The 95MW Tailem Bend Solar Project in Southern Australia has been granted approval for self-forecast generation by the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO).
The approval was granted after an eight-week assessment period by AEMO, making Tailem Bend the first semi-dispatched renewable energy project in the National Electricity Market in Australia to switch from AEMO’s forecasting tool to the self-forecasting model.
“Self-forecasting has the potential to garner significant benefits to the wider management and operation of the market and renewable industry,” said Anil Nangia, Managing Director of Vena Energy Australia, which owns and developed the project.
“This includes greater industry capability and responsibility to the communities being serviced by renewable generation, improved system security and stability, reduced Frequency Control Ancillary Services (FCAS) costs of the generators, and more efficient market outcomes.”
The Tailem Bend Solar Project achieved its commercial operate date in April this year. Vena engaged a forecasting provider Proa Analytics to install the necessary hardware and software, including on-site equipment such as sky cameras and pyranometers, that would pave the way for self-forecast generation. The installation was completed by mid-June, and Proa Analytics was able to start submitting generation forecasts on behalf of Vena Energy for the Tailem Bend Solar Project in July.
Proa Analytics Managing Director Matthew Jeppesen stated that “We believe that self-forecasting for renewable generation is a significant step forward for the Australian energy industry and are delighted that Tailem Bend Solar Project is the first to achieve this milestone.”
The Tailem Bend Solar Project is one of the largest in Southern Australia, capable of generating 200GWh of renewable energy per year, which is able to meet the annual electricity demands of up to 40,000 homes.
Vena Energy is progressing over 2400MW of renewable energy projects across the country including Tailem Bend Solar Project Stage 2, and a Tailem Bend Battery Energy Storage Project.