On Friday afternoon Tesla Motors and French wind farm developer Neoen were awarded the tender for the South Australian battery system as part of the South Australian Governments energy security plan. The system will have a capacity of 129 MW hours and will be paired with Neoens Hornsdale 200MW wind farm. The purpose of the battery system is to provide energy when renewable energy isn’t available, i.e. when there is no wind.
The timing of the announcement couldn’t have come at a better time as this last week South Australia observed a curious situation where low cost renewable generation was more available than the week prior however average spot prices increased. The reasons for this was increased intensity and frequency of price spikes driven by the intermittent nature of wind generation. In previous weeks generation was supported by gas which is not intermittent and despite its marginal cost being significantly higher than wind the predictable nature of gas resulted in a lower average cost. The battery technology is specifically designed to mitigate this problem.
Whilst 129 MW hours of battery is not sufficient to smooth out all of South Australia’s problems it is an exciting move forward and Edge Energy Services are very pleased to see this project going ahead!