Microgrid for defence base

Carnegie is developing a 2 MW solar PV and 2 MW/0.5 MWh energy storage microgrid at the HMAS Stirling naval base at Garden Island, 61 kilometres south of Perth. ARENA provided $28.5 million in combined grant funding for the Microgrid Project, which will be the world’s first wave energy integrated microgrid and desalination facility.

The project will include augmentation of the grid connection and incorporate the wave energy installed as part of Carnegie’s CETO 6 Project, and the desalination plant previously installed in parallel with the Perth Wave Energy Project.

For those curious about wave energy, CETO sits underwater and is moored to the sea floor, with minimal visual impact above the water. Buoys fitted with warning lights sit on a mast above water. CETO units operate in deep water, away from breaking waves, meaning there is minimal impact on popular surfing sites.

The name is inspired by the Greek ocean goddess, Ceto.

ARENA says the Microgrid project will demonstrate high penetration variable renewable energy contribution in islanded and grid-connected configurations, with the capacity to switch between the production of power and desalinated water, making it unique and innovative.

The project will also help accelerate the commercialisation of Carnegie’s CETO wave energy technology by demonstrating the technology as a renewable energy and water solution in an island/offgrid-ready microgrid setting.

On the historic front: A 4.2 kilometre causeway linking Garden island with the mainland was completed in 1973, and the construction of Stirling’s wharves and workshops began. Stirling was formally commissioned on July 28, 1978.

Today it is the largest base in the RAN and is home to more than 2,300 service personnel, 600 Defence civilians and 500 long-term contractors.

HMAS Stirling honours Captain James Stirling of the Royal Navy who landed on Garden Island in 1827 and returned two years later to found the first European settlement in Western Australia.