Australian Daily Electrical Power Generation Data – Monday 1st October 2018

Posted on Tue 10/02/2018 by


By Anton Lang ~


During the time we recently relocated home, I stopped doing these Posts, as I was offline for that time. It took a little longer than I expected it to take, and while I was thinking I could catch up on the Posts, the time I was away was just too long to catch up on, so I have decided to start it all over again from day one, so this will be the first Post in that Series. The information and the data will be in the same format as it was in the Earlier Posts…..TonyfromOz.


From this Post and for all future Posts, I have also added the graph and the data for the seven smaller sources of power generation other than the major sources for power generation.

This Post details the daily power consumption data for the AEMO coverage area in Australia. For the background information, refer to the Introductory Post at this link.

Each image is shown here at a smaller size to fit on the page alongside the data for that day. If you click on each image, it will open on a new page and at a larger size so you can better see the detail.

Note also the scale change for some of the images. That scale (the total power shown on the left hand axis) has been changed to show the graph at a larger size.

Monday 1st October 2018

Total Power Generation All Sources

Here, the black line across the top of the graph shows the total power generation from every source. This is also similar to the total power consumption, which is slightly lower after minor grid losses are taken into account.

The dark grey colour is for the black coal fired power generation. The yellowish colour is for the brown coal fired power generation. The purple colour is for natural gas fired power generation. The blue colour is for Hydro (water) power generation. The green colour is for wind power generation. The red colour in the dip between the two peaks is for solar power plant generation. Rooftop solar power is not included on this graph, as this shows just the power generation from all power plants only.

In the data below, both of those (exact) figures for total power consumption for the daily minimum and the daily Peak are taken directly from the AEMO site, adding up the totals for each of the five States in this coverage area. Also, note the slight difference between Total Consumed Power and Total Generated Power. That indicates some of the losses in the grid system

Daily Minimum Power Consumption – 17800MW (4AM)

Daily Peak Power Consumption – 23800MW (6.30PM)

Daily Minimum Generated Power – 18100MW

Daily Maximum Generated Power – 24100MW

Average Total Power Generation – 19900MW

Total Power Generation In GWH – 477.6GWH

All Fossil Fuels Total – Coal Fired and Natural Gas Fired Power Generation

Here, the upper black line is the total from all fossil fuels, and this is the same as the blue line in the image directly above.

The black line just under that top black line is the Sub Total just for coal fired power. Note here how closely that coal fired line follows the shape of the upper Load Curve, and this indicates that coal fired power can be ramped up and down to follow actual power consumption.

Daily Minimum Coal Fired – 14030MW

Daily Peak Coal Fired – 17250MW

Average Coal Fired Generation – 15150MW

Total Generated Power – 363.6GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 76.13%

Natural Gas Fired Power Generation

This image for Natural Gas Fired Power Generation shows the gap between the total for all Fossil Fuelled Sources of power generation and Coal Fired Power Generation in the image directly above.

Note here how closely the shape follows the total power generation Load Curve in the top image, indicating how these natural gas fired plants are used to smooth out the load curve to match actual power consumption.

Note also that while coal fired power provides the bulk of the power, these natural gas fired plants are used to add more power to the system during those time periods during the day when consumption rises for the morning peak, and the main evening Peak

Daily Minimum – 600MW

Daily Peak – 3200MW

Average Natural Gas Fired Generation – 1210MW

Total Generated Power – 29.04GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 6.08%

All Renewable Power Generation Versus Total Power Generation

This Image shows just the gap between total power generation from every source and the total power from renewable sources only. It is the same image as the first image at the top here, only with the fossil fuelled total (the grey, yellow and purple colours) removed from the graph, As in that top image, it shows Hydro Power, (blue colour) wind power, (green colour) and solar power. (red colour)  This image is used here to highlight the gap between the total power generation and the total from renewable sources alone.

