Australia’s first remote mobile communications tower powered by a standalone power system (SPS) has been officially launched in Esperance in Western Australia, and is expected to reduce carbon emissions and improve community safety.

The SPS unit is powered by eight kilowatt (kW) solar panels, a 16.8kW hour battery and a 26kW back-up generator, which together can deliver 12kW of continuous power.

This will enable the tower to continue operating during natural disasters and emergencies, which may impact a traditional network of poles and wires, keeping the local community connected and informed at crucial times.

The system was delivered by Horizon Power and its joint venture partner, Boundary Power.

In addition to this program, the Western Australian Government has committed to delivering 1,000 standalone power systems over five years across regional Western Australia and in remote Aboriginal communities.

Western Australia Energy Minister, Bill Johnston, said, “Western Australia continues to lead the way in the green energy revolution, with Horizon Power becoming the first utility to prove the viability of SPS.

 “This installation strengthens communications resilience in the area, which is at particular risk during natural disasters.

 “The Esperance bushfires in 2015, which temporarily wiped out mobile phone coverage in the region, highlighted the need for a more robust and reliable power source.  

“I’m pleased that Telstra is working with Horizon Power to keep the Esperance community safe, and hope to see SPS implemented at remote towers across the state in the future.”

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