 led by the Mitsubishi Outlander. Norway boasts the highest percentage of EVs which number more than 15 per cent of its passenger vehicles. Chinaâ€™s EV fleet is growing rapidly, and sales worldwide are increasing dramatically as is production and planned production.
38 SUMMER 2016
r.e.sponsible for your success.
Globally minded, locally focused. In September 2016, Solarmatrix became BayWa r.e. Solar Systems Pty Ltd Solarmatrix has been one of the leading system suppliers in the photovoltaic market in Australia, supplying high quality products to local, independent installers - the foundation of a robust and healthy solar industry. Now as an integrated part of a global organization they provide even more buying power backed by unrivaled local expertise.
BayWa r.e. renewable energy are fast becoming the world leaders in solar PV, wind, bioenergy and geothermal energy generation and are ideally positioned to meet one of the biggest challenges of our generation: delivering reliable and clean energy. For more on the BayWa r.e. renewable energy network please visit: www.baywa-re.com
REVEALING FIGURES Attitudes towards climate in Australia in 2016 Of the 77% that say climate change is occurring:
90% believe human activity is at least partly the cause
77% say climate change is occurring ... up from
“I trust the science that suggests the climate is changing due to human activities”
39% say it’s the main cause
“Australians, in record numbers, accept
climate change is happening, and even more
can see economic opportunity in the clean
Energy Policy Support for coal and gas is in sharp decline
energy future they want to be part of.
John Connor, The Climate Institute
Solar support up from:
Preferred sources of energy:
84% in 2015
86% include solar energy
82% in 2014
70% include wind
81% in 2012
Source: Climate of the Nation 2016. Attitudinal research by The Climate Institute, www.climateinstitute.org.au, 2000 survey participants across all demographics across Australia
Electricity transformation If networks bought energy services from customers with distributed energy resources (solar and storage systems), it could: Customers, not utilities,
4 Replace $16.2 billion of network investment 4 Avoid $18.6 billion in cross subsidies between energy customers; and 4 Provide $16.7 billion in economic benefit to the community. Source: Analysis by ENA and CSIRO’s Electricity Network Transformation Roadmap.
will make more than $224 billion – or more than a quarter – of all
energy system investment decisions between now
John Bradley, ENA
Jinko is well known for some significant projects in Australia: The 20 MW Royalla Solar Farm in the ACT completed in September 2014 using 83,000 Jinko modules was Australia’s largest operational solar farm at the time of construction. Then there’s the 1.06 MW solar power system featuring Jinko 315W modules and ABB inverters at Brisbane Markets, one of Australia’s largest privately owned roof-top projects. But a more unusual installation caught our eye, a 20 MW solar farm that shares space with a watermelon farm (pictured). Completed in 2016 the 20 MW agricultural PV power plant in Zhejiang, China is “growing delicious watermelons and producing clean energy at the same time.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lf2tN0oaX8A
WHEN IT CAME TO SECURELY ATTACHING 5.38 MW OF SOLAR PANELS TO THEIR ROOF,
TOYS“R”US DIDN’T PLAY AROUND.
American made S-5-PV kits and clamps are the industry standard in metal roof mounting hardware. That’s why the biggest names in business rely on our solar mounting solutions. They know that it’s only secure, if it’s S-5! secure.
Learn more at www.S-5.com or call 888-825-3432.
OFF-GRID IN ACTION
Lady Elliot Island Enertech Solar recently completed an unusual off-grid installation for an island eco resort that wanted to reduce its daily consumption of 680 litres of diesel that powered the islandâ€™s generators. Enertech wired an entire system from scratch and although it works superbly the installation came with more than a few challenges. Here Design Engineer Peter Libretto tells the story.
LADY ELLIOT ISLAND is a tiny but important speck in the Coral Sea. Situated at the southern end of the Barrier Reef it is the breeding habitat for hundreds of green and loggerhead turtles who return home each year to lay thousands of eggs. The picturesque island surrounded but crystal clear waters also houses a small eco resort which today is powered by solar and storage technologies. The story started six years ago when six SMA sunny island 5048 inverters were installed with a multi cluster box 12, two banks of German 3200Ah and a 21 kW solar array. This provided an effective energy system for the eco-resort. Over the following years we added a further 70 kW of solar with SMA Tripowers on a distributed network along with three more sunny Islands and two German BAE Tubular Gel 3600Ah battery banks. As a result, we have reduced the daily diesel consumption from around 680 litres a day to around 90 litres a day which has had a dramatic effect on the island. Other than the peaceful silence that comes once a diesel generator is switched off, the financial saving has enabled the Resort to fund other projects such as upgrading the desalination plant, complete refurbishment of guest accommodation, restaurant, swimming pool, revegetation programs and more. Due to the resounding success of the solar and storage projects on Lady Elliot Island, they decided to keep up with ever-increasing energy demand by boosting the battery storage capacity. However, due to long lead times with Gel battery manufacturers, we took the step of introducing a new technology, the Aquion salt-water battery.