All Renewable Power Generation (Does not include rooftop solar generation)

This image is the same as for the one directly above for all renewable power, only with the total from all sources removed from the graph. As the scale of the left hand vertical axis has now changed, you can better see the detail of all renewable power. Again, the blue colour is for hydro, the green colour is for wind, and the red colour is for solar. The other colours you can just make out indicates smaller plants, mostly using biofuels as their fuel source, tiny plants adding up to a very small total and for a short time duration. For this data, I have added the times for the daily minimum, and the daily maximum, to show how they do not correlate with the actual times of minimum power consumption (4AM) and maximum power consumption. (around 6/6.30PM)

Daily Minimum – 2600MW (12.10PM)

Daily Peak – 4800MW (7.30AM)

Average Renewable Generation – 3230MW

Total Generated Power – 77.52GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 16.23%

Generation From Other Sources

This image shows the power being generated from the seven smaller sources other than the major sources of power generation. These include Natural Gas/Diesel, Natural Gas/Fuel Oil, Coal Seam Methane, Diesel, Kerosene, Waste Coal Mine Gas, and Bagasse. All of these are fossil Fuels, excepting Bagasse which is sugar cane waste mostly used to provide main and auxilliary power at sugar mills.

Note the scale change here, as these are smaller producers of power, and the scale is changed so they can be more easily shown on the graph.

For the data here, I have just added the average generation across the day, the total generated power from all these sources, and the percentage of the total.

Average Generation – 310MW

Total Generated Power – 7.44GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 1.56%

Hydro Power Generation

This image shows all Hydro power generation. It is the same as the orange line in the top image for power generation from all sources.

Again, note here that the shape of this load curve follows the shape of the main load curve for all power generation, in that it has similar peaks in the morning and for the man evening Peak. The coloured lines at the bottom of this graph indicate the power generation from each of the hydro plants in this coverage area.

Daily Minimum – 880MW

Daily Peak – 2880MW

Average Hydro Generation – 1630MW

Total Generated Power – 39.12GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 8.19%

Wind Power Generation

This image shows the total power generated by every wind plant in this vast coverage area. It is the same as for the purple coloured line in the image at the top showing generation from all sources.

The total Nameplate for all these wind plants is 5301MW.

Note that the shape of this load curve does not follow the shape of the main load curve for total power generation. Wind power generates its power only when the wind is blowing, hence it does not follow actual power consumption levels.

For this data, I have added the times for the daily minimum, and the daily maximum, to show how they do not correlate with the actual times of minimum power consumption (4AM) and maximum power consumption. (around 6/6.30PM)

Daily Minimum – 330MW (3PM)

Daily Peak – 2310MW (7AM)

Average Wind Generation – 1330MW

Total Generated Power – 31.92GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 6.68%

Solar Power Plant Generation

This image shows the total power generated from all the solar power plants in this coverage area. This is the same as for the red coloured line you can just see in that top image.

The total Nameplate for all these 25 solar plants is 1594MW.

Daily Minimum – Zero

Daily Peak – 800MW (spikes to 860MW in cloudy conditions at most plants)

Average Solar Plant Generation for hours of generation – 530MW (6.00AM till 6.30PM)

Average Solar Plant Generation across the whole 24 hour day – 270MW

Total Generated Power – 6.48GWH

Average Percentage Of Total across the whole 24 hour day– 1.36%

Rooftop Solar Power Generation

As this source of power generation is classed as ‘behind the meter’, it is not included in the total power generation. Note here that the State of Queensland (QLD on the legend under the graph) is broken down into four separate areas as this is the largest State with the largest number of installations.

While the total Nameplate changes often, the latest information is that the total is now 7800MW, and that is a large total. However, that total equates to 1.8 Million homes with panels on their roof. That equates to an average sized installation of 4.3KW. Most of the power is consumed by the homes with the panels, and what is fed back to the grid, while seemingly still high is spread across that huge number of installations across the whole of this coverage area.

