SOLAR PLUS BATTERY - A COMMUNITY FIRST
- Number and type of panels: about 4000
- Orientation of panels: fixed north facing
- Total DC capacity of farm: 1.8 Mw
- AC output of farm: 1.2 Mw
- Area of land: approximately 2.2 hectares
The Goulburn community owned solar farm will be the first of its kind in Australia. Not only will the solar farm pump renewable energy into the grid, but installing a battery will allow the project to sell into the grid at the most financially advantageous time of the day (usually the afternoon), but will also be used to stabilise the grid when it’s needed – and be paid a premium for that!
- Storage capacity of battery: 400 kW, 800 kWh
- Connection point: North west corner of the property
- Line voltage at connection: 33 KV
Sale of Electricity
There are several ways output from the farm can be sold, all through the grid:
In this method, energy is sold to one or more “loads” (normally large institutions, businesses, government agencies) at a fixed price over a fixed term. The institution may take all or part of the total output of the farm.
- Pros: Certainty of revenue stream over fixed period (up to 5-10 years); if not fully subscribed, some output can still be sold through options 2 and 3
- Cons: Price is normally lower than what can be achieved through other methods
The output of the farm is bought by a retailer and then on-sold to its customers as “Green Power”. Customers could be limited to people in the region (including Co-op members) as a first option and then others if not fully subscribed.
- Pros: Certainty of revenue stream over fixed period (up to a year); members can purchase farm output from the retailer;
- Cons: Price is normally lower than what can be achieved through other methods; customers might have to change retailers to the participating retailer.
Output is sold on the spot wholesale market through a broker.
- Pros: On average, a considerably higher revenue stream than the first two options; less negotiation required, so easier to implement quickly; battery allows sale of energy at peak price points in the late afternoon.
- Cons: The wholesale price changes every half hour, so revenue projections are more difficult; members do not have opportunity to purchase energy from the farm; Options 1 and 2 can be chosen at a later date.
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