The Kennedy Energy Park is a hybrid renewable energy facility situated in Hughenden in North Queensland developed in a partnership between Windlab and Eurus. This project will consist of 15MW solar photovoltaic (PV), 43.2MW wind and a 2MW/4MWh lithium ion battery storage facility.
How the project works
North Queensland’s energy network faces unique challenges. The majority of Queensland’s energy is generated in the southern parts of the state; transporting energy to the northern parts of the state can be costly and inefficient.
Kennedy Energy Park will provide 60MW of renewable energy closer to the point of use, relieving demand on long transmission lines.
The project will test the viability of the combined wind, solar, storage approach and lay the foundations for a planned second phase, ‘Big Kennedy’.
If successfully developed, Big Kennedy will provide a considerable renewable energy presence in North Queensland. It is planned to include up to 1200MW of solar and wind with the potential for multiple storage options including large-scale battery and regional pumped hydro storage for the region.
Read more about hybrid technologies.
This project will supply reliable renewable energy to the local community. It will also be crucial in the development of the proposed ‘Big Kennedy’ project that could involve a much larger injection of renewable energy into the North Queensland network.
Partnering battery storage with wind and solar energy generation in a single location allows renewable energy to be stored for use at peak usage times and when needed most. With solar producing during the day, wind mainly at night, and the battery available to smooth out any variability, the plant will provide more continuous energy generation.
This project will help complement a variety of existing works within Ergon Energy’s network, including Cook Shire, Barcaldine and Normanton solar farms. These projects are helping to deliver more reliable energy to fringe-of- grid locations.
Area of innovation
Kennedy enjoys one of the best and largest wind resources in Australia, alongside one of the best solar resources.
Kennedy Energy Park will be the first time a combined large-scale solar, wind and battery installation has connected to Australia’s national electricity market. It will test the technologies in combination to see if the plant can provide dispatchable power over a 24 hour period.
ARENA will be working closely with Windlab, Eurus and local network provider Ergon Energy to form a knowledge-sharing portfolio on the progress and lessons learnt over the course of construction.
Renewable energy is not without limitations and prominent among them is variability. The sun does not always shine, nor the wind always blow.