Energy system transformation

Learn about some of the systems behind our country's energy transformation.

Distributed Energy Network Optimisation Platform (DENOP)

DENOP is a cloud-based software platform that integrates to customer’s distributed energy resources (DER) and can coordinate these resources to deliver improved network performance and customer experience. With the growing interest in DER and its rapid uptake, not only are distribution networks facing new issues but there is also a big opportunity to use these resources and optimise them in ways that benefits both customers and distribution networks.

Diagram of a distributed energy network optimisation platform with network operational environment, customer distributed energy resources, network data and external data like weather feeding into it.

Why was the trial important?

DENOP implements the concept where DER actively contributes to help the network run more efficiently and ultimately provide customers with lower electricity bills. Through careful orchestration of solar resources, more capacity is made available for other customers to connects and allow them to increase their total solar generation.

What did the trial investigate?

With DENOP, active DER management can be harnessed to run the network more efficiently by:

  • Using battery storage to balance power flows
  • Managing solar to smooth network voltages
  • Energy management to improve network utilisation
  • Increasing the amount of solar that can be installed on the network
  • Increasing the amount of solar generation that can be produced per customer
  • Reliability is respectively improved when managing all the above

What's next for DENOP?

There is a strategy in place that sets the direction through to 2025 for continued development of DENOP functions and capabilities, and staged deployment as a 'Business As Usual (BaU)' solution. The high degree of change and uncertainty in the DER space means that the strategy can only provide a direction, not a fixed work program. Flexibility is required to adapt and re-prioritise on a continual basis.

Distribution Service Operator (DSO)

Australian consumers have, over the past 10 years, invested heavily in rooftop solar. As customers continue to adopt new energy technologies such as battery storage systems, smart appliances and electric vehicles, the grid is becoming increasingly decentralised. These distributed energy resources (DER) will pave the way for a cleaner, smarter electricity system. However, this transition from traditional one-way power flows to two-way flows poses challenges for Distribution Network Service Providers (DNSPs) such as AusNet Services.

The new role of the Distribution System Operator (DSO) will include ensuring reliability and efficiency in the operation of systems that have distributed energy resources (DERs). This can consist of the maintenance and management of the distribution system, with a key factor being the integration of all elements of the system. The move to DSOs would mean they undertake the duties of a DNSP but with increased responsibilities bought on by new technologies and flexibility of distributed resources.

AusNet Services is actively participating in Open Energy Networks, a nation-wide project bringing together network businesses, the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) and key stakeholders to understand how best to integrate DER into the grid, test the DSO model and deliver the most value for customers.