42 SUMMER 2016
Salt-water battery Aqueous Hybrid Ion (AHIâ„˘) chemistry is made from abundant, nontoxic materials; the batteries contain no heavy metals or toxic chemicals and are non-flammable and non-explosive, so they are clean as well as safe. AHI chemistry is composed of a saltwater electrolyte, manganese oxide cathode, carbon titanium phosphate composite anode, and synthetic cotton separator. The battery uses non-corrosive intercalation reactions at the anode and cathode.
Above: Aerial photo of Lady Elliott Island Below: 36 stacks of Aquion salt water batteries alongside the German Gel lead acid batteries
Combining technologies The challenge that we faced was that although there had been great success with Aquion in America, no one had ever introduced this new completely different technology into an existing Lead Acid battery system. Also, the system featured the SMA SI5048, which is now discontinued, in place of the new SMA Sunny Island 8.0H. So we needed to install new battery technology and new battery chargers into an existing lead acid discontinued inverter system. Aquion batteries come in stacks rated at 48V, unlike the traditional lead acid cells of this size in 2 volts. So with 36 stacks rated at around 2Ah per stack, we had to parallel all stacks together in a combiner box which we designed and manufactured off the island. This box provided circuit protection for each stack and combined all of the positives and negatives on separate bus bars. Each stack passes through an electronic box which collects all of the data such as current, temperate etc and relays it to the system BMS which in turn sends data to the new cluster of sunny Island 8.0H. After wiring each stack, three SMI boxes, combiner box and sunny islands we had to completely reconnect the communication system within the multi cluster making the new SI8.0H the master cluster. As a result, the system was reconfigured and immediately connected to the site loads and existing lead acid banks. Within 12 hours all four battery banks were showing state of charge within 1 per cent of each other and balancing the loads superbly. After a week of testing and running, the anticipated generator run time now is expected to be less than four hours a day.
Peter told Solar & Storage “We have been working on Lady Elliot Island for around four years now, so it was very satisfying to see through to completion the installation of the 36 S30 Aquion salt water battery stacks. “It has been fantastic to be part of the success on this unspoilt Barrier reef island that is so peaceful and picturesque. The noisy and polluting diesel generators spoilt the ambience and were very much at odds with the island’s serenity, but all that has now changed and tranquillity has been restored.” www.enertechsolar.com.au
Exploded view of an Aquion Battery stack
2017 Solar and Storage Conference and Exhibition The solar, storage and smart energy conference Wednesday May 3 and Thursday May 4, 2017 Platinum Sponsors
5000 delegates are expected at the 2017 Show – the largest of its kind – displaying the latest technologies and innovations in smart storage, inverters and batteries, energy efficiency, lighting, sustainability and the built environment. Product launches and insights, 100+ Exhibitor displays, networking events, and three specialist free-to-attend conference streams: Smart Energy and Energy Storage; Industry and Policy and Professional Development.
