Off-grid solar solution for water disinfection

Thursday, 28 September, 2017

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Logan City Council has combined emerging solar power and a Tesla Powerpack to deliver a solution for water disinfection in the city’s new reservoir.

As explained by City of Logan Mayor Luke Smith, the 20 ML Round Mountain Reservoir was brought into service in 2014 to provide drinking water for residents in Flagstone, Yarrabilba, North Maclean, Spring Mountain and Woodhill.

“This is set to be one of the fastest growing areas in South-East Queensland over the next two decades, but with that growth comes the issue of building assets larger than are needed right now,” Mayor Smith said.

“We were concerned until demand increases, water stored in the network may age and not stay at the highest possible quality. We decided there was a need for a dedicated water chlorination station at the reservoir.

“The reservoir site is not connected to mains power or accessible via a sealed road, so an innovative approach was required to maintain water quality from the reservoir.”

Mayor Smith said a number of options were investigated, with a solar-powered electrochlorination facility confirmed as the preferred technology. The project was delivered by Logan Water Infrastructure Alliance, while battery and solar provider CSR Bradford was engaged to supply and install the system.

The Tesla-supported micro-power grid and electrochlorinator will provide around-the-clock solar power to help maintain local drinking water quality 24 hours a day. The project has already delivered the Logan City Council a capital cost saving of $1.9 million and operational cost savings valued at almost $50,000 per year. Up to 200,000 people are expected to benefit from the solution by the time the region is fully developed.

CSR Bradford Business Manager Ashleigh O’Brien said the project is the first off-grid commercial solar and battery system in Australia powered by the Tesla Powerpack, and showcases the growing potential for Australian assets to achieve energy security through solar and battery technology.

“The project involved the Bradford team working with Tesla to design and install a solar PV and commercial battery solution which will work harmoniously in response to the site’s real-time energy requirements, and its success signals further potential to roll this technology out across the country,” she said.

“The electrochlorinator is powered by 323 solar panels and a 95 kWh capacity Tesla Powerpack that will help provide water quality 24 hours a day.

“With commercial power prices soaring and home owners increasingly struggling to pay their bills, CSR Bradford stands ready to demonstrate how improvements in battery technology and solar can empower asset owners, bring down prices and safeguard them against the risk of shortages in the electricity market.”

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