The rubber hits the road for Australia’s largest electric bus fleet project

A new pilot project set to drive down emissions in public transport and heavy transport has today been announced. The $36 million project will consist of Australia’s largest electric bus fleet (40 buses), charging infrastructure and a retrofitted bus depot in Leichhardt, Sydney.

The ANU Battery Storage and Grid Integration Program is playing a supporting role in this multi-partnered project, collaborating with energy consultancy, Zenobe, and electricity transmission network operator, Transgrid. BSGIP will leverage the data produced in this next generation electric bus depot trial in a project entitled RouteZero.

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Local network pricing and community storage a powerful combo: ANU

If networks could charge for localised use of their service, all customers in areas with high PV and community-scale batteries would pay lower bills … with no cost to the network, research shows.

Is rooftop solar a problem in the suburbs? Apparently so, with rising PV exports prompting falls in feed-in tariffs, plans for export charges in Adelaide and deployment of community-scale batteries in many cities.

As the grid transitions away from coal, it seems as though rooftop solar is part of the solution and part of the problem at the same time. Is there a simple solution that could see all that excess solar energy shared equitably and leave customers better off?

Yes, there is. Or there could be, if networks were allowed more flexibility in how they charge for their services.

Full story in ecogeneration

PhD opening – Clean energy solutions on the Great Barrier Reef

We are looking for a PhD scholar to work as part of a multi-party project on cooling – and thereby saving – the Great Barrier Reef.

The PhD project will contribute to the development of clean energy systems that power the equipment that increases the thickness of marine clouds above the reef. These systems may feature solar photovoltaics, wind power, bio fuels, wave power, batteries and other technologies. The project will assess the technical, economic, and social feasibility of these technologies and design systems to meet the needs of the reef cooling applications.

The student will work closely with the Battery Storage and Grid Integration Program at ANU (www.bsgip.com), as well as researchers at Southern Cross University and the broader Reef Restoration and Adaptation Program (see https://gbrrestoration.org/program/cooling-and-shading/).

Full application details are here: https://cecs.anu.edu.au/research/student-research-projects/clean-energy-solutions-great-barrier-reef-phd-project-0

Feature on ABC TV Catalyst program – a childhood dream

ABC TV’s Catalyst program was one of my favorite TV shows growing up, so it was a bit of a dream to get to be a part of the recent episode about the transformation of the electricity system.

The episode did a fantastic job, covering a huge range of the interesting developments underway across the system and the country, explaining the crucial facts and trends, and presenting everything in interesting, engaging and understandable ways.

So, I’d highly recommend giving watching here https://www.abc.net.au/catalyst/the-grid-powering-the-future/13491654

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Energy stored in electric car batteries could power your home or stabilise the grid — and save you money

A very well researched piece by James Purtill for Catalyst in ABC Online https://www.abc.net.au/news/science/2021-08-10/v2g-vehicle-to-grid-pays-ev-owners-for-electricity/100353072

Until recently, Gary Hogben did not expect he would ever be paid to simply plug his car into the wall every night.

And yet, over the past year, that’s exactly what’s happened. He and his wife have earned more than $1,000 while their car sits in the driveway.

The service is called V2G, or “vehicle to grid”, and it could be an important component of Australia’s electricity grid in coming years, plus a way for car owners to make a little extra income.

The concept is fairly straightforward: electric vehicles (EVs) are essentially very large batteries on wheels. Most of the time they sit idle.

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Solar Analytics acquires SunTenants

Solar Analytics – which specialises in data and monitoring devices – has expanded its business into offering solar for renters, launching Solar for Rentals, following its acquisition of Sydney-based start-up SunTenants earlier in the year.

The Solar for Rentals offering includes a calculator that can be used by both tenants and landlords to estimate the value of a rooftop solar installation and determine what a “fair” increase to a property’s rent may be.

When paired with Solar Analytics system performance monitoring dashboard, Solar for Renters is able to provide a transparent platform for both landlords and tenants that should help breakdown the confusion that can come with installing a solar system on a rental property.

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One Step Off The Grid – SuRF project announcement

A new project led by the Australian National University will assess the feasibility of transitioning regional New South Wales communities from grids exposed to bushfires and other natural disasters to a resilient network of islandable renewables and battery-based microgrids.

The Southcoast Microgrid Reliability Feasibility (SµRF) project was last week named as one of 20 projects around Australia to be awarded a share of $25.6 million in funding via round two of the federal government’s Regional and Remote Communities Reliability Fund.

The project is being led the Battery Storage and Grid Integration Program at ANU in partnership with the Southcoast Health and Sustainability Alliance (SHASA), network company Essential Energy, and technology company Zepben.

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