Daily Minimum – Zero

Daily Peak – 4050MW

Average For Hours of Generation – 2580MW (6.00AM till 6.30PM)

Average Rooftop Solar Generation across the whole 24 hour day – 1340MW

Total Generated Power – 32.16GWH

Average Percentage Of Total across the whole 24 hour day – 6.73%


  1. Finding Averages – On each graph there are 25 hourly time points, starting with midnight and finishing with midnight. I have added the total at each time point together, and divided by 25. For coal fired power, I do this on a State by State basis (for the 3 States with coal fired power) and then add the total for each State together.
  2. For both solar power averages, I have used the average for a (half) Sine Wave which is 0.637 of the Peak value.
  3. For total power in GWH, multiply the average daily power by 24, and then divide by 1000.
  4. The total percentages for coal fired power, natural gas fired power, all renewables, and those other smaller sources add up to 100%.
  5. The total percentages for Hydro, Wind, and Solar adds up to the total percentage for all Renewables.
  6. Total Generated Power is expressed here as GWH (GigaWattHours) and a GWH is a MWH (MegaWattHour) multiplied by 1000

Comments For This Day

Hmm! Don’t do this for a while and you get right out of practice. It got to the stage when I was doing this previously that it was taking me around two hours to complete the Post. So far today, I have spent almost five hours on this, gradually learning again the sequence I had down pat, finding the data, collating it all, getting all the maths calculations done, entering it all at the Post, and then doing the images, having now forgotten the sizing of those images, and then having to learn all that again as well. At least now I have it all back, and I know it will get easier as each day passes. Having been away from doing it now for almost seven weeks, some things have changed. Originally I actually thought I could catch it all up, but that would have actually taken more time, so I decided to just start all over again. Either way, it’s a daily process, so it will only be the averages after some weeks that will take a while to even out to what they were at previously.

As some things have changed, I have actually added things to this new Series of Posts. I noticed that some of the Nameplate totals had changed, with both wind and solar power, so that data has changed slightly. I have also added an extra graph, the power generation from other sources, and there are seven of those sources. They are small in total Nameplate, but added together, they add a small total to the overall, so it gives a more accurate set of data records to the daily totals.

As you can see, the average for coal fired power has fallen slightly from the 80% average it was running at when I had to stop doing the daily Posts. Even so, it’s still at 76%, only slightly lower, and that’s because we are now in those Months of benign temperatures, not the cold of Winter, and not the heat of Summer, so, overall power consumption is lower, and that is easily seen in that total for actual power consumption. Because that consumption is lower, then the operators of those coal fired plants are taking the time to do maintenance on their Units so they will be ready for the rise in power consumption in the coming Summer. To that end, there are ten of those Units off line, three each in Queensland and Victoria, and four Units off line in New South Wales. That has taken almost 7000MW of coal fired power out of the system, so thankfully that consumption is lower.

I have noticed that the average for hydro power is higher across the day, and most noticeable at that time of minimum power consumption, at that 4AM point in time.

The bottom fell out of wind power during the day, falling to a low of only 330MW, and that’s a Capacity Factor of only 6.2%. Even so the average for the day shows wind power at a Capacity Factor of just on 25%.

Also of note here is that both versions of solar power are now coming on line earlier and going off line a little later, so that time for generation is now twelve and a half hours, albeit starting from and ending at Zero. That average for the power generated from all the solar plants of 270MW for the full 24 hour period, (extrapolated out from those 12.5 hours of generation) give solar power a Capacity factor of only 17%, showing that solar power is only a niche source of power, and the smallest of contributors to the overall at only 1.36% of the total power required to actually keep the Country running.

I feel sure that as I get back into doing this daily task, I will find more to comment on, and I know the task will get easier as I continue on that daily basis.

Anton Lang uses the screen name of TonyfromOz, and he writes at this site, PA Pundits International on topics related to electrical power generation, from all sources, concentrating mainly on Renewable Power, and how the two most favoured methods of renewable power generation, Wind Power and all versions of Solar Power, fail comprehensively to deliver levels of power required to replace traditional power generation. His Bio is at this link.