Australia: Ground breaking power system

Australia: Ground breaking power system

At Muswellbrook, New South Wales, in Australia a ground-breaking solar energy project was launched on 7 November 2014. The first communication tower in Australia, running solely on solar energy, was integrated by Photon Energy and is a part of the worldwide dena Renewable Energy Solutions Program coordinated by Deutsche Energie-Agentur GmbH (dena) - the German Energy Agency - and co-financed by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) within the initiative “renewables – Made in Germany“.

The telecom tower is using predominantly German technology, like a 39 kWp solar power installation using 216 kWh of lead acid batteries and an 8 kVA diesel back-up system for emergencies. The solar panels were delivered by Q CELLS Q-PRO (156 Q CELLS Q-PRO G3 255Wp), SMA contributes 3 8.0H Sunny Island inverters and Photon Energy a 24/7 monitoring system. The BAE batteries (72 BAE Secura PVV 2V 1500 Ah) were supplied by the distributor of BAE in Australia, R+J Batteries.

The pilot project of advanced battery storage technology ensures that during daylight hours the solar power is captured via a 215 kWh battery storage and will replace the old tower’s existing power supply system. Communication towers are important for entertainment, communications and vital in emergency situations and have to operate 24/7. The new system is able to give a constant and reliable round-the-clock power supply even in remote areas.

Broadcast Australia, BAI, which operates one of the most extensive broadcast transmission networks in the world, now uses this advanced technology for the first time in the communication sector and “is excited to be at the forefront” with integrating this, said Jim Hassel, BAI Group CEO. Michael Gartner, Photon Energy Australia Managing Director explained that “the system has been designed to be rugged and reliable with the choice of the highest quality Australian outback tested Q CELLS solar panels, SMA inverters and BAE batteries to provide maximum power and longevity in the toughest Australian conditions”.

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Case Study: Broadcast Tower, Australia