Australian renewables company Edify Energy has successfully completed project financing to build and operate the largest approved grid-forming battery in the country.
The 150MW/300MWh battery energy storage system, located in renewable energy rich south-west NSW, is made up of three separate partitions:
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- 60MW/120MWh Riverina Energy Storage System 1 (RESS 1);
- 65MW/130MW Riverina Energy Storage System 2 (RESS 2); and
- 25MW/50MWh Darlington Point Energy Storage System (DPESS).
The ground-breaking battery finance deal:
- Lands a first-time battery asset transaction in the Australian market with Federation Asset Management as majority owner;
- Brings together the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA), Westpac and DNB in the provision of a long-term syndicated debt facility;
- Is supported by offtake agreements with Shell Energy and EnergyAustralia;
- Launches the largest utility scale grid forming plants in the National Electricity Market, providing one of the most advanced energy storage systems in the NEM;
- Supports the development of regional NSW through the creation of jobs, economic injection in the community, and upskilling in the local area;
- Helps secure the future stability of renewable energy in south west NSW; and
- Powers 40,000 homes for 2 hours.
Designed and developed by Edify, these energy storage systems using Tesla Megapacks will be the most advanced battery systems in the National Electricity Market, equipped with grid forming inverters that operate in ‘virtual synchronous generator’ mode. This will allow the storage system to operate in a manner akin to a conventional generator and provide crucial system strength services to help facilitate the connection of future clean energy power plants in the region.
Edify CEO John Cole said he was proud of the company’s role as a leader in Australia’s frontline of innovation in the sustainable energy sector.
“We have long been believers of harnessing the full capability of power electronics and preparing for a 100 per cent renewables-based grid. It is exciting for Edify to be delivering another ‘first in market’ facility.
“In this instance, we’re using the combination of the dispatchable properties of batteries with a new vintage of grid forming inverter control systems to create a generator that can provide power system support services, which have traditionally been provided by thermal synchronous generators.
“It is testament to the capabilities of the Edify team that we have obtained approval from AEMO and TransGrid to operate the batteries in ‘virtual synchronous generator’ mode from the commencement of commercial operations.
“This facility is providing load and additional strength to the grid in an area where both add a lot of value. Edify will continue to advance to a 100 per cent renewable future with the confidence of a stable, reliable power system.”
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Edify negotiated an industry first agreement with Federation Asset Management Pty Ltd to acquire a majority shareholding of the project as the seed asset for its Sustainable Australian Real Asset fund (SARA), a pure play Australian energy transition fund managed by Federation. Edify continues to maintain a long-term ownership interest in the project and will undertake the construction management and long-term asset management roles for the batteries, aligning interests with its majority equity partners.