Vast Solar CSP – First Australian Commercial-Scale Plant
With commissioning, detailed testing and analysis of plant performance at the CSP Pilot Plant well underway since early 2018, Vast Solar have been working to develop our first 30MW commercial-scale CSP plant. This 30 MW CSP plant will be part of a 50MW hybrid project for which detailed planning, design and development is currently well advanced.
The 50MW hybrid project proposes to combine a 30MW concentrating solar thermal power plant with 10 hours of storage and a 20MW (possibly 19MWac) photovoltaic (PV) solar plant coupled to 4MWh of battery storage.
Vast Solar will develop and locate this exciting hybrid project in regional Australia.
Vast Solar’s first commercial-scale CSP plant will deliver firm renewable power to the grid and demonstrate how CSP decouples the variability in solar collection from electricity generation.
The 30MW CSP plant will be Australia’s first commercial-scale, grid connected CSP project and represent a key stage in the culmination of Vast Solar’s CSP technology development and commercialisation. It will showcase Vast Solar CSP technology and Australian engineering innovation as it delivers power to the grid, providing electricity to meet the needs of up to 15 000 average homes – with the PV plant component providing further power to the grid.
Designed to have a 25 year operating life, the project will incorporate engineering design, control systems and component manufacturing and configuration improvements garnered from the research, development and commissioning phases developed and delivered at the 1.1MW CSP Pilot Plant at Jemalong.
Vast Solar’s 30MW CSP plant will provide a much-needed reference point for the role that CSP technology can play in Australia’s energy system. It will deliver affordable, dispatchable renewable energy, add value to the regional economy and contribute to sustainable change in the nation’s energy system. And it will do so using home grown Australian technology, engineering innovation and design that delivers a plant layout that is sensitive to local cultural and conservation values.
In 2014 the environmental planning and development approvals process was initiated and progressed in NSW to develop Vast Solar’s first commercial scale plant at Jemalong. This development application was withdrawn in 2018. The Company continues to hold a CSP site at Jemalong for potential future development.
The decision to re-locate Vast Solar’s first commercial-scale plant to an other location in regional Australia was made in late 2018 in response to substantial opportunities that have become potentially available to the Company.