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Course Outline


Renewable energy resources and conversion technologies for electricity generation

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  • Australia’s renewable energy resources within the broader global context – what are the key resources and where are they located?
  • Electricity generation from renewable energy resources – how do these technologies compare to conventional electricity generation?
  • Current status of renewable energy generation technologies and future prospects – will they become more mature and cost-competitive?

Renewable energy, energy security, climate change and enhanced sustainability

  • Current status and future availability and price trends for fossil fuel, nuclear and renewable energy electricity generation
  • What contributions can renewable energy make to energy security and climate change mitigation?
  • What interactions are there with other key issues – such as food and water security?
  • How can we assess sustainability? What are reasonable expectations?

Temporal aspects of renewable energy integration

  • Temporal characteristics of renewable energy resources and electricity generation
  • Short, medium and long term temporal issues for renewable energy integration
  • Renewable energy generator status in the NEM – scheduled, semi-scheduled or non-scheduled; market or non-market
  • The role of energy and frequency control ancillary service (FCAS) spot and derivative markets in managing temporal variability and uncertainty in the NEM
  • The role of complementarity in managing temporal issues – between different renewable energy generators and with respect to other electricity industry resources
  • Can “smart grid” concepts help in renewable energy integration?

Forecasting for renewable energy generation

  • What is uncertain about the behaviour of renewable energy resources and electricity generation? To what extent can we predict future behaviour?
  • Forecasting case study: the Australian Wind Energy Forecasting System and supplementary techniques to predict large rapid changes in wind energy generation

Economic aspects of renewable energy integration

  • Cash flows associated with the national electricity market – spot energy and FCAS markets and associated derivative markets
  • Renewable energy certificates
  • Feed-in tariffs
  • Other policy measures such as carbon pricing

Planning procedures and safety issues for renewable energy projects

  • Planning approval processes for renewable energy projects and “best practice” guidelines
  • Safety issues associated with renewable energy projects – mechanical failure, fire, electrocution and emissions

Progress to date and future prospects

  • Current status of renewable energy technologies and anticipated performance and cost improvements
  • Current status of renewable energy integration and future prospects and challenges

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