Australian Gas Peaker Plant To Get 4-MW Battery

In an Australian first, Origin Energy announced it will install a 4-MW/4-MWh grid scale battery at its Mt Stuart Power Station in Townsville.

Mt Stuart Power Station is a 414-MW open cycle gas power station, designed to supply electricity at times of peak demand and is the largest such facility in North Queensland. In the U.S., these plants are called “peakers.”

Origin’s Executive General Manager of Energy Supply and Operations Greg Jarvis said the battery would deliver a range of benefits to the region.

“This will be the first time in Australia that a grid-scale battery has been connected to an open cycle gas turbine system and will not only create efficiencies, but enable a reliable start up in the event of a large-scale power outage.

“Having a battery of this size means we’re able to store the energy needed to start the power station without the aid of the electricity from the transmission network should a loss of power occur due to an event like a cyclone.

“The battery will also help drive down emissions and support renewable projects like the recently commissioned Clare Solar Farm, by storing solar generation during the day and dispatching at times of peak demand after the sun has set.

“Our transition to renewables and shift to decentralized generation requires an ongoing focus on ensuring our customers have reliable and affordable energy and we’ll be looking closely at the battery’s performance to see how larger versions might be deployed elsewhere across our generation portfolio,” Jarvis said.

Origin has entered into an agreement with a Korean consortium led by Bosungpowertec for the supply and installation of the 4-MW / 4-MWh battery, to be placed within the existing footprint of the power station.

Installation and commissioning are expected to be complete in May 2019.

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Note: Pairing energy storage with gas peaker plants will be a topic of discussion during a session at POWER-GEN International,  titled “Integrating Energy Storage with Conventional Power Generation.” The event is set to take place in Orlando, Florida from December 4-6, 2018. Learn more here.

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