Victoria's first big battery - the Ballarat Energy Storage System - has begun its commissioning phase, charging and discharging into the grid, just a week after its formal unveiling.
The 30MW/30MWh Ballarat big battery is one of two — along with the 25MW/50MWh Ganawarra battery next to the solar farm of the same name - that are being mostly funded by the Victoria government and the Australian Renewable Energy Agency.
Ballarat features battery systems from US-based Fluence, and is unique in that it is connected to a key junction in the network, and not located next to a wind and solar farm like the Tesla big battery in South Australia and other batteries under development at Bungala, Wattle Point, Snowtown, Lincoln Gap and Kennedy.
The charging and discharging activity of the Ballarat battery that began this week were picked up by Paul McArdle of Global Roam, the providers of our popular NEM-Watch widget, who provided the graph below.
The blue lines shows the charging (load) and orange is the discharging (generation). You would normally expect the battery to charge at times of low prices, and discharge at higher prices.
The Ballarat battery is contracted to EnergyAustralia, who will use it for mostly grid-related services such as frequency control and relieving congestion on the network.
Fluence on Friday landed its second major contract in Australia, winning the tender to build a 10MW battery next to the 212MW Lincoln Gap wind farm near Port Augusta in South Australia.
Most other batteries - Hornsdale, Bungala, Lake Bonney, and Kennedy - will be provided by Tesla. Other proposed developments have yet to make their choice. The Wattle Farm at Dalrymple North is made but Samsung.