Neighbourhood Battery Initiative (NBI) – Impact of Neighbourhood Batteries on Decarbonisation



External Member

ANU Battery Storage and Grid Integration Program (BSGIP)



Australia’s energy markets are in a period of rapid change, driven by the growth of distributed energy resources (DERs) like renewable energy generation and energy storage technologies. As decarbonisation of Australia’s electricity grid continues, these changes will have a large impact on the network, introducing complexity and challenges regarding supply-demand, load balance, and power flows from distribution systems to the central transmission system. Neighbourhood, or community-scale, batteries (~1-5MW) present an opportunity to mitigate these challenges, deferring the need for network upgrades by providing local energy storage and distribution. Using the shared battery, communities can store energy from their rooftop solar PV, allowing for increased solar PV energy generation (hosting capacity), lower energy costs, and greater energy equity across solar and non-solar energy users.

The impact of neighbourhood batteries can differ significantly depending on the models used to optimise its operation for techno-economic objectives like maximizing owner profits, minimizing customers costs, managing voltage, and maximizing decarbonisation. To ensure neighbourhood batteries positively contribute to the renewable energy transition, decarbonisation algorithms need to be carefully written to optimise how the battery stores local energy and energy from the National Electricity Market (NEM). Factors that need to be considered include the battery’s charging/discharging cycles, time and duration of use, and emissions reduction factors associated with replacement of fossil-fuel powered energy generation in the NEM.

The research outcomes of this project will contribute to the work being conducted for the NBI. The NBI addresses the need for data-driven evidence about the impacts of neighbourhood batteries on decarbonisation, prices and economics, access and equity, and hosting capacity for local renewables. In doing so, it seeks to provide guidance on models for optimisation of these criteria, producing the necessary impact, software, and integration tools to do so.


How to apply

To submit an expression of interest for this project, please email by Monday 14th February 2022 with the subject line: “Student Project EOI: Neighbourhood Battery Initiative (NBI).”

Your email must include all of the following for your application to be considered:

  • Academic transcript(s)
  • CV
  • 1/2-1 page written statement covering your project motivation and goals


Required skills

·       Completed coursework or equivalent experiencing in electronics engineering or renewable energy systems

·       Familiarity with energy systems modelling and data analysis, including use of Python or other programming languages

·       An interest in the project topic, as well as a broader interest in the work of the ANU BSGIP

Suggested skills

·       Completion of ENGN4625 Power Systems and Power Electronics or relevant experience

·       Familiarity with energy system datasets, including AEMO supply/demand data

·       An understanding of renewable energy technologies, energy storage, grid integration, the National Electricity Market (NEM), and/or decarbonisation pathways is desirable

Background Literature

ANU BSGIP Neighbourhood batteries website:

H. Ransan-Cooper, B. C. P. Sturmberg, M. E. Shaw, and L. Blackhall, “Applying responsible algorithm design to neighbourhood-scale batteries in Australia,” Nat Energy, vol. 6, no. 8, pp. 815–823, Aug. 2021, doi: 10.1038/s41560-021-00868-9


renewable energy, energy storage technologies, decarbonisation, neighbourhood batteries, optimisation


Updated:  10 August 2021/Responsible Officer:  Dean, CECS/Page Contact:  CECS Marketing