For more information contact: Brett Thompson Sales Manager +61 402 181 250 firstname.lastname@example.org
Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre
David McCarthy Event Manager +61 466 810 373 email@example.com
*** More than 60 per cent of exhibition space has already been booked. Companies that want to market themselves as smart energy providers to the 5000 delegates expected at the 2017 Show need to take action soon or they may miss out ***
FR EE T AT O TE ND
Flexible solidstate hydrogen energy storage Researchers at the UNSW Materials Energy Research Laboratory in nanoscale (MERLin) are improving the cost and performance of 1st generation hydride materials and demonstrating the benefits of hydrogen-powered transport, as explained by Nicholas Loeve. ONE HUNDRED PER CENT RENEWABLES – we are heading there at an increasingly faster pace, but the challenge still remains. How do we entirely displace fossil fuels and still offer energy flexibility? Solid, liquid or gaseous fossil fuels can provide high energy density, are relatively easy to store and distribute, and can be used to deliver electrical, thermal or chemical energy where and when we need it. Renewable replacements such as solar or wind only provide an intermittent electrical energy flux. So in order for renewables to become the preferred option we need to expand our energy storage options beyond just batteries, and be able to access energy in different forms for a broad range of applications and timeframes. Hydrogen is the most energetic conventional fuel, and it can be used to generate electrical and thermal energy with a fuel cell, or can be directly combusted to power systems that currently rely on natural gas or liquid hydrocarbon fuels. Most of the hydrogen produced today is a by-product of refineries, but hydrogen can also be generated from water and renewable electricity in a process called electrolysis. Most importantly, the
only by-product of using hydrogen for energy applications is water, and so the waste product is also the feedstock and the fuel cycle is a closed-loop. A barrier to greater use of hydrogen for energy is the perceived lack of safe, efficient storage. Hydrogen is the lightest gas, and traditional hydrogen-based energy systems have relied on highly compressed gas (up to 700 bar) or cryogenic liquefaction (-240°C), both of which have limited practicality due to required infrastructure and safety issues.
High energy density hydrides A family of materials, known as hydrides, provide an alternative where hydrogen can be stored and released from the solid-state material by controlling temperature and pressure. These materials offer much higher energy density than batteries, provide long-cycle life (10,000+ cycles) with no deep-cycling issues, are safe due to self-regulated gas release, and can be charged in 20–30 minutes. The best part is that these materials are available now! At the Materials Energy Research Laboratory in nanoscale (MERLin) at UNSW Australia, we are working on improving the cost and performance of first generation hydride materials, and are also developing a nanotechnology-based approach to take advantage of the very high capacity hydride materials that can rival the energy density of liquid fossil fuels.
Servicing freight transport Recent cost reductions and improved performance of lithium-ion batteries has resulted in rapid growth of the electric vehicle (EV) market, from cars and light commercial vehicles through to personal transport with electric bicycles and scooters. But let’s think about the very large freight transport networks that modern global trade relies on. For long-haul shipping by road, rail or sea, batteries are unlikely to provide the energy density required for heavy transportation by cargo ship or even a road train. Not only that, but large transport fleets need rapid refuelling capabilities, which will be problematic if recharge time is on the order of hours or days. Fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEV) still have the benefits of an electric drive train, but they can also be refuelled with hydrogen in minutes.
44 SUMMER 2016
The spin on Hy-Cycle At MERLin we demonstrate the benefits of hydrogen-powered transport
The future for hydrogen-based energy systems
with Hy-Cycle, Australia’s first hydrogen-powered electric bicycle. The
Hydrogen-based energy systems will undoubtedly become an important
bicycle uses solid-state hydrogen storage and a fuel cell to power an electric motor for 150 km, and it can be recharged in approximately 20 minutes. A comparable lithium-ion system provides only 50 km of motorised power, and takes four to eight hours for a full recharge. Depending on the energy-use scenario, hydrogen can deliver greater flexibility than batteries or other forms of electrical-only energy storage. For example, in the manufacturing sector there is often a significant heat and power demand, and factories often need to be able to quickly generate very high temperatures, typically in a furnace or a boiler. This type of energy demand will be difficult to meet efficiently with electrical power only. Fuel cells can operate with high efficiency as a combined heat and power module, but hydrogen can also replace natural gas for combustion in furnaces and boilers, often with very minor modifications to existing equipment. To demonstrate this energy flexibility, at MERLin we developed the
addition to our energy storage capabilities into the future. Data from the US Department of Energy shows that using solid-state hydrogen storage is cost competitive with other energy storage technologies like lithiumion batteries, especially at larger scales, and this cost will continue to fall as the technology starts to move away from research labs and the awareness of the potential of hydrogen as a clean energy vector grows. The systems we have developed at MERLin can be adapted to meet a range of energy storage requirements – from a bicycle to residential energy storage or industrial heat and power. There are no fundamental limitations for scaling up. Real-world demonstrations of the technologies highlight the flexibility that hydrogen-based energy systems can offer, and with new commercial partnerships being formed, we see a bright, clean future ahead. Nicholas Loeve is a PhD Student at the Materials Energy Research
H2Q – a portable, hydrogen-powered BBQ. Using the same solid-state
Laboratory in nanoscale (MERLin), in the School of Chemical Engineering,
hydrogen storage as that used on Hy-Cycle, H2Q uses catalytic combustion
UNSW Australia. He is developing solid-state electrolytes for next
of hydrogen to provide flame-less heating for cooking, with the same
generation batteries and hydrogen storage applications. MERLin is
heating control you would get from LPG or natural gas burner, but the
led by Associate Professor Francois Aguey-Zinsou, with a focus on
only emission is water.
