Ecojoule has developed batteries mounted on power poles for community and network clients. Reported in July 2023 in Energy Matters for Ausgrid a local Brisbane company developed a 40kW/80kWh battery / inverter. The integrated package can be rapidly mounted on the DSP (distribution service provider) on its own network power pole. Communication using 4G/5G enables services including virtual power plant, STATCOM services, frequency control services.
The solution is simple.
- A 40kW inverter that can provide single or 3-phase electricity
- 80kW battery
- Mount on power poles.
- Smart software and connectivity providing integrated STATCOM using the battery.
A STATic synchronous COMpensator (STATCOM) is a fast-acting device capable of providing or absorbing reactive current and thereby regulating the voltage at the point of connection to a power grid. It is categorised under Flexible AC transmission system (FACTS) devices. STATCOM services are provided by most energy solutions such as ABB, Siemens, GE etc. The elegant solution by EcoJoule is not just the battery for storage but an inverter control system that can operate on the system at the end of the distribution network.
Rapid deployment into the community where there is lots of solar, and poor rollout of batteries or Electric vehicles or vehicles to grid. No need to upgrade infrastructure, go through the community battery route, and have more reliable voltage and frequency. Power poles are everywhere and already belong to the DSP. Minimal need for community consultation. No network upgrades needed. Smart systems to integrate into the network provider network management system.
EcoJoule and Ausgrid are targeting about 20 homes per power pole. With the rapid decrease in LFP batteries, the economics are rapidly improving.
Siting of Pole Mounted Inverter/Battery
Moving from Trials to Deployment
“Pole-top batteries will play a crucial role in integrating more renewable energy into the grid. They can store excess energy generated during periods of high production and release it during times of low production or high demand. “The system will provide localised energy storage and grid support, helping to support more efficient and reliable electrical infrastructure while facilitating the transition to net zero.”Ausgrid’s EGM of Asset Management, Junayd Hollis June 2023
Batteries Mounted on Power Poles Smart Idea
- In areas of high solar penetration but limited battery storage.
- Compact design
- Easy installation
- Smart integration
- Previous use of the product was telecommunication towers, sewage and water services providing UPS services
- Enables STATCOM –
Other Companies And Trials
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Between 2021 and 2023, 40 batteries were installed across Melbourne’s east, south-east and the Mornington Peninsula as part of an $11 million program – funded with $7 million from United Energy and $4 million from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA). One of the suppliers was Power Tech and another supplier was Thycon. The pole services about 75 homes.
The 30kVA/85hWh BESS operates mid-circuit of a 50-75 consumer LV feeder and provides voltage control, phase-balancing, load/generation peak lopping and smart time-of use solar energy shifting. Its most frequent use case, in the absence of any technical constraints on the network, is participation in Electricity Market Services, controlled by an energy company.
Ausgrid rolled out Ecojoule power pole mounted systems in 2023