CitiPower and Powercor have unveiled a new platform that creates a marketplace for alternative means of upgrading the energy network, beyond adding poles and wires. 

When parts of power networks reach their capacity, they usually get a ‘traditional’ network upgrade to supply the extra power that customers need.

These works might be a transformer upgrade or an uprated powerline, and these typical ‘poles and wires’ works help energy providers to ensure reliable supply to customers.

CitiPower and Powercor are looking to determine if there is a way to deliver similar results using different technology at a lower cost, potentially creating value for customers. 

The online flexibility marketplace was created with global technology provider, Piclo, building from their experience internationally to offer an interactive map of local network constraints, allowing providers to match their solutions to network opportunities close to them.

CitiPower and Powercor will use the flexibility marketplace to offer funding for non-network solution providers network-wide, with several tenders and expressions of interest expected throughout the year asking suppliers to solve constraints at a range of levels and capacities; from as low as a few dozen kilowatts, to tens of megawatts.

The first flexibility tender will offer hundreds of opportunities for providers across the network to defer the need for upgrades, and expressions of interest are also encouraged for millions of dollars of opportunities into the future.

Powercor’s Head of Network Planning, Andrew Dinning, said that he hoped providers would bid into the tenders to deliver competitive options and keep costs low for customers.

“We’re really keen to see how much the market has matured to help us deliver for our customers at a lower cost than our traditional ‘poles and wires’ alternative,” Mr Dinning said.

“This might include batteries, virtual power plants or demand management programs, we’d love to hear what’s out there today.”

Mr Dinning said that Powercor’s constraint data was open and transparent and, through the Piclo Flex marketplace, is easier to access than ever.

“Our new platform further enhances our transparency with network upgrades. Anyone can use the marketplace, look at sites we plan to upgrade, and see if they can compete with traditional network solutions to solve network constraints.”

Solutions successful in the current tender would be rewarded with multi-year contracts to provide network support that helps to meet the challenges of increasing maximum demand.

The first of the competitions have been made available on the CitiPower and Powercor Flexibility Marketplace.

Bidding for tenders is expected to run until late 2024.

Image: Ric Jacyno/

Related articles

©2024 Energy Magazine. All rights reserved


We're not around right now. But you can send us an email and we'll get back to you, asap.


Log in with your credentials

Forgot your details?