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Thu, 09/05/2013
The 100% bio diesel trial will soon move to a soy based solution
The 100% bio diesel trial will soon move to a soy based solution
The Diesel Uninterrupted Power Supply units have been tested in the live power system, and are now in operation.
The Diesel Uninterrupted Power Supply units have been tested in the live power system, and are now in operation.
Due to a drop in electricity demand on King Island the wind farm expansion is no longer required
Due to a drop in electricity demand on King Island the wind farm expansion is no longer required

April 2013 project update

The King Island Renewable Energy Integration Project (KIREIP) is progressing well in 2013, with key projects takings great steps forward, particularly the 100% bio diesel trials, battery installation and smart grid roll out. The Diesel Uninterrupted Power Supply units have been tested in the live power system, and are now in operation.

Finally, due to a drop in electricity demand on King Island the wind farm expansion is no longer required, read more below.

Project elements snapshot:

Bio Diesel: A 100% bio diesel trial continues, the testing process is similar to the 20% bio diesel blend trial which was completed earlier in 2012. The 100% trial will assess the potential impacts of using this biofuel as well as relative efficiencies and costs compared to mineral diesel.

The current 100% bio diesel blend is made from recycled cooking oil and tallow, in the next month or so the trial will use a soy based bio diesel. The major advantage which soy based bio diesel presents is that it may not require the diesel fuel storage tanks and pipework to be trace heated. Trace heating is required to ensure that bio diesel does not coagulate and clog up the machine.

Once these 100% trials are completed the results of the two fuel types will be compared along with the 20% bio diesel blend trial. Design work will be completed to facilitate possible conversion of the power station to run on bio diesel.

During the trial the King Island Advanced Hybrid power station is experiencing periods of 100% sustainable energy use – when bio diesel as base load is used in parallel with wind generation.

Vanadium Redox Battery (VRB): investigations have indicated that decommissioning rather than repair of the inoperable VRB will be required. Decommissioning planning is in progress to determine the most cost effective methodology.

Wind farm expansion: due to a reduction in electricity demand on King Island, KIREIP will no longer require an expansion to the Huxley Hill wind farm to achieve its goal of increased average renewable energy use. Read more here >

Uninterruptible Power Supply class Diesel engine (D-UPS): both D-UPS units are installed and tuning and optimisation has been completed – this will ensure security of electricity supply for the King Island community.

A recent test involved tripping the conventional diesel engine that was in service. The two D-UPS flywheels maintained energy supply to the system while the diesel engines kicked into gear. The automated control system then started a conventional diesel and seamlessly maintained the electricity supply to the system. This was a huge achievement for the project as it proved the functionality of the D-UPS units which are fundamental to the success of KIREIP.

The units have been put into ongoing operation in the power system and the team will then move towards system optimisation and zero diesel operation in the coming weeks.

Energy storage system: all of the battery cells for Australia’s largest battery, the 3 MW / 1.6 MWh UltraBattery from supplier Ecoult, have arrived on King Island. The Power Conversion System is currently being factory tested in the USA.

VOS Construction and Joinery has been awarded the contract to build the battery building on King Island and is working with local contractor King Island Constructions. Work began in March 2013 (read more here) and is progressing well with the frame up.

Additionally a containerised battery solution is being developed by Wynyard company Southern Prospect. This will sit adjacent to the battery building and will serve as an example of how this system can be exported internationally.

Smart Grid: CSIRO, Saturn South and Contact Electrical are the suppliers for the smart grid infrastructure and work is very well advanced on this project. The Smart Grid control system has been installed at the King Island Advanced Hybrid Power Station, and the wireless communication network has been rolled out and commissioned. Currently the wireless network is connected to Currie where trial loads have been connected and the first customer roll outs are in progress.

A number of locations are now connected to the smart grid, a number of houses as well as the power station building, lines crew depot and electric vehicle charging dock at the station. Work is underway to have the school connected to the smart grid.

Community groups have been signed up to engage their members to participate. Get involved here >

You can still get involved with the smart grid if you have solar hot water or other electricity loads which are on a dedicated sub-circuit.

Control System: The Hydro Tasmania team has designed, tested and implemented a major upgrade of the power station control system, with new user interfaces and alarm paging systems. The new system controls the automatic start-up of diesel generators and other generating plant and is an important step towards being able to implement zero diesel operation and integrating the wide range of innovative technology that is being implemented by KIREIP.