Completion of the project follows the commitment in March, on behalf of the Australian Government, by ARENA of $25 million to two grid-connected, utility-scale batteries, matching the $25 million committed by the Victorian Government.
The 30 MW / 30 MWh Ballarat Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) is currently in the final testing phase before being connected to the grid in time for the approaching summer.
A consortium led by Downer Spotless completed the battery, supplied by technology provider Fluence, in October.
The battery is capable of powering more than 20,000 homes for an hour of critical peak demand before being recharged.
Under the joint initiative, ARENA has also funded a second large-scale battery in Gannawarra near Kerang, and co-located at the 60 MW Gannawarra Solar Farm.
The 25 MW / 50 MWh Gannawarra battery, system, constructed and owned by Edify and Wirsol and supplied by Tesla, is expected to be ready for summer. This battery will also be operated by EnergyAustralia under a long-term offtake agreement.
ARENA chief executive Darren Miller said the Ballarat battery would benefit Victoria during times of peak usage and help to improve grid stability in Western Victoria.
“As we have seen with the success of large-scale batteries in South Australia, grid scale batteries have an important role to play in providing short term energy storage and providing rapid response injections of power to help stabilise the grid," he said.
“BESS is the first grid scale battery to be commissioned in Victoria. We congratulate the consortium behind this project, and look forward to seeing the second battery commissioned very soon.
“This battery will help to ease constraints on transmission lines in Western Victoria that currently curtail the output of wind and solar, while also helping to bring in more renewables to the grid."