Earlier this year we reported on residential battery technology. One of the issues is the size of the batteries, making them sometimes impractical for smaller units and flats. Communal batteries could be the answer.
A residential battery storage trial is now running in the suburb of Alkimos Beach, north of Perth, supported by $3.3 million funding from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA).
ARENA CEO Mr Ivor Frischknecht said the Alkimos trial was set to prove an innovative energy retailing model suited for the 21st century and the lessons learned would address gaps in existing knowledge, potentially paving the way for similar projects.
“A central 1.1 megawatt-hour (MWh) of lithium ion battery storage has been installed in two shipping containers in the suburb. It will store power from more than 100 rooftop solar photovoltaic (PV) systems,” Mr Frischknecht said.
“Combining community-scale battery storage and rooftop solar presents a win-win for energy retailers, developers and consumers and can provide households with the benefits of storage without on-site installation and maintenance.
“Solar will work alongside battery storage to lower Alkimos Beach’s demand for electricity from the grid. This model has the potential to offer residents cheaper electricity bills and reduce grid connection costs for future new developments.”
The $6.7 million trial will run until 2020.