Solar Design for Port Melbourne Residential Development

OVERVIEW:

Stamoulis Property Group was required to develop a sustainability management plan (SMP) for the construction of 128 units in the Port Phillip Council area, which mandated a minimum Environmentally Sustainable Design (ESD). To meet this requirement, NEN Consulting was engaged to design a solution that included 170kWp of solar panels and met the guidelines of the Victorian Government and Clean Energy Council (CEC). The goal was to recover the additional investment through grants and certificates offered by these organisations. 

NEN Consulting successfully designed a compliant system and prepared documentation for the construction of the site, meeting the ESD requirement while also ensuring a viable financial return for the property group.

Client

Stamoulis Property Group

Year Completed

 2022

Location

Port Melbourne, Victoria

UTILITIES CHALLENGE:

The solar panel installation project faced several utility challenges that required careful consideration and planning. One of the significant hurdles was working with architects and structural engineers to ensure the safe and secure installation of panels across various types of units being built. This required close collaboration and coordination to ensure that the panels were mounted in a way that was safe and efficient.

Another significant challenge was obtaining utility connection approvals from CitiPower, the local electricity distributor. It was crucial to determine whether an embedded network would be required for the solar connections and comply with all the relevant regulations and standards.

The project also aimed to obtain the maximum number of rebates possible for the size of the installation. This required detailed knowledge of the relevant government incentives and schemes, including Clean Energy Council (CEC) accreditation and the Victorian Government’s Solar Homes Program. 

SEAMLESS SOLUTION:

NEN Consulting engaged in extensive discussions with the utility company, reviewing technical specifications and documentation, and ensuring that all the necessary approvals were obtained before proceeding with the installation on behalf of the client.

NEN Consulting was able to obtain connection approval from DNSP, ensuring that the solar panels could be connected safely and legally to the grid. 

Additionally, NEN Consulting provided compliant CEC design documentation that met the Functional Schematic, Single Line, Inverter Arrangements, Typical PV Mounting, and Key Calculations requirements. 

The selection of equipment was based on a detailed comparison between retailer offerings and rebates available to each, resulting in a fully CEC-compliant design capable of claiming rebates offered by the CEC. 

The rebate breakdown with a bill of materials provided total cost estimates, showing a potential discount of approximately 36% due to solar credits. 

 

A shading study, yield estimates, and 3D model of the site were also provided to assist with the visualisation of panels and decision-making regarding their placement. Finally, IFC documents for the construction team were prepared, based on design recommendations, including site maintenance and commissioning guides, earth fault alarm actions, shutdown, and isolation procedures. 

NEN was able to use deep industry and specialist expertise to design a compliant system enabling a strong financial return for the property group.

MULTIDISCIPLINARY APPROACH:

Our work for this client included:

  • Energy market assessment 
  • Engineering and design documentation
  • 3D modelling and construction design
  • Options analysis for retailer offerings and rebates
  • Detailed economic tariff and cost analysis
  • Shading study
  • Yield estimates

Our Projects