DER Compliance for small embedded generation
South Australia is leading the world in distributed energy resources (DER) such as rooftop solar and home batteries. DER is now required to be 'smart' and able to interact with the energy system. This is driving changes to standards and the connections process, requiring new capabilities from the solar industry and increasing the importance of compliance of any installed systems to these standards.
Important areas of DER compliance include:
- Installation, commissioning and close out of the job as part of the connections processes, including closing all installations using SA Power Networks’ SmartInstall.
- The remote disconnection and reconnection as determined by SA Government regulations.
- Dynamic Export limit requirements as determined by SA Government regulations.
- Power quality settings on inverters (Volt/VAr and Volt/Watt)
All DER equipment must be applied for, installed and commissioned in line with National and State regulations, and SA Power Networks standards. Current areas of compliance for DER are:
- Applying for approval to install DER through SmartApply
- Installing & commissioning correct Power quality settings on inverters (Volt/VAr and Volt/Watt) (Technical Standard - TS129)
- Close out of DER using SA Power Networks’ SmartInstall, including correct setting for Flexible Export sites
- The remote disconnection / re-connection and dynamic export limit requirements as determined by the SA Government's 'Smarter Homes' regulations
We are working to double the amount of solar we can accommodate on our network by 2025. Getting compliance right for all small embedded generation (SEG) systems means we can:
- Ensure supply and reduce the risk of widespread power outages
- Provide all customers fair access to the network and unlock future potential for solar and batteries in SA
- Support continued DER uptake rather than constrain the solar exports as we have seen in other states, which contributes to the growth of the solar industry
- Better plan and operate the network to enable this future
Our goal is to ensure that every approved and installed system meets DER compliance requirements.
Installation information collected through SmartInstall is different from eCoC, and is essential for SA Power Networks to plan and operate the network safely, while continuing to support DER uptake.
The first step towards achieving DER compliance is to ensure every installation is closed out in SmartInstall.
Here are some things you can do to meet your DER Compliance responsibilities:
- Utilise our Quick Reference Guide to achieve compliance throughout the small embedded generation process from selling the equipment, to close-out
- Use the Inverter Manufacturers training materials for support with commissioning of Flexible Exports sites
- Use SmartApply to check what sites you have approval for but are not closed out. You will find this under your 'Non Compliant' tab in the SmartApply app. Contact your installer to close out these applications in SmartInstall.
- Make sure you use SmartInstall to close out installations and complete the capability test for Flexible Export sites.
- If you have applications that are approved but the install has not, or will not, go ahead, these applications should be cancelled. Click the 'Settings' button then 'Cancel Application'.
- In partnership with the Clean Energy Council we have developed two free training courses, ‘SA Power Networks Embedded Generation Compliance for SA’, and ‘What you need to know about flexible exports’ both for 30 Core CPD points. They are available by logging into the Clean Energy Council Learning Hub. To enrol, enter the enrolment key ‘SAPNtraining’.
- Reach out to us if you require support or advice on how to close out your non-compliant applications.
Meeting DER Compliance
What happens if I don’t meet distributed energy resources (DER) compliance requirement?
Frequently Asked Questions
A list of the most frequently asked DER Compliance questions and their answers.
Important information and useful links for staying DER Compliant