Posted: 18 June 2019

Tonsley Innovation District is proud to be part of a new collaboration with OZ Minerals announced today to develop opportunities to integrate renewable energy systems on mining sites and optimise electrical and fuel demand.

The University of Adelaide, CSIRO, the Department of Energy and Mining, energy non-profit research group Rocky Mountain Institute and mobile solar power plant manufacturer SunSHIFT are also members of the Energy and Mining Collaboration (EMC).

The group will investigate the potential for renewable energy and demand management at OZ Minerals’ Carapateena mine in far northern South Australia.

The EMC will bring together research and education institutions, established businesses and start-ups, business incubators, government, and non-governmental organisations to become the first recognised collaboration platform for renewable energy and demand management related activities on a mine site.

Mining and renewable energy are two of the focus sectors at Tonsley, Australia’s leading innovation district. Precinct Director Phil Dautel welcomed the EMC, which he said would exemplify Tonsley’s approach to innovation through collaboration between businesses and research organisations.

“Conventional methods of procurement and collaboration in the mining industry often don’t reflect the true value of partnerships, innovation and value creation for the stakeholders involved,” he said.

“The EMC will take a different approach, including input from industry, suppliers, universities, research institutes, start-ups, governments and non-government organisations. “

Philipp Dautel, Tonsley Precinct Director

The EMC will test energy and technology hypotheses to unlock transformational value in mining.

The founding collaborators are committed to formalising the partnerships from this collaboration over the next six months and will invite other stakeholders to join to create a broad and global membership.

The first EMC project will be a trial installation of hybrid energy solution facility in the first half of 2020 at Carrapateena in an area demarcated for piloting and prototyping.

The facility to be tested will have capacity to generate about 250 kilowatts. It will include solar and wind energy generation, battery storage, connection to existing diesel generators, plus a Smart Grid controller for data access and tracking.

OZ Minerals’ Carrapateena project in far northern South Australia is on track for first concentrate production in the four quarter of 2019, then the project will ramp up to full production over the following 18 months.