The South Australian Government’s plan to create the world’s biggest virtual power plant (VPP) using solar PV and Tesla batteries has reached a milestone with 1,100 homes connected.
The government plans to connect 50,000 homes together which would act as a single generating unit, cutting energy rices, increasing grid stability and contributing to its goal of 100 per cent renewable electricity generation by 2030.
The first trial phase has installed systems on 1,100 SA public housing houses comprising a 5kw solar system, a Tesla Powerwall battery and a smart meter.
The households enjoy power at a price 20 per cent cheaper than the default market offer price applying in the state.
The SA government has provided a $2 million grant to support the trial phase and the South Australian Renewable Technology Fund has provided a $30 million loan.
While the VPP is expected to cost $800 million, future funding will come from private investors attracted by the success of the trials.
Once complete the VPP could generate 250MW and store 650MWh, which is five times the storage capacity of the Tesla big battery installed at Hornsdale in the state’s mid-north.
The government has a separate Home Battery Scheme to power 40,000 homes which is funded by $100 million in state subsidies.
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