Fast Frequency Service in the NEM – Treating the symptom not the cause?

Join the Electrical Branch, Electric Energy Society of Australia (EESA) Victorian Chapter and IEEE Power and Energy Society for this session to learn about some of the issues currently facing the Australian National Electricity Market.  

This seminar will raise questions regarding the Frequency Control Ancillary Services (FCAS) market structure and its influence on the deterioration in the frequency control of the power system with respect to regulation and in response to fast events.

There have been recent discussions in various public forums relating to the Australian National Electricity Market (NEM) about introducing a fast frequency ancillary service and/or an inertia service market additional to the existing 6-second, 60 second and 5 minute markets.

This presentation will demonstrate that good frequency response has been penalised under both the Causer Pays cost allocation regime for regulation service and the energy dispatch requirement for generators to ramp in a linear fashion between dispatch targets within the NEM.

The culmination of fifteen years of economic decisions combined with control system upgrades and compliance obligations have reduced the frequency response of the power system.

The lack of fast acting arresting energy represents a significant deviation from Good Electricity Industry Practice. As a consequence more services are required for dispatch than would otherwise be necessary if re-designed, costing consumers more and so failing to meet the National Electricity Objective.

Moreover, the real time market management of frequency services has downgraded the safety nets that were designed to avoid system collapse and may mean that existing system constraint limits are incorrectly calculated.

An appropriate reassessment of the market framework for frequency control within the NEM should be undertaken to address the significant loss of performance and power system control.


Kate Summers
Manager Electrical Engineering, Pacific Hydro

Kate holds a Bachelor Degree in Electrical Engineering (Hons) major in Power and Control Engineering from Swinburne University (Melbourne) and a Graduate Diploma Management.

After ten years working in transmission planning (dynamic modeling, power system control) and system operations in the Victorian and later the National Electricity Market Management Company (NEMMCO), she commenced work with the renewable energy company, Pacific Hydro.

Inconjunction she has served four years as the technical director for the Australian Wind Energy Association and a further five years as the the Chair of the Grid Directorate for the Clean Energy Council. Her work at Pacific Hydro covers a broad range from connection works for new projects, performance and compliance of operating assets including control and protection upgrades for the East Kimberley Power System.

Throughout the last tweleve years she has contributed significantly to the national debate on the technical standards and integration of renewable energy both into the market and physically into the NEM grid. She combines this a broad practical knowledge of the power system, synchronous generation, wind and solar power plants.

CPD Hours

This session is worth up to 1.5 Engineers Australia CPD Hours

Event Details

Event Status



Mon 1 May 2017 - 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm



Registration Closes

Mon 1 May 2017 - 5:30 pm


Engineers Australia Victoria
Level 31, 600 Bourke Street
Melbourne Victoria 3000



EA, EESA & IEEE Member Rate: $0.00 ($0.00 excl. GST)
Other Society Member Rate: $30.00 ($27.27 excl. GST)
Student Member Rate: $0.00 ($0.00 excl. GST)
Non-Member Rate: $30.00 ($27.27 excl. GST)


Electrical Branch, Electric Energy Society of Australia (EESA) Victorian Chapter and IEEE Power and Energy Society

Maximum CPD Hours

1.5 hour(s)

Event Contact

Engineers Australia Member Services
1300 653 113