Tesla Victorian big battery fire

The Tesla Victorian big battery fire at Moorabool near Geelong in Victoria is another example of why smaller community-based neighbourhood batteries are a preferable way forward for making the energy supply more renewable. With smaller installations that are more spread out and serve the community in which they are based there is less likelihood of larger electricity supply interruptions when a large power supplier has issues and has to be taken off line for safety reasons.

The 300MW/450MWH capacity big battery comprised of Tesla batteries in multiple shipping containers was registered with AEMO on 28th July 2021. During testing on 30th July 2021 one cell failed and caught fire and quickly engulfed the container in which the batteries were housed. This then spread to another container which was also destroyed. Luckily fire fighters were able to keep other containers cool enough so that they didn’t also catch fire. The blaze was finally extinguished 4 days later. 150 firefighters and 30 fire trucks and support vehicles attended the fire along with many other multi-agency specialists.

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MIGROS gets the largest salt battery storage facility in Switzerland

It’s great to see the newest installation of the #SoNick batteries in Switzerland by Innovenergy.

This installation is a 540 kWh salt battery storage system and now stands in the basement of MIGROS Schlieren/ZH. The molten salt batteries are 620V SoNick batteries supplied by FZSoNick and inverters by Indrivetec.

The SoNick batteries are charged with a large 806 KW solar PV system.

The purpose of the large-scale project is to save energy costs by optimising self-consumption. The other benefit is to maximise peak shaving which ensures the supermarket doesn’t have a lot of intermittent high energy draws which would increase energy bills substantially.

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What extended power outage teaches us about backup battery power

Recently, after the severe weather event that hit Victoria on 9th June the ABC wrote an article comparing how a few different battery installations performed.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-07-03/battery-power-dandenong-ranges-tesla-agm-grid/100264988

This article pointed out the importance of when purchasing an energy storage battery that it is fit for the purpose that you want it to provide.

Just like many people don’t initially realise that solar arrays don’t operate if the power is disconnected, battery storage systems don’t always work either.

This is fine if you just want a battery energy storage system to provide some load sharing but if you want power when the grid is disconnected the battery has to be capable of being used in an off-grid situation and it has to be wired to allow for this. This usually means the battery inverter is wired in before your solar inverter so that the complete battery and solar PV energy system can operate independently from the grid.

The type and size of your battery system is also important and how much of a battery systems capacity is actually useable. With lead acid and AGM batteries, generally only 30 – 50% of the batteries capacity is useable which means you will need a larger system capacity overall. Also as lead acid and AGM batteries tend to degrade over time and with use this needs to be taken into account when sizing your energy storage system.

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Not all batteries are equal

With many households already having solar PV installations many people are now looking at energy storage systems to upgrade their home energy supply.

One of the most common questions is what battery is best for my needs. There is a lack of knowledge and a great amount of misinformation in the battery storage industry. It is critical to do your own homework and not just believe what salesman / installers are telling you as they are often restrained in their knowledge by the battery brand they are trying to sell.

In an effort to compare battery technologies a company called ITP renewables, in Canberra, set up a battery test site, https://batterytestcentre.com.au/ to conduct longitudinal performance testing of conventional and emerging battery technologies. This is an Arena funded testing facility set up to independently test and compare different battery technologies under Australian conditions for both performance and longevity for a 3 year period. This testing centre was first set up with Phase 1 in 2016 then phase 2 started in 2017. Originally it was for lithium-ion batteries only but now includes other technologies.

The SoNick battery is included in round 3 which started in 2019 and to date showing excellent results. 10 Previous 6 monthly reports are available from the test centre and can be download.at http://batterytestcentre.com.au/reports/

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Protect Yourself from power outages from wind and storm damage

Windy winter weather tends to bring trees down on power lines, cutting off your power supply as many people in Victoria have discovered recently. Many people in Gippsland and the Dandenongs are still without power a week after the storm that raged across Victoria on 9th June.

For many people the need to protect themselves from power outages is becoming a more and more common occurrence and it is not unusual for it to take days for the power to be reconnected, particularly if you are not on a main line and other lines take priority.

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Yarram Circular Economy event – GridEdge report

Recently GridEdge was part of the Yarram Circular Economy event on 23rd May 2021, hosted by Yarram Community Energy. GridEdge in conjunction with Regenerative Resources are working to set up a Renewable Energy Park at the Radial Timbers Sawmill in Yarram with the first stage involving a pyrolysis unit supported by a SoNick battery storage system.

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Renewable Energy Park at Yarram Sawmill

GridEdge is currently involved in a project to create a Renewable Energy Park at the Radial Timbers Sawmill in Yarram.

The project will establish a “Bioenergy Cell” that incorporates the GridEdge SoNick Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) and The Pyrotech Energy Mobile Pyroflash Plant Pyrolysis Unit.

Stage 1 will be the installation of 2 x 100kW solar & 2 x 67.5 kWh battery installations that will be shared with a Yarram community energy group via a benefit sharing model.

Stage 2 of the Renewable Energy Park is to establish a small 2-tonne pyrolysis unit plus SoNick battery storage.

Stage 3 will be the installation a 10-tonne pyrolysis unit plus additional SoNick battery storage

Stage 4 will be the installation of a neighbourhood battery to provide energy for the wider Yarram community.

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Recyclable batteries that do not require maintenance – FZSonick

A chat with Giovanni Zola, General Manager of FZSonick SA of Stabio: the only company in the world that manufactures and markets accumulators (batteries) with the innovative sodium-chloride technology. The same have various fields of application. Let’s find out which ones.

FZSONICK was born from the historical passion of the Dolcetta family for the world of energy which, since the early 2000s, began to take an interest in green batteries. In 2010, following the agreement signed with the Swiss company Mes-Dea, manufacturer of the same type of batteries known as “Zebra”, the current company was born that markets accumulators with the innovative Nickel Sodium Chloride technology commonly also called “Salt Batteries”. For the moment FZSONICK is the only company in the world to produce batteries with this technology. The company is present in Stabio, Switzerland, with a production plant and a research center; in Italy (in the province of Vicenza), it has a sales office as well as in North America (in Elgin, Illinois) for worldwide distribution. With its product lines, FZSONICK currently serves 3 reference markets:

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Battery safety and fire risk

When installing energy storage batteries more people are becoming aware or the risks associated with batteries that have a possibility of going into thermal runaway.

Over the last few years there have been a number of reports of fires and explosions being caused by lithium ion batteries.

‘Zombie batteries’ causing hundreds of waste fires, experts warn

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Reef HQ Aquarium Townsville – Commercial Case Study using SoNick batteries

Reef HQ aquarium was looking to add energy storage batteries to their recently upgraded PV system. One requirement of the battery storage was for it to be as environmentally friendly as possible.

Reef HQ, near the Great Barrier Reef is a large saltwater aquarium with a strong sustainability ethos. The Aquarium is the world’s largest living coral reef aquarium and has many impressive exhibits, showcasing rare and extraordinary features of the Great Barrier Reef .

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