SA steps up battery manufacture

Multinational battery manufacturer Alpha-ESS has increased its production in South Australia, with the aim to double its production by 2020.

At its assembly site in Lonsdale, the China-headquartered company will produce 500 battery systems per month for the rest of 2019, with production to hit 1000 systems a month next year.

“As one of the pioneer manufacturers in the energy storage market in South Australia, we are pleased Alpha-ESS is expanding its production outfit, providing a boost for local jobs and industries,” said Minister for Energy and Mining Dan van Holst Pellekaan.

Alpha-ESS managing director, Dr Dong Lin, highlighted how batteries from the company will support a renewable energy transition in the state.

“We are now ready to bring our investment and operation to the next level, to boost the energy transition in South Australia,” said Lin.

The batteries will be utilised not only for domestic use but will form part of a virtual power plant (VPP) established by ShineHub and energy retailer Powershop.

The potential of the VPP in part depends upon the local production of batteries, highlighted ShineHub CEO, Alex Georgiou.

“We’ve managed to develop a scheme that utilises locally assembled batteries and makes it cheaper for households to adopt solar and storage and reduce their power bills,” said Georgiou.

If purchasing a battery through the ShineHub VPP, customers will save up to $7,000 per battery and receive a payment from Powershop when the battery is required to feed energy back into the grid.

According to ShineHub, this could lead users to save $300 per year on energy bills, in addition to savings from the solar panels and battery.