Local staff have been testing the Centralised Energy Storage System (CESS) in different situations at the Cairns Innovation Laboratory for several months now.The Innovation Lab at our Hartley Street depot was opened in June 2017.

CESS consists of 198 lithium titanate batteries, offering a maximum capacity of 200 kilowatt hours, and a 100kVA inverter.

The system will also be integrated with an existing 60 kilowatt solar PV array and diesel generation, creating a hybrid energy system.

The team including Manager Technology Development Michelle Taylor and Senior Engineer Distributed Energy Alan Louis,are exploring whether large scale batteries like this one could be used to support network substations or power stations over traditional augmentation.

This includes areas such as power quality improvement, demand management, micro-gridding and market response.

The key will be the development of smart control systems to effectively integrate different sources of energy together, alongside the network.

The lab is designed to test how different technologies can benefit and integrate with Ergon’s network. It's testing seven different makes of residential battery energy storage systems on the market, including the popular Sonnenbatterie and Tesla Powerwall 2 devices.

The innovation lab is at the cutting edge of solar PV and battery storage research and has various solar arrays and solar PV inverters also integrated in to allow real system testing.

The lab has also been testing a 83 kilowatt/200 kilowatt hour custom-made battery CESS system to look at new ways of boosting quality of supply and reliability in fringe of grid parts of our network, such as Alpha in central Queensland, where the network is supported by diesel generation.

The Technology Development team has become recognised experts in battery technologies and solutions.

The award-winning Grid Utility Support System (GUSS) and further labbattery energy storage system testinghas further deepened the team's skills.

Extensive battery monitoring, evaluation and testing will further enable the business to take advantage of the many opportunities energy storage offers for the future.

By understanding battery storage systems and their integration with our network means we can better advise our customers about this new and growing technology. If you are considering battery storage for your home, this story might help.