October 23, 2018

Victorian Energy Minister, Lily D’Ambrosio, today officially inaugurated Victoria’s first utility-scale Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) at the AusNet Services Ballarat Terminal Station in Warrenheip, Ballarat. The 30- megawatt (MW) 30 megawatt-hour (MWh) BESS — currently being commissioned by the world-class consortium comprising Downer Spotless, AusNet Services, EnergyAustralia and Fluence, and funded by the Victorian Government and Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) on behalf of the Australian Government — has entered the final phases of testing in preparation for it to begin relieving pressure on the regional grid, ahead of the approaching summer. 

Downer Spotless completed construction of the Ballarat BESS, supplied by Fluence, a Siemens affiliate, in October. The project is owned by AusNet Services and will be operated by EnergyAustralia to provide Victorians with more flexible, reliable and efficient energy, and support the supply of variable forms of renewable energy such as solar and wind power. 

The goal of the Ballarat project is to add flexibility to the regional grid. The system is capable of powering more than 20,000 homes for an hour of critical peak demand before being recharged, and is able to respond to changing grid needs within milliseconds. It will operate 24/7 to support critical peak demand, improving grid stability of the state’s energy supply. 

“The successful energisation of this battery marks a real watershed moment in the continuing modernisation of Victoria’s energy supply. Integrating this leading technology into our Ballarat Terminal Station means it is well placed to enhance the stability of the state’s energy supply, especially during the coming summer peak demand periods,” said Nino Ficca, Managing Director of AusNet Services. 

EnergyAustralia Managing Director, Catherine Tanna, said the project was a great example of the technologies that are underpinning development of a new, modern energy system in Australia.