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When clouds block out the sun at a solar farm at Lake Nash, near the Queensland and Northern Territory border, a project officer 2,000km away in Sydney knows within the hour.
Even better, if things go wrong, he can access the system and keep the solar power station working at the small, mostly Aboriginal community, without leaving his desk.
The solar farm is part of Epuron’s TKLN Solar project, which has sites at three Northern Territory communities – Ti Tree, Kalkarindji and Lake Nash (also known as Alpurrurulam).
The solar power system at Lake Nash has 1,548 solar panels which produce 272kWp electrical power, displacing the need for diesel fuel that otherwise would be transported into the community.
The site also has three wind turbines, which together with the solar power, generates electricity directly connected into the Power and Water Corporation electricity grid.
According to Epuron’s Solar Asset Manager Daniel Gilbert, Lake Nash is an Aboriginal community about as far from anywhere is you could get.
“It is a long way from the nearest town – 600km by sealed road from Tennant Creek or 200km by track from Mt Isa – and access can be difficult in the wet season,” Dan says.
“Because it is so remote, we need reliable communications for monitoring and control purposes.”
With Orion’s support the Lake Nash facility sends data to the Epuron head office every hour where changes in solar output is monitored.
Dan says Orion’s service has been excellent.
“Because we rely on managing the site remotely it is essential we have reliable service, regardless of the weather or other factors.”
“My main concern is that the system works and it does.”
While we can’t always control the weather, Orion keeps businesses connected rain, hail or shine.
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