Edify Energy solar farms to use AI trading platform for energy market participation


In what is touted as the first use of AI-based trading for utility-scale solar anywhere in the world, Edify Energy has completed a rollout of California-based AMS’ technology across five operational solar farms. Covering a portfolio totaling 438 MW of installed capacity, the software will help Edify Energy navigate through price volatility which poses a threat to solar business models.

The AMS platform uses a range of inputs and a proprietary machine learning algorithm to predict prices, optimize around local constraints and recommend bids that maximize financial returns. Such a technology can prove be extremely valuable in Australia, where wind and solar farms are being increasingly hit by wild swing in wholesale power prices and negative pricing events.

The technology has been rolled out at five solar farms in Queensland and Victoria, which Edify Energy manages and partly owns. The solar farms using AMS’ trading platform are Daydream (180 MW), Hayman (60 MW), Whitsunday (69 MW), Hamilton (69 MW) and Gannawarra (60 MW).

As Edify noted in its release, the effects of rising price volatility have been especially acute in Queensland, where between August and October this year, energy prices were negative for a total of 98.5 hours – 25 times higher than during the same three months in 2018. Prices were negative during approximately 8% of daylight hours. “AMS’ trading platform skillfully addresses and alleviates this market volatility by self-executing a “precision trading” strategy,” the company said.

Commenting on the rollout, John Cole, Edify Energy Chief Executive said: “AMS’ software services enhance our capability in renewables trading and complements the other technical, physical and commercial aspects of power station operations and management.”

For AMS, deploying its AI on solar in Queensland and Victoria represents “a significant expansion” of its capabilities. “We’re proud of the results we’re getting already,” said Seyed Madaeni, CEO of AMS. “We believe that this is the first time AI trading of solar has been deployed anywhere in the world and demonstrates AMS’s ability to manage assets under a range of market conditions. With AMS AI, solar’s future is even brighter.”

Over the last year, the tech firm has built a contracted pipeline of more than 2,000 MW of solar, wind, pumped hydro and battery storage assets in the US and Australia. Earlier this year, AMS deployed its trading platform at wind farms in South Australia and Victoria.

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