Overwhelming community support for a battery storage trial in the Mandurah suburb of Meadow Springs, Western Australia has pushed the trial forward three months, commencing today.
The original go-live date for the battery was scheduled to be early in the new year but has been brought forward to today after residents snapped up the 52 spots available.
PowerBank, a joint initiative between Synergy and Western Power with the help of the City of Mandurah, is the first time a utility-scale battery has been integrated into an already established major metropolitan network in Australia.
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A 105kW (420kWh) Tesla battery has been connected to the electricity grid in Meadow Springs, allowing households with rooftop solar panels to maximise their existing grid connection.
At a cost of $1 per day, each customer participating in the 24-month trial will be able to virtually store up to eight kWh of excess power generated during the day from their solar PV systems in the battery.
They will then be able to draw electricity back from the PowerBank during peak time without having to outlay upfront costs for a behind the meter battery storage system.
Homes taking part in the trial will not be locked into the program, which will allow them continuing flexibility and choice in deciding how they meet their individual electricity needs.
Customers will be billed monthly and will receive a quarterly activity statement from Synergy to advise them of their savings made under the trial.
Western Australian Energy Minister Ben Wyatt says for customers with solar panels, this is a simple opportunity that uses the existing network connection to their home, requires zero augmentation to their connection, and delivers savings and flexibility to suit their needs.
“Investing in battery storage across the grid is a more cost-efficient way of managing the growth in residential solar instead of traditional infrastructure spends like substation or transformer upgrades,” he says.
“It is also currently a cheaper and a far better community solution to hundreds or thousands of behind the meter individual household batteries.”
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