Millmerran station trip drives prices sky high


At the end of an otherwise “normal” Saturday in the NEM, both units at the Millmerran station tripped offline this evening causing prices to spike upwards sharply – as shown in this snapshot from ez2viewAustralia at 22:15 NEM dispatch time:

2013-03-09-at-22-15-ez2view-withQLDview-andMillmerranTrip

We see the price spikes from around $62/MWh (a new low price, taking carbon pricing into account) to $11,499.99/MWh as a result of the trip at Millmerran (with metered generation from 22:10).

The red colour coding of Millmerran clearly shows the change, in the trended Capacity Factor chart.

As would be expected, generators around Queensland (and more broadly) scrambled to make up for the 850MW lost when Millmerran tripped offline.

The second snapshot (from 22:45) shows how the output of numerous other stations across Queensland has changed as a result – whilst prices still oscillate above the low levels experienced prior to the trip:

2013-03-09-at-22-45-ez2view-withQLDview-recovering

As shown above, there’s no sign (yet) that Millmerran has started to return to service.

At 23:05, AEMO issued Market Notice 41808 that advised that:

“At 2207 hrs the Millmerran power station No.1 generator (388 MW) and the No.2 generator (424 MW) tripped simultaneously.

AEMO has not been advised of any disconnection of bulk electrical load.  The cause of this non credible contingency event is not known at this stage. “

About the Author

Paul McArdle
One of three founders of Global-Roam back in 2000, Paul has been CEO of the company since that time. As an author on WattClarity, Paul's focus has been to help make the electricity market more understandable.

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