the properties of light metals and their hydrides at the nanoscale, for
So you can jump on a Hy-Cycle, ride to a nice spot, and use H2Q to cook your lunch, all with the same high-density energy storage system.
hydrogen storage applications. For more information see http://www.merlin.unsw.edu.au/
SOLAR & STORAGE MAGAZINE ADVERTISERS’ SUPPLEMENTARY MATERIAL
products + services
Fronius ensures energy security through proactive solutions
The generation and use of solar energy at home has changed radically. Previously, feed-in tariffs were considered the most attractive aspect of solar energy; today however, most people want to generate energy for self-consumption. Since batteries are still an emerging technology the focus is currently on optimising usage of the PV system to ensure energy is used as it’s produced.
Solar Online Support tool allows FSPs to initiate the repair process directly from the system site, 24/7; while Fronius technical experts are available to provide support via the Fronius Technical Support Hotline Monday – Friday, 9.00am-5.00pm. • Fastest service plan on the market – FSPs are given the tools to deliver the fastest service possible.
Optimisation As an FSP applying Fronius Proactive Solutions installers can also assist customers in setting up a cost-effective system that automatically and reliably switches on household consumers during periods of high solar energy generation: • Inbuilt intelligent energy management – All Fronius inverters feature an intelligent energy management function which can control the switching on and off of electrical devices. • Fronius SnapINverter Smart Packages – Fronius SnapINverter Smart Packages provide free inbuilt monitoring. This can be used to educate customers and help change their consumption behaviours. • Training – FSPs receive ongoing training and support from Fronius to help optimise and operate PV systems, setup the Fronius Energy Management Relay function, and educate customers.
Flexibility How can you ensure energy security? Through Fronius’ Proactive Solutions approach, every Fronius Service Partner (FSP) is able to maintain their customers’ PV systems ensuring they always benefit from maximum uptime, maximum optimisation and maximum flexibility.
Uptime System uptime is the most crucial characteristic in ensuring energy security. Every Fronius inverter is designed to ensure maximum uptime thanks to: • Onsite service capabilities – Only FSPs are eligible to repair Fronius inverters while on site, without the need to wait for replacement units. • Free monitoring and system alerts – FSPs are able to troubleshoot remotely and diagnose the problem without the need to go to site. • 24/7 technical support – The Fronius
Fronius products are designed to meet the demands of today - and tomorrow. Fronius ensures every device is flexible in its application and primed to embrace emerging technologies and industry requirements: • Multi Flow Technology – Fronius inverters with Multi Flow Technology can control different energy flows in parallel and in all directions. • Smart Grid Ready – Fronius inverters can be integrated into external management systems, have export limitation capabilities and are open to power control by third party devices. They are therefore suitable to work in micro grids. They can also communicate with consumers and grid operators to ensure a stable mains supply. Understanding how uptime, optimisation and flexibility work over time and in conjunction with each other can help ensure energy security for customers. Furthermore, by using Fronius’ Proactive Solutions approach to customer care, FSPs are able to turn one-time customers into repeat, lifelong customers. Find out more about Fronius solutions via www.fronius.com.au
Opinions expressed on this page are not necessarily those of the Australian Solar Council Opinions expressed on this page are not necessarily those of the Australian Solar Council 46 SUMMER 2016
Solar & Storage 49
SOLAR & STORAGE MAGAZINE ADVERTISERS’ SUPPLEMENTARY MATERIAL
Solar farm post installation always on critical path The new wave of large capacity Solar PV Farm Projects supported by
• Suitability of unit to terrain and environment (e.g. hot, dry, dusty conditions)
ARENA is seeing interest and construction of plants from 10 MW to
• Ease of maintenance and spare parts
100 MW in size. The number of posts (mini piles) to support the vast number of panel
• Local product support • Resale value of equipment on completion of project
frames range from 800 to more than 200,000.
