The Bulgana Green power hub (BGPH) is a renewable energy generation and storage facility under construction in Wimmera, Victoria, Australia. It will comprise a 194MW onshore wind farm and a 20MW/34MWh battery energy storage system (BESS).
The integrated facility is being developed and will be operated by Bulgana Wind Farm, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Neoen, an independent power producer (IPP) based in France.
Neoen signed a 15-year support agreement with the Government of Victoria to deliver the Bulgana Green power hub in December 2017.
Construction on the £197m (A$350m) project was started in May 2018, after reaching financial closure in March 2018.
The first turbine of the wind farm was erected in February 2019, while the entire project is scheduled for commissioning by the end of 2019.
The Bulgana Green power hub is expected to generate 750,000MWh of clean and renewable electricity a year, which will be enough to power approximately 130,000 households in Victoria.
Bulgana Green power hub location and site details
The Bulgana clean energy project is being developed on a 7,500ha-site in the Wimmera region of central-western Victoria, 11km north-east of Stawell and 200km north-west of Melbourne.
The site is accessible by the Vances Crossing Road.
Bulgana Green power hub make-up
The onshore wind farm being developed as part of the project will be equipped with 56 SG 3.4-132 turbines from Siemens Gamesa.
With 132m-diameter rotor and 64.5m-long blades, each SG 3.4-132 turbine will have a swept area of 13,685m² and a rated power output of 3.465MW.
Equipped with doubly-fed induction generators, the turbines are designed to generate electricity at 690V voltage either in 50Hz or 60Hz frequencies.
The SG 3.4-132 turbines are suitable for medium and high wind speed locations and can operate at a temperature range between -20ºC and 30ºC.
The 56 turbines of the wind farm will be configured in four collector groups. The electricity generated by the turbines will be sent to a 33kV onsite substation.
Tesla will supply a 20MW/34MWh lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery storage system to be installed at the hub.
Power transmission and off-take
The electricity from the Bulgana Green power hub will be evacuated to the national grid through an overhead transmission line connecting a new 220kV terminal station near the Vances Crossing Road.
The terminal station will be further connected with Ausnet’s existing 220kV transmission line between Ararat Terminal Station (ARTS) and Horsham Terminal Station (HOTS).
Approximately 15% of the electricity output of the facility will be sold to Nectar Farms to power a new hydroponic glasshouse facility at Stawell, Victoria, under a ten-year power purchase agreement (PPA). Entirely powered by renewable energy, the new agricultural facility will supply vegetables to Australian as well as international market.
The remaining electricity from the Bulgana energy complex will be fed into the national grid.
The £197m (A$350m) Bulgana Green power project is being financed through a combination of equity and a long-term debt financing secured from KfW IPEX-Bank, Societe Generale, and Korea Development Bank in March 2018.
Elgar Middleton and Baker McKenzie acted as advisors for the project financing.
Siemens Gamesa was awarded the engineering procurement, and construction contract (EPC) for the wind farm in April 2018.
It will supply 56 turbines as well as provide operations and maintenance (O&M) services for a period of 25 years, as part of the contract.
Tesla is the supplier of the battery storage system for the project, while AusNet Services was contracted to develop the transmission infrastructure.
WSP has been engaged by the project lenders to provide independent engineer services.