The Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) has set out compulsory new technical standards that will apply to new and upgraded home rooftop solar panel systems to protect the electricity grid.
The new standards, which will come into effect from December 2021, will apply to inverters, i.e. equipment that converts direct current (DC) to alternating current (AC) that enables electrical devices to function.
They will ensure household energy systems won’t ‘trip’ or disconnect when there are voltage disturbances on the network.
The work is part of on ongoing and larger scale project to embed solar and other distributed energy resources into the overall power system.
AEMC Chief Executive Benn Barr said: “These new minimum technical standards are part of a raft of changes we are looking at to future-proof the power system so it can confidently handle more solar.
“The rapid uptake of solar means we must act now to make sure this technology and the system it uses work hand in hand.
“We need to keep pace with the change underway – nearly three million households and small businesses have taken up solar and the demand for household batteries and electric vehicles will increase over time.”
Other changes being considered by the AEMC include how to change the pricing structure to give incentives to owners of distributed energy resources to export power when it is of most value to the system.