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All about Battery storage systems

Battery storage is the latest trend in energy which aims at reducing costs of energy and reducing the uncertainty involved with the supply of the same. The question is will you be actively involved in this trend that is spreading fast through the country?

Do your interests lie within the general scope of battery information and knowledge, and using this information to expand your business? Do your trading partners often enquire about this kind of storage solution?

This next section is dedicated entirely to address these concerns and many more NECA issues but first we will discuss the frequently used terms used in battery solutions, coupled with the set Australian standards.

Important terms with relation to Australian Standards

As mentioned above we will start by looking at terms and references as they are used throughout the Australian regulations and standards which include the battery storage –AS/NZS 5139.

  1. 1.     Battery Energy Storage System- BESS

This involves a battery system that consists of power conversion equipment, PCE. This BESS may come from the factory as a complete package which is all integrated into a single unit.

  1. 2.     Power conversion Equipment-PCE

This is a device powered by electricity which converts one form of electrical power into another. Examples of this include, solar charge controllers among many others

  1. 3.     Battery Management System-BMS

This is a system involving of an electric regulator for the control of charge and discharge of removable batteries coupled with internal software logic. Its primary function is to oversee important elements such as voltage and temperature, DOD (depth of charge ) just to mention a few. Another job it serves to do is to protect batteries from a possible overheating scenario

  1. 4.     Hybrid Inverter

It has a capability to connect loads by maximizing solar power, utility power and battery power. Designed to power the given power loads to its renewable source the internal logic can charge the interconnected batteries and transfer excessive power to the grid. This type of Inverter is known as a smart grid inverter or an intelligent inverter.



Electrical Standards and Battery Storage

When it comes to the Australian standards there are many that could be applicable for the safe use and installation of batteries and battery storage systems in grid connect and energy systems that stand alone. In as much as these standards have arguably the same content, it can be said that much of them do not stretch to cover the larger picture in battery systems. To curb this Australia are deep in the process of curving out a new standard AS/NZS 5139. The incoming rules and regulations will cover installation and safety requirements clearly outlining the dangers and risks that are involved with battery systems and installation processes that seek to minimize these risks. This is the first of many standards across the battery system products that will be changed over the course of the next years. Below is a list of standards that are applicable to the present battery storage systems.

AS/NZS 4777.1: 2016 The Grid Connection of Energy systems through the inverters- Installation Necessities

This particular standard stipulates the electrical and general safety with regards to the installation necessities for inverter energy systems (IES) up to or equal to 200 kVA for the inoculation of electric power to an electrical installation which is connected to the grid at low voltage.

The primary intention of this standard is to clearly lay out the safety and installation requirements for the IES which is intended for the injection of electrical power through an electrical installation to the main grid.

IES are distributed energy resources when connecting to the grid and it is essential to ensure general safe procedure of the installation and contact with the broader grid.


AS/NZS 5033:2014 Installation and safety requirements for Photovoltaic (PV)

The above standard provides the manuscript related with general installation and safety requirements for photovoltaic (PV) arrays that include, electrical safety devices, switching and earthing up to but does not include energy storage devices and given loads. Provisions that are concerned with power conversion equipment are roofed only where DC safety issues are also tangled with. Small DC conditioning units specified primarily with connection to one or two PV modules are involved.

The main function of this standard is to sustain and advance the safety of PV arrays. The safety necessities of this particular standard are crucially reliant on the set of inverters that are associated with PV arrays that fulfil the requirements of IEC 62109-1 and IEC 62109-2 and all power conversion equipment which complies with IEC 62109 series ideals. PV arrays in portable equipment that are less than 240W and less than 50V open circuit voltage at standard test condition (STC) are not covered by this Standard. PV arrays of greater than 240kW at STC are not under this particular standard.

AS/NZS 4509.1:2009 Stand-alone Power Systems – Safety and Installation

The mentioned above standard seeks to provide safety and installation requirements for stand-alone power systems that are typically used for the supply of extra-low (ELV) and/or low voltage (LV) electric power to a solitary load, or an electrical setting up in a single residence or building, or a group of residences or buildings and are linked items with switchboards to AS/NZS 3000 necessities.

This particular standard gives an outline of the output of the system, over-current protection necessities for the user’s mains and earthing provisions directing connections to single loads, single installations & groups of independent installations.

NOTE: This type of connection specified above from the output of the stand-alone power system to the electrical setting up is regarded as consumer mains as referenced in AS/NZS 3000 standard. This given standard, coupled with additional safety necessities, should be applied to systems with energy storage at fairly low voltage. For system designs deliberations, one should refer to AS 4509.2 and Appendix A for the given system upkeep.

DR AS/NZS 5139:2017 (Draft) Electrical Installations – Safety of battery systems to go hand in hand with power conversion equipment

The standard mentioned above aims to dictate the general installation and safety necessities and requirements of battery energy systems in which the battery is mounted on-site in an closed surrounding or battery room, and is linked to a PCE to supply electric power to other parts of an electrical set up.

This will apply to battery energy systems that are fixed on the spot and battery energy systems that are unified with inverter energy systems. The construction of these integrated systems is quite outside the scope of this document. The manual installation of the complete integrated system outlined in this standard will be used for these systems.

It is important to note that there are other standards not mentioned above but are applicable depending on the type of application on hand. These would involve lead acid and alkaline batteries for the use of tertiary batteries applications in buildings.


For the latest information, acronyms and Australian Standards, and general know how please feel free contact NECA or login to NECA TKB - Technical Knowledge Base using your NECA membership credentials.


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