FRV Australia delivers first hybrid solar-storage power plant

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Fotowatio Renewable Ventures (FRV) Australia has announced that the Dalby Hybrid Power Plant – which comprises 2.4 MW of PV capacity, and a 2.5 MW / 5 MWh battery energy storage system – has commenced operations.

FRV said the facility is its first hybrid solar and battery project in Australia and is also one of the first developments in the country to combine PV generation with a battery system sharing the same point of connection to the national grid, rather than operating and dispatching as separate units.

“This is significant, because the combination of solar PV and battery storage helps improve energy efficiency and grid resilience,” the company said. “Dalby will also impact positively on the power distribution network by providing more stable renewable energy generation.”

FRV said the power plant will feed into regional Queensland network operator Ergon Energy’s distribution network, as well as take electricity from the grid to charge the battery, allowing it function as “a predictable and dispatchable generation plant.”

The company has previously indicated the system will have the ability to access the maximum number of markets and revenue streams, including arbitrage and FCAS services.

“This project will be critical to Queensland’s future energy supply and security as renewable energy capacity increases, with storage supporting solar and wind-generated power to be supplied to the market when it is most needed,” it said. “The inclusion of PV as part of the project shows the importance of integrating solar and batteries in order to deliver dispatchable power. “

FRV Australia Chief Executive Officer Carlo Frigerio said the Dalby system is a “small but strategic” project for the company which has been active in the Australian market for more than a decade.

“It is in line with the pioneering spirit of FRV Australia, being always at the forefront of the energy transition and technology to create a better future for all of us,” he said.

Owned by Saudi Arabia’s Abdul Latif Jameel Energy Canada-based Omers Infrastructure, FRV has been investing in Australia since 2012. To date, the company has developed more than 1 GW of PV assets built or under construction across 10 projects.

The portfolio includes the 100 MW Lilyvale solar farm in Queensland, the 100 MW Winton solar farm in Victoria, and the 90 MW Sebastapol, 115 MW Metz, 300 MW Walla Walla, 56 MW Moree, and 70 MW Goonumbla solar farms, all in New South Wales.

The company is also progressing the development of several other hybrid and battery energy storage projects across the National Electricity Market (NEM), including the 250 MW / 500 MWh Gnarwarre and 100 MW / 200 MWh Terang batteries in Victoria.

Both Terang and Gnarwarre are at ready to build stage with construction expected to commence in the second half of 2024.

Omers Asia-Pacific Senior Managing Director said Christopher Curtain said both those projects would benefit from the lessons learned during the delivery of the Dalby project.

“Dalby’s connection into the grid is another great milestone for FRV Australia,” he said. “As our first Australian hybrid project, we look forward to leveraging the learnings to continue to grow our Australian portfolio and continue to support the transition of the Australian energy system.”

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