ARENA funds GridWise to streamline renewable energy integration

Image credit: ARENA's Twitter

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) is injecting $336,000 into GridWise Energy Solutions for their pioneering ‘Dynamic Model Validation’ (DMV) project.

This $800,000 initiative aims to create an online platform, the DMV Tool, to allow renewable energy project developers to self-validate their generator models before submitting them to Network Service Providers (NSPs) and the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO).

GridWise is collaborating with Coleman Laboratories, AusNet, and Transgrid to develop this software, which aims to simplify the application process for connecting new renewable energy sources like solar and wind to the grid.

The standardised self-validation process is expected to expedite the due diligence performed by NSPs and AEMO, reducing the workload associated with model validation and freeing up engineers for more complex tasks.

Currently, NSPs and AEMO conduct extensive checks on generator models to ensure they meet the necessary standards for power system modelling.

These checks are resource-intensive and often duplicated, causing delays. The DMV Tool, updated regularly to align with agreed assessment approaches, aims to eliminate these inefficiencies.

ARENA CEO Darren Miller highlighted the importance of this initiative in accelerating Australia’s renewable energy transition.

“We are in a critical decade for Australia’s energy transition, and we know the National Electricity Market needs to add significantly more renewable generation as soon as possible,” Miller stated.

He continued, “GridWise’s DMV Tool can help to streamline the grid connection process by reducing rework and avoiding duplication of processes. We need to make it easier for network service providers to add solar and wind to the grid, while also not compromising performance standards.”

The DMV Tool, currently in the trial phase, is slated for completion in March 2025. Transgrid’s Executive General Manager of Network, Marie Jordan, expressed enthusiasm for the project.

“NSW is currently executing one of the world’s most ambitious and rapid clean energy transitions and Transgrid is committed to doing everything possible to bring cleaner and cheaper energy to consumers sooner, while helping to achieve Australia’s emissions reduction targets,” Jordan said.

She emphasised that the DMV Tool will improve the quality of submissions in the connection process, enhancing system security, reliability, and operability.