Solar PV R&DProject SA Power Networks Flexible Exports for Solar PV Trial
This report summarises the findings of SA Power Networks, AusNet and trial collaboration to develop a new Flexible Exports offer for solar PV customers who would otherwise be subject to zero or near-zero solar export limits. This new option enabled customers to export energy to the network most of the time, with exports only limited during the few specific periods when the network is constrained.
At the beginning of the trial, project partners and broader industry recognised that a nationally agreed communications interface was critical to efficiently integrating CER with distribution networks across the country. Key early work for this project was to develop a draft specification for an Australian version of the Common Smart Inverter Profile (CSIP) IEEE 2030.5 implementation guide that had been developed for the Californian market. The project successfully delivered a draft to the national DER API Technical Working
Group (DERAPITWG) in 2021, which how now been converted into a Standards Australia handbook (SA HB 218 CSIP-AUS) and is being used to support Flexible Exports rollouts in South Australia, Victoria, and Queensland.
New technology was developed by all partners to support the Flexible Exports connection option. SwitchDin developed a modular IEEE 2030.5 CSIP-AUS compliant utility server that was used by SA Power Networks and AusNet to communicate flexible export limits to customer sites. This Utility Server was modular by design to provide other DNSPs fast path to market at trial completion.
Additionally, both SA Power Networks and AusNet developed new operational systems to calculate and publish flexible export limits. Both DNSPs integrated with SwitchDin’s modular utility server via common interface, demonstrating the portability of the solution. Changes to the DNSP installer facing systems and/or processes were also made to enable Flexible Exports to be offered.