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Solar solution delivered to Pilbara business customers

One of the first of its kind for regional Western Australia, Horizon Power has recently connected a South Hedland business to their 37 kW, 108 roof-mounted solar panels, complete with a battery storage system, also known as generation management.

South Hedland Liquor Supplies, located on Hunt Street in South Hedland, underwent and passed solar installation and storage system commissioning tests on Thursday 10 July to ensure the generation management component met Horizon Power’s technical requirements.

Horizon Power’s Senior Systems Technology Engineer Dave Edwards said many customers want to connect renewable energy to Horizon Power’s electricity systems; however one of the challenges is the impact of their intermittent nature on the security and reliability of power supply for other Horizon Power customers. 

“Horizon Power developed technical requirements for renewable energy installations, including those which are generation managed, where the electricity output can be controlled to help maintain the reliability of power supply to all our customers,” said Mr Edwards.

“The recent availability and increased affordability of generation-managed renewable energy installations means that customers now have more choice about the size of the system they can install and could allow more renewable energy to be installed across Horizon Power’s network,“ he said.

South Hedland Liquor Supplies co-owner Brent Rudler said the investment into their business was fundamental in giving them the ability to control electricity consumption and monthly bills.

“We are operating a business out of the Pilbara where there is no shortage of sunshine, so if we didn’t capitalise on that fact to improve our business operating costs, then we’d be mad,” Mr Rudler said.

“The significant investment we have made will be paid off within three years and it was something we decided to justify to take control of the rising cost of electricity.

“We would like to thank Horizon Power for their support in helping us get this project off the ground, it is really exciting and certainly something I would encourage other Pilbara business owners to consider.

“We can’t control the cost of electricity, but we can control how we use it and what smart technologies we employ to help us mitigate costs,” he said. 

Gary McDonald from Solar My World produced the generation management system for the store, and had it engineered in Western Australia by Balance Group.

“Solar My World has now formalised its relationship with Balance Utility Solutions to form the joint venture company SolarBalance to provide a new energy storage solution for households, businesses and government agencies,” said Mr McDonald.

“This system installed at South Hedland Liquor Supplies is the first system we have installed. Solar myWorld has products to suit small and large end users, all with the aim to use clean, low cost renewable energy and solar smoothing solutions which meet Horizon Power’s requirements.”

For more information on renewable energy and generation management systems, please visit www.horizonpower.com.au

For media enquiries, please contact Rachel Clarke on 0427 081 092

Fast Facts 

What is generation management and why is it necessary?

Typically, when cloud covers the sun (or when the wind stops blowing), the local power station has to quickly produce more electricity to compensate for the loss of electricity no longer being generated by the renewable energy installations. This places a very sharp increase in demand on the power station and in certain cases, could lead to unplanned power interruptions.

Generation management helps manage any sudden change in the amount of electricity being generated by renewable energy installations. It reduces the effect of what might otherwise be an unmanageable increase in demand on the power station.

Typical generation management devices control and/or store the electricity generated from renewable energy installations, either directly or remotely.