Australian news, and some related international items

Australia’s electricity networks can cope with plenty more Solar PV power

Networks Should Have Nothing To Fear From Solar PV, Energy Matters, by Giles Parkinson, editor of, 14 June 12A new study led by the CSIRO has questioned the validity of fears that widespread deployment of solar PV could not be supported by the electricity grid, and says Australia could support a lot more solar PV with minimum fuss.
The integration of intermittent renewable energy sources such as wind and solar has been a major issue in discussions about the deployment of clean energy, but the CSIRO study says fears about solar have been overblown, in much the same way as they were about wind energy.

Glenn Platt, the head of CSIRO’s local energy systems division, who oversaw the team that wrote the detailed report, says it was commonly thought that the maximum amount of solar PV that could be supported by the grid without significant upgrades was 20 per cent.

“That’s a very common statement, but I’m not sure we have found much evidence to support that. The analysis shows we can have a heck of a lot more than 20 per cent,” Platt told RenewEconomy .

Indeed, modeling done by the study over four scenarios showed that there was negligible impact on either strong urban or weak remote grids at 10 per cent penetration, and even at 40 per cent penetration there was hardly any impact on strong urban grids – variations in voltage at that level were minimal and would most likely go un-noticed by consumers……..
The important issue for Australia, the CSIRO said, was the need for a highly flexible electricity grid, and one that is designed or adapted for renewable energy sources – a conclusion that will no doubt reinforce fears that much of the current build out of $45 billion of additional grid infrastructure is ill-suited to meeting the challenges ahead, as well as imposing a massive cost on consumers.

June 14, 2012 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, solar |

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