The driven post option has the best verticality control along with good
What doesn’t change is the pressure from the developer to get the project under way in the shortest possible time and complete installation
correlation between soil conditions and energy/penetration rate. This
within allowable timeframes.
allows the operator to observe changes in soils and drive pattern that
Once the project is awarded, detailed design and geotechical studies
could indicate geology variance across the site.
are carried out along with confirmation of post size and depth. Then
An alternate to driven posts are the screw in posts
comes test drives along with test loading to ensure the posts will
This method uses an excavator mount system that is more readily
withstand the vertical and uplift forces imposed on the PV panel frame
available but has a big drawback in terms of verticality control and
Once finalised the developer or EPC contractor requires the posts to be
The nature of this screw type method also disturbs the soil as it
installed in the quickest time. At this point the Installation equipment is
penetrates and additional testing or monitoring will have to be adopted
required along with an experienced installation contractor.
to correlate soils changes with auger blade disturbance.
Based on panel suppliers, design and soil conditions, many prefer a driven post to support the panels.
Whichever method is adopted the production pressure will invariably follow to ensure optimum production of posts. Therefore it is important
Selection of this post driving equipment has to take into account:
for developers and EPC contractors to factor in the type and availability of
• Desired productivity i.e. number of posts to be installed per day per
these specific custom built rigs for solar post installation and select a unit
that meets the demand of solar PV projects.
• Verticality and positional tolerance
For more information contact PILECOM Pty Ltd, Agents for Orteco Solar Post Drivers on 08 9240 6388 (Perth and Sydney base).
• Availability (custom built units)
Clean and affordable energy for everyone. The latest generation of sonnenBatterie has arrived! Much more than just a battery, the new generation of sonnenBatterie is an intelligent energy management system which combines a compact and sleek design with proven cutting edge technology from the market leader in lithium battery storage systems. A sonnenBatterie comes as a complete, fully integrated storage solution including battery modules, inverter and smart energy management system – supplied in one 2015
100 Global Cleantech
TOP 100 COMPANY
• Flexible, modular design with storage sizes from 2 kWh to 16 kWh
Global Cleantech 100 'Company of the Year Europe & Israel'
• Designed for simple and quick installation • 100 % 'Made in Germany' quality
sonnen is the winner of the Global Cleantech 100 award for Europe and Israel in recognition of the company's
We are standing by to answer your questions.
position as one of the most innovative
Call us on +61 1300 867 856
and influential developers of energy
Send us an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
Or visit us online at www.sonnen.com.au
• Sales and marketing support for sonnenBatterie partners • Market-leading warranty of 10,000 cycles
Save up to ur 80 % of yo bill! y electricit
Energy Storage Council Certified Training Program - Design and Install The Energy Storage Council – Australia’s peak industry body for the energy storage industry – is pleased to bring you the Certified Energy Storage Design and Install program. This new program developed by the Energy Storage Council focuses on all the essential elements of on-grid and off-grid battery installations. The delivery of the program has been described as very timely and necessary for the storage industry that is rapidly gaining pace, with more
homeowners wanting to benefit from their PV systems after sunset.
Certified designers and installers will be matched with manufacturers
The ESC has partnered with the Canberra Institute of Technology to conduct this training for storage specialists across Australia. Training Modules are contained to four key areas: • Energy Storage Overview (a one-day, face-to-face day course) • ESC Certified Designer Course (that can be conducted online) • ESC Certified Installer Course (face-to-face and for licensed electricians only) • ESC Certified Design and Install Course (which combines modules 2 and 3, takes four days and is for licensed electricians only) The ESC will certify graduates of those courses, who in turn will be able to proudly display the ESC Certified Installer Logo.
and distributors looking for a professional design, installation and maintenance workforce Australia-wide through a registration process. Those successfully completing the training courses to become Certified Battery Installers will be supported over the long-term with standards updates and alerts, enabling them to maintain their skills and competitive advantage. Further professional development will be provided annually to maintain the membership, and course content will be updated annually. Stay tuned for more details on the Certified Energy Storage Design and Install program which will soon be launched.
