System security and reliabilityProject AEMO Connections Tool Project
This project aims to develop a Connections Simulation Tool (CST) to help developers, Network Service Providers (NSPs), and AEMO collaborate using common data sets to rapidly verify that prospective generators can be safely connected to the electricity network.
Connection applicants can utilise the CST to perform studies incorporating new plant models with the same large-scale power system model used internally by AEMO to assess connection applications. In doing so, connection applicants are able to better design their generating system and have increased confidence that the study outcomes will meet the required acceptance criteria. The objective is to significantly streamline the application process, reducing the risk, costs, and completion timeframe.
The implementation of the CST was a complex software development project which incorporated new capabilities, including:
- Implementation of cyber security measures that allowed AEMO to receive plant models (including executable files) via AEMO’s public web portal, and
- Automation of the “on-demand” creation of virtual machines with preconfigured PSCAD applications.
Throughout the implementation of the CST, working groups, trial users and respondents to a request for Expression of Interest all indicated strong support for the CST, with 54 positive responses across a range of project types. Since the CST was launched in November 2022, 14 organisations have signed Service Access Agreements to enable the use of the CST, with two organisations actively using the CST currently.
The initial users have confirmed that the CST has benefited their connection applications, delivering:
- The ability to assess their new plant models connected to a full NEM model, and with AEMO’s support assessed their model against project specific settings, measurements and faults
- AEMO cloud infrastructure and AEMO supplied PSCAD licences, avoiding the need to invest in their own systems.
AEMO continues to engage with industry to promote the benefits of the CST, and develop complementary tools and approaches