Federal agencies are funding a new digital energy connections simulation tool. 

On behalf of the Australian Government, the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has announced $2.23 million in funding to the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) to develop a cloud-based connections simulation tool that will enable a more efficient evaluation of new grid connections to Australia’s electricity networks.

The simulation tool is intended to assist project developers to more efficiently prepare their applications for projects, such as new solar or wind farms, and reduce the time to connect them to the National Electricity Market (NEM).

It should also allow project developers and their partners and electricity networks to rapidly test and refine their renewable energy plant and project configurations using the same detailed wide-area power system simulations as used within AEMO, while preserving the confidentiality of the model data.

The $12.95 million project will be the first step of a staged approach for the delivery of AEMO’s Australian Energy Simulation Centre, which seeks ways to efficiently manage a large number of grid connection applications from renewable energy developers.

Testing will soon commence with industry participants on a working prototype, followed by a staged rollout of the connection simulation tool. The first major release is planned for the end of 2021. 

More information is accessible here.