Solar PV Master Installer Program = 100 Express CPD points Solar PV Installers who are keen to simply “get on with the job” can achieve just that by participating in the Solar Council’s Master Installer Program. Specially developed by industry experts and launched just recently, the Solar PV Master Installer package has been designed to provide all the necessary business tools. Training content includes Solar Essentials, Solar Gold and a webinar presented by Glen Morris. After signing up, participants are given a password to enable access to commence the training. Installers can train online, wherever they are, and at a time that is convenient to them. The online training content will take approximately 12 hours and once all training is complete Master Installers gain 100 Express CPD Points. Master Installers will automatically receive notification of Standards Updates and other regulation changes, news alerts, new products and advice relevant to the industry. Being the first to know puts Master Installers in poll position, ahead of the pack. Successful participants can also proudly display the Master Installer logo which strengthens their business brand in the eyes of consumers. They will stand out in the crowd – and let’s face it, everyone wants an edge on their competitors.
48 SUMMER 2016
Master Installers will also be listed on the Solar Council’s Master Installer customer map which includes a simple-to-operate postcode finder that effectively provides free sales leads. The postcode finder will appear on the Solar and Energy Storage Council website which will soon be relaunched following a major upgrade. Industry compliance is simplified under the Master Installer program whose participants will be recognised as businesses that are providing not just expert services but also value. As one installer commented ”The Master Installer program looks like it will make life a lot easier for installers. They will be right up-to-date on all processes, developments and products, and can use the badge of Master Installer for sales leads which as we all know are vital to sustain business.” The Master Installer program costs $330 (inc GST). Contact Anna Washington on 0409 802 707 or email email@example.com
AUSTRALIAN SOLAR COUNCIL MASTER INSTALLER PROGRAM The Australian Solar Council has launched a major new initiative to promote quality solar installers â€“ the Master Installer Program. 4 J oin the Master Installer Program, complete the training and be recognised immediately as a quality solar installer. se the Master Installer logo to strengthen your 4 U business brand
4 Get listed on our Master Installer customer map 4 1 00 Express CPD Points â€“ train online, wherever you are, whenever it suits 4 G et access to latest updates on new products, standards and regulation changes Join today. Just $330 (including GST). Find more information, visit www.solar.org.au or email firstname.lastname@example.org Join the Master Installer Program and help us promote quality solar installations.
SOLAR & ENERGY STORAGE Industry Events Energy Storage India Conference and Expo
Want to view a bigger list of solar and storage industry conferences being staged across the world? Visit www.enfsolar.com
Thursday 12 and Friday 13 January, 2017
SNEC 11th International Photovoltaic Power Generation Conference & Exhibition
4th International Conference and Exhibition on Energy Storage
Conference: April 17-20, 2017, Kerry Hotel Pudong, Shanghai
and Microgrids, Mumbai, India
Exhibition: April 19-21, 2017, Shanghai New International Expo
Energy Storage Technologies and Applications, Microgrid, off-grid
Solutions and Rural Electrification
The SNEC Scientific Conference provides a platform for the world’s PV
experts and scientists to showcase and share the latest developments in
10th International PV Power Generation Expo Wednesday 1 to Friday 3 March, 2017
solar energy technologies. Professor Martin Green of UNSW is honorary chairman. 1500 exhibitors, 150,000 visitors (2016). www.snec.org.cn
Japan’s largest B-to-B international show of the PV industry, the latest
2017 Solar and Energy Storage Conference and Exhibition
technologies, materials, manufacturing technologies, and solar cells/
Wednesday May 3 and Thursday May 4, 2017
modules will be exhibited from across the globe. www.pvexpo.jp
The Solar Show Africa 2017
Melbourne Conference and Exhibition Centre ‘The solar, storage and smart energy conference” The one show run by industry for industry devoted to clean energy. Solar and storage innovation on show – all the cutting-edge products
Tuesday March 28 and Wednesday March 29, 2017
and services, along with key players and a top line-up of industry guest
Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg
speakers under the one roof for the convenience of the 5000 delegates
The Solar Show Africa, co-located with the 20th annual Power &
expected to turn up. Product launches, previews, industry insights and
Electricity World Africa boasts 7000 attendees, 300 exhibitors and 300
announcements, networking and the chance to catch up with colleagues
speakers and helps shape the regional energy market.
from Australia. www.solar.org.au.
For more information see pages 15 and 43.
Smart Energy Roadshows Monday February 27 to Friday March 3 2017 The Solar Council and Energy Storage Council is presenting a series of roadshows that will attract up to 500 attendees and cover: • Smart Energy – What is it and how does it help the customer? • Stand-alone power system design and install essentials, and • Understanding Battery Technology
Glen Morris will once again host the roadshow series which target solar installers and system designers.
