Alpha-ESS Opens New SA Battery Assembly Facility, Partners On VPP

Alpha-ESS solar batteries

Solar battery manufacturer Alpha-ESS is pumping up production at a new assembly plant in Adelaide’s south and also partnering in a new virtual power plant (VPP).

The new facility is in Lonsdale, which is primarily an industrial suburb situated approximately 26 kilometres south of Adelaide’s CBD.

A South Australian Government release states Alpha-ESS is planning to boost production of its battery systems to around 500 units per month for the remainder of 2019, with view to pushing that up to 1,000 systems per month next year.

Alpha ESS was the second company to commit to manufacturing in South Australia under the SA Government’s Home Battery Scheme. It initially assembled systems locally in partnership with Minda Commercial Enterprises, a disability support organisation.

Since commencing assembly in Australia, apparently more than 5,000 Alpha-ESS systems have been installed; but the release doesn’t clarify whether that’s locally or globally – most likely the latter.

Alpha-ESS ShineHub/Powershop VPP Deal

All battery systems supported under South Australia’s Home Battery scheme are required to be virtual power plant (VPP) capable. A virtual power plant enables many separate battery systems to act as one, under the control of a VPP operator. You can learn more about virtual power plants here.

Alpha-ESS batteries will form part of a new VPP recently launched by ShineHub and retail partner Powershop. ShineHub is offering an extra $1,000 discount on Alpha ESS batteries in addition to the SA Government subsidy.

Under the Home Battery Scheme, the maximum subsidy is $6,000 and is calculated based on storage capacity – $600 per kilowatt-hour for energy concession holders and $500 per kilowatt-hour for all other households.

If you’re interested in one of these battery systems, check out Ronald’s Alpha ESS battery review from last year. Alpha ESS batteries are also listed on the SolarQuotes solar battery comparison table.

Further information on the ShineHub VPP offer can be found here. As with any deal of this nature, read all the small print, closely examine claims of benefits and ask lots of questions before signing on the dotted line to ensure the arrangement will be a good fit for your situation.

In other recent related news, Tesla announced early this month it had knocked $2,200 off the price of Powerwall 2 for South Australians participating in its VPP.

Launched in October last year, South Australia’s Home Battery Scheme has a goal of supporting 40,000 solar battery installations. Up to late July, 2,300 subsidies had been approved.

(Added January 16, 2020: Check out our new VPP comparison table)

About Michael Bloch

Michael caught the solar power bug after purchasing components to cobble together a small off-grid PV system in 2008. He's been reporting on Australian and international solar energy news ever since.


  1. You review link is for a different, or older version of this battery?

    Shinehub are offering the Alpha ESS as 9.3kw usable? (So the subisdy is based on 9.3kw).

    • Ronald Brakels says

      Hi D

      This article is over 6 months old, so you’ll need to check what they are offering now. If you are in South Australia the home battery subsidy is $4,650 for a 9.3 kilowatt-hour battery but tomorrow, the 14th of April, is the last day that’s available before it’s cut by one-third. (You only have to buy the battery to get the full subsidy, it doesn’t have to be installed.)

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