Sustainability recognized at NECA awards

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority's National Education Centre for the Reef, Reef HQ Aquarium is not only an aquarium and research facility in Townsville Queensland, it is home to the world’s largest living coral reef exhibit. Stowe Australia won the Sustainability award for the Electrical Works at Reef HQ Aquarium – the category was Sustainability (Energy Efficiency and the Environment).


Digital Admin / 27 Aug 2021

Image credit Stowe Australia

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority's National Education Centre for the Reef, Reef HQ Aquarium is not only an aquarium and research facility in Townsville Queensland, it is home to the world’s largest living coral reef exhibit.

The electrical infrastructure at Reef HQ Aquarium was at the end of its reliable life and needed a critical upgrade to prepare for a major building refurbishment.

The following works were completed by Stowe Queensland on a live facility which remained open to the public for the majority of the project duration with the added complexity of ensuring that the facility was not without electricity for more than two hours at any one time.

The scope included:

  • HV Substation demolition of two 1500kVA Ground Mount Transformers and replacement with one 1000kVA Padmount Transformer
  • Building - main switch board replacement in a new plant room
  • Replacement of field distribution boards throughout the facility
  • New submains to field distribution boards and new corrosion proof cable containment systems
  • Site wide power monitoring and electrical control system SCADA using Schneider PSO and PME allowing for the remote operation of the Main Switch Board to increase safety during switching.
  • 115kWh Sodium Nickle Chloride (Salt Water) Battery System and 30kW Inverter System. New technology that has benefits of being totally recyclable and not containing heavy metals such as lithium and lead.
  • Upgrade of two 30 year old Diesel Generators to electronic speed governors and synchronised to provide more powerful and reliable backup generator power system
  • Additional Solar Power PV to increase system from 200KW to 260KW capacity
  • 3 x Micro Hydro Power Generator system and 4.5kW inverter system
  • Integration with Mechanical BMS and Ice Storage System for Energy Management and Peak Solar Optimisation

Images: © Stowe Queensland.

Reef HQ Aquarium and Stowe Australia

Reef HQ Aquarium, Stowe Australia and the installation of Hydro Generator