Victorian Big Battery: Australia’s biggest battery storage system at 450MWh, is online

Excerpt from energy-storage.news

The Victorian Big Battery, a 300MW / 450MWh lithium-ion battery energy storage system (BESS) in Australia, has been officially opened by the Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change for the state of Victoria.

Minister Lily D’Ambrosio said her government was “proud to flick the switch on Australia’s biggest battery which will help protect our network in summer, support our renewable revolution and slash energy prices”.

The system will charge during the day when abundant renewable energy means electricity is cheap and will open up an additional 250MW of interconnection capacity to allow Victoria to import power from New South Wales at peak times — mainly during summers as alluded to by minister D’Ambrosio.

A 250MW contract is in place with the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) under the Victorian government’s System Integrity Protection Scheme (SIPS) to provide that automatic instant response that batteries are capable of. It will also participate in the National Electricity Market where it can provide grid services such as frequency response.

The government pointed out that batteries can perform a range of applications more quickly, more cleanly and ultimately cheaper in the long run than existing assets like gas-fired generation. Independent analysis has been quoted that predicts AU$2.40 (US$1.71) in benefits will be accrued to Victorian residents and businesses for every AU$1 invested in the battery system.