Skip to Content
Project overview
  • Lead Organisation

    Solar and Storage Modelling Pty Ltd


    South Australia

    ARENA Program

    Advancing Renewables Program

  • Start date

    30 March 2020

    End date

    30 June 2022

  • Project Partners
    AEMO, The Weather Company, Energy Australia, SA Power Networks and TESLA Asia Pacific
    This renewables project was completed on 30 June 2022.


Solcast will develop a proof of concept demonstration of a forecasting tool which will track and predict renewable energy output over South Australia in real time.

Key results

Solcast developed a proof of concept demonstration of a forecasting tool which tracks and predicts renewable energy output over South Australia in real time. Forecasting renewable energy generator outputs is difficult due to their variable output being dictated by the availability of sun and wind.

Using high-resolution rapidly updating satellite data, and real-time ground observations, the forecasts produced in the ‘Nowcasting’ Project demonstrated lower error than existing forecast methodologies. The ‘Nowcasting’ methodology is anticipated to increase in value as higher penetrations of variable renewable energy enter the generation mix.


The Gridded Renewables Nowcasting Demonstration project acknowledges that forecasting electricity generation from renewable energy resources on a day ahead or short-term basis is essential for the management of networks with high shares of renewable energy.

Existing technologies used to predict the ‘nowcasting’ (i.e. 5 minutes to 6 hours ahead) forecast horizon are based on numerical weather programs, which update two to four times per day.

These models leave gaps in the nowcast predictions, which can affect the security and reliability of electricity supply.


The Gridded Renewables Nowcasting Demonstration project will demonstrate nowcasting technology over South Australia, which will utilise a range of data sets and data streams, including historical surface meteorological measurement data and wind and solar farm weather data, to develop high quality forecasts. These forecasts will be shared via project partners, Weatherzone and TESLA Asia Pacific, to be assessed and used by AEMO, the local distribution network operator (SA Power Networks), and generator asset operators.

The project forecasting methodologies will be capable of accurately predicting renewable energy generation on the nowcasting horizon, including ramping events and periods of suppressed generation, with a gridded, rapidly-updating, spatially aware forecast model.


This initiative aims to provide the energy industry with enhanced situational awareness and more precise forecasts to support the management of the grid.

Additional impact

Solcast will author a public knowledge sharing report highlighting the outcomes of the project including the forecast performance, economic impact/value on the grid, and use cases for the technology.

Last updated 04 March 2023


What is electricity system strength and why does it matter?

It will take more than just renewable generation to build a strong, resilient energy system.

Solcast wind and cloud forecasts to help balance SA grid

A new project will use weather forecasts to predict the future output of South Australian wind and solar farms.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Back to top