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ABB delivers microgrid solution for off grid mining operations in Australia

EBR Staff Writer Published 17 April 2018

ABB has delivered and deployed a microgrid solution with battery storage to help secure power supply for off grid mining operations in Australia.

The firm has supplied a containerized microgrid solution intended to support a gas-fired power station to optimize and automate its operations, increase energy efficiency, reduce fossil fuel consumption.

The order has been placed by Kokam, a major storage solution provider.

The microgrid solution enables uninterrupted power supply from Alinta Energy’s Newman Power Station located around 1,200 km kilometers (km) north of Perth in Western Australia. The power plant delivers power to remotely located mining operations in the Pilbara.

ABB’s microgrid solution includes a 30MW battery energy storage system, with capacity to supply power to 6,000 homes.

ABB Power Grids division, Grid Automation business unit head Massimo Danieli said: “Our plug-and-play microgrid solution, has been designed to meet complex automation requirements and will ensure grid stability and fuel saving for Alinta’s operation.

“Microgrids and energy storage are key focus areas in our Next Level strategy, supporting our quest to provide grid stability, fuel savings, and bring reliable power to people, while reducing environmental impact, as exemplified by this project.”

The firm said that the microgrid will integrate five 6MW ABB Ability PowerStore Battery energy storage systems with the power station’s existing gas turbines, in order to provide a ‘spinning reserve’.

ABB said: “ABB’s microgrid solution will provide power supply to cover the time it takes to start-up a new gas turbine, when there is a fault in the running turbine causing power to trip. This back-up will enable uninterrupted supply of reliable power and prevent any disruption.”

The new solution features ABB’s Microgrid Plus automation and control technology, which is designed to monitor the gas turbines and facilitate utility-grade power quality and grid stability.

ABB said that the solution is also equipped for remote service and maintenance.

Image: ABB’s Microgrid solution. Photo: courtesy of ABB.