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Next generation energy forecasting

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Live demonstration of gridded, automatic renewable generation forecasts in South Australia (SA) is set to lead the way for a national roll-out of next-generation energy forecasting.

ARENA awarded $994,685 in funding to Solcast to conduct its Gridded Renewables Nowcasting Demonstration project.

Solcast will develop a forecasting tool which will track and predict renewable output in real time. Solcast’s forecasting tool will aim to predict up to six hours ahead in five-minute increments, distributed into 1-2km grids across SA.

The 12-month project will deliver more frequently updated, high resolution weather forecasts specifically designed for the Australian energy industry.

Solcast will track the real-time evolution of weather systems over SA and forecast the positions and characteristics of cloud cover, as well as improve predictions of wind-speeds at the wind turbine nacelles (above ground) enabling energy generation to be forecast with greater accuracy.

The forecasts will also focus on six hour ahead forecasting to provide more accurate information for grid operation and enhanced management of generation, energy storage, and demand response.

Solcast will utilise a range of data sets and data streams, including historical surface meteorological measurement data and wind and solar farm weather data, to develop high quality forecasts.

These forecasts will be shared via project partners, Weatherzone and TESLA Asia Pacific, to be assessed and used by the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO), the local distribution network operator (SA Power Networks), and generator asset operators.

This initiative aims to provide the energy industry with enhanced situational awareness and more precise forecasts to support the management of the grid. As part of its commitment and support of the project, AEMO will undertake a key role in testing and verifying the project outputs.

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