Dates Perth – Monday February 27 Adelaide – Tuesday February 28 Melbourne – Wednesday March 1 Sydney – Thursday March 2 Gold Coast – Friday March 3
C Po PD in att for a ts en ll de es
If you are interested in sponsoring these roadshows and putting your brand before 500 installers and designers, contact Brett Thompson on 0402 181 250 or email email@example.com www.solar.org.au
50 SUMMER 2016
Solar industry Positive Quality™ and performance THE AUSTRALIAN SOLAR COUNCIL’S Positive Quality™
The Positive Quality™ program admits and
program sets rigorous standards that ensure
endorses manufacturers that are independently
manufacturers who achieve and maintain high
tested and verified through plant visits. The
standards are singled out and recognised.
initial assessment consists of a company’s entire
Three prominent panel makers: Jinko, Opal Solar and Perlight Solar meet those high standards and proudly display the Positive Quality™ logo, a symbol
manufacturing processes undergoing independent and intensive inspection and testing. This is carried out by the Solar Council’s specially
of manufacturing excellence, which sends a signal of
appointed Positive Quality™ specialists in a three
confidence to consumers.
step process: Certification check and compliance
Participating manufacturers are fully recognised,
with IEC and Australian standards; Factory inspection
consumers enjoy peace of mind and the industry’s
with a 60-point check; and a Product quality check:
reputation is strengthened, delivering Positive
appearance, IV, EL, Hi-Pot, and leakage current.
Quality™ for all. Australian consumers and businesses can have confidence in the quality of the solar panels they are installing by looking out for the Positive Quality™
Positive Quality™ participants’ premises are then inspected at random every 12 weeks to ensure the continuity of those high standards. All solar PV manufacturers of high quality can participate.
Trustmark. The Solar Council developed the program because
Contact Positive Quality™ Manager
the generic appearance of panels makes it difficult to
Brett Thompson on 0402 181 250,
determine good from bad, unless an identification
email firstname.lastname@example.org or
mark denotes otherwise. A logo that signifies
By displaying the Positive Quality™ logo solar companies convey high standards in panel manufacturing to industry and consumers
Environmental Certificate Traders www.tradeingreen.com.au
1300 894 799
Online lodgement or manual, the choice is yours
3, 10 & 20 day terms for unregistered STCs and VEECs
Bonus and best price options for extended terms
Next day payment terms for registered certificates
Great Customer Service
Trade In Green is a registered agent with the Office of the Renewable Energy Regulator, we are accredited under the Victorian Energy Efficiency Scheme and the NSW Energy Savings Scheme. We are one of the leading traders across a broad range of environmental certificates. Visit our website and trade with confidence.
Solar Council Corporate Members For full listing of Solar Council Corporate Members see www.solar.org.au
Diamond Members Greenbank Environmental
Gold Corporate Members ABB
Risen Energy (Australia)
All Grid Energy
Silver Corporate Members DNV-GL
LG Electronics Australia
EnviroGroup Rheem Australia
Environmental Property Services
SSE Australia Green Energy Trading
Our Energy Company
SunPower Corporation Australia
Trina Solar (Australia) Trade in Green
True Value Solar Power Diverter
SUMMER ADVERTISING CONTENT Advertiser
BayWa r.e. Solar Systems
Crystal Solar Energy
Ecoult EPC Solar Fronius LG Chem
Inside Front Cover 29 Outside Back Cover Inside Back Cover
www.ecoult.com www.epcsolar.com.au www.fronius.com www.lgesspartner.com
One Stop Warehouse
R & J Batteries
Trade in Green
52 SUMMER 2016
/ Perfect Welding / Solar Energy / Perfect Charging
MAXIMUM EFFICIENCY IS POSSIBLE. NOW THAT WE ARE FORGING NEW PATHS WITH THE COMPACT FRONIUS ECO PROJECT INVERTER.
Fronius Eco: 25.0 and 27.0 kW Compact, efficient and suitable for outdoor use: the Fronius Eco string inverter is the perfect answer to the demands of large-scale systems. / Lightweight design and compact dimensions make delivery and installation easy. / Unrestricted use indoors and in unsheltered outdoor locations owing to the IP 66 protection class. / Quick and easy installation thanks to the Fronius Power Package system solution. Interested? Visit www.fronius.com