Demand Management Innovation Allowance (DMIA) Research and trials

Ausgrid explores new and innovative ways to deliver more efficient demand management solutions to reduce costs for customers and reduce peak demand for deferral of investment. These trials form part of our demand management innovation allowance (DMIA) program, which is a fund developed by the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) to enable electricity distributors like Ausgrid to conduct research and development projects in areas of innovation for trialling new technologies and strategies for managing peak demand. 

There are a wide range of demand management solutions we may use as part of our demand management innovation trials. Some of these options include: Shifting appliance or equipment use from peak to non-peak periods; converting the appliance energy source from electricity to alternative; operation of embedded generators; and power factor correction

For more information about innovation research and trials for energy networks across Australia refer to the Energy Networks Association website here.

Latest research reports

As part of Ausgrid’s efforts to reduce costs for customers, we continue to explore new and innovative ways to reduce peak demand for deferral of investment as part of our demand management innovation program. Some of the trials by Ausgrid since 2013 were as follows:

Report (click to download report) Summary Report date
Business Customer Solar and Battery Survey Report This report provides insights from our survey of 600 Ausgrid business customers, examining their motivations to invest in solar and energy efficiency technologies, their experience and satisfaction. The survey also covers the opinions and attitudes of non-solar business customers about their consideration of investing in solar and energy efficiency into the future. February 2018
Household Solar and Battery Survey Interim Report Interim report presenting results from a survey of Ausgrid residential customers about solar and battery systems. The research will enable us to better understand the likely uptake of household solar and battery systems for consideration in the development of demand management options and deferral of network investment.    March 2017
CoolSaver Air Conditioning Trial Interim Report 
Interim report on Ausgrid CoolSaver, covering 2015/16 summer period and new winter trial during 2016. This initiative continues to investigate efficient management of power consumption of air conditioners during peak hot and winter days.
February 2017
CBD Embedded Generation Project Interim Report Interim results of the CBD Generation Project which is trialling a new connection arrangement for a
1.3 MW embedded generator in Sydney's CBD.
November 2016
Hot Water Load Control Trials Analysis Report

Summarised results of three separate hot water load control demand management innovation projects.

August 2016
Newington Grid Battery Trial
Report 2016
Ausgrid test-drove a grid-connected battery. Find out about the trial outcomes. April 2016
CoolSaver Survey Results April 2016 Survey results based on customers who are participating in the Ausgrid CoolSaver trials in the Central Coast, Lake Macquarie and Maitland areas Apr 2016
CoolSaver Air Conditioning Trial Interim Report Interim report on Ausgrid CoolSaver which is an initiative that more efficiently manages the power consumption of air conditioners on hot days Sep 2015
CoolSaver Air Conditioning survey Central Coast and Lake Macquarie Ausgrid survey to CoolSaver participants to give them an opportunity to provide feedback on our trial and their experiences Apr 2015  

Historical research and reports

The below historical reports identified demand management innovation opportunities to defer network investment through demand side management.  

(click to download report)


Report date

Sydney Inner Metro Investigation report

Investigation by Ausgrid and Transgrid into the demand management requirements and opportunities in the Sydney inner metropolitan region

Nov 2009

Demand Management and Planning Project final report

A combined summary of the Demand Management and Planning Project (DMPP)

Jun 2008

Big Demand, Big Opportunity. A report on the investigations at sites with demand greater than 5MVA

A high-level summary of opportunities identified at sites examined by the DMPP with peak demand greater than 5MVA


The Right Approach - Load Shifting Trial

Report by NSW Department of Planning
on a trial use of load shifting and standby generators for DM by 13 trial participants

Apr 2008

Performance Report of Dual Indirect Cooling Energy Recovery Plant installed at University of Technology Sydney

Results of preliminary tests

Apr 2008

Standby Generation for Demand Management Roll Up Report

A summary by Sinclair Knight Merz
of the total demand reduction potential and cost through use of standby generators in the Inner Metro area 

Apr 2008

Demand Management and Planning Project Partial Load Standby Potential

Report on capital costs and works required to convert three standby generators from break-before-make to SCTT connection

Apr 2008

Air Quality Impact Assessment: The Generators Project

Assessment by Holmes Air Sciences
 of likely air quality impacts of using 40MW of standby generators in the Sydney CBD

Mar 2008

Identification and Investigation of Peak Demand Reduction Opportunities Sydney Non-CBD Areas

A summary of the type and quantum of peak demand reduction potential at 561 sites studied by the DMPP

Sep 2007

Customer Survey Feedback from DMPP Investigations

Institute for Sustainable Futures – University of Technology Sydney survey of participants in the DMPP site demand management audits

Jan 2007

Identification & Investigation of Peak Demand Reduction Opportunities Sydney CBD Area

Review of opportunities identified by site audits of Sydney CBD sites

 Dec 2006

Demand Management and Planning Project Preliminary Feasibility Study

Econnect report into technical constraints to use of standby generators in the Sydney CBD and budget costs to rectify

Dec 2006

Validation of Demand Management Investigations St George and Sutherland Areas

A review of the total amount, and cost, of opportunities identified by Level 1 Investigations in the St George and Sutherland areas using Level 2 Investigations 

Sep 2006

Load Shifting Opportunities Investigation Final Report

An investigation by Orbis Environmental
of load shifting opportunities at 12 largely manufacturing sites in the St George area

Apr 2006

Innovative HVAC Program Report

A summary of seven innovative HVAC technologies investigated and in some cases funded by NSW Department of Planning

Jan 2006

Mixed Use High Rise Preliminary Feasibility Study Grid Connection of Diesel Generator

Investigation of options and costs for connection of a diesel standby generation in a manner that permits grid parallel operation for dispatch demand reduction

Oct 2005

Standby Generation Program Preliminary Feasibility Study

Examination of options for connection of standby generators for use for network support at four hospitals and two other government organisations

 Jun 2005

 Power Factor Correction

Assessment of the potential to reduce electricity demand in the inner Metropolitan Sydney Region

Mar 2004

Demand Management Activities applicable to Electricity Networks

A survey by Energy Futures Australia of a sample of worldwide demand management activities 

Feb 2004

Cool savings achieved with innovative thermal storage system

NSW Department of Planning case study for an innovative thermal storage HVAC system

Sydney Water Energy Savings not just a drop in the ocean

Investigation on load shifting of a pumping process at Sydney Water’s North Head Sewage Treatment Plant