DCH10: Increasing the value of onsite renewables in Darwin through data driven analytics

Data Clearing House

About the project

Charles Darwin University is working with the CSIRO-led Darwin Living Lab and the City of Darwin to undertake data driven analysis of three existing commercial buildings in Darwin. The analysis will inform the identification of opportunities to increase the value of onsite renewables through demand management and more efficient building operations. Darwin has energy intensive buildings due mostly to the cooling demand in the wet/dry tropical climate. The outcomes from this project will highlight opportunities in existing building stock that can accelerate the uptake of renewables and reduce energy consumption.

Project titleIncreasing the value of onsite renewables in Darwin through data driven analytics
Project numberDCH10
Project locationDarwin
Lead partnerCharles Darwin University
Project partnersCSIRO, City of Darwin
Project participants
Start date20/12/2021
End date20/06/2022
ARENA/i-Hub funding$27,292
Total project cost$112,850


Darwin has high building consumption due to the cooling demand needed to maintain thermal comfort, particularly during the build-up to the wet season. Climate change is projected to exacerbate this challenge. Onsite renewable energy in combination with efficient building operation informed by smart building analytics offers the opportunity to achieve net zero emissions buildings, which has been demonstrated globally. The Northern Territory (NT) government has committed to an ambitious target of 50% renewables by 2030. This project will address a key barrier for renewables uptake by modelling opportunities for exemplar buildings in Darwin that can inform both policy and practice.


CDU will work with project partners (CSIRO and City of Darwin) to onboard three selected buildings to the Data Clearing House (DCH) to provide real time data about consumption and generation. Existing tools in DCH will be utilised to carry out data driven analysis for improving self-consumption from renewables. Energy simulations of the two CDU buildings considered in this study will be undertaken. The data analysis will identify two high impact data driven energy management and demand management opportunities for three buildings in Darwin region, while helping to inform strategies for net zero energy buildings.


  • Identify energy efficiency, demand management opportunities in Darwin commercial buildings for improving the value of onsite renewables through use of near real time data and micro services available in DCH
  • Document the onboarding process associated with connecting three buildings in Darwin to DCH and develop a methodology to support upgrading of buildings in the region capable of handling digital technologies
  • A knowledge sharing workshop will be organised, supported by ongoing dissemination through the Darwin Living Lab, to support upgrading of existing buildings to smart buildings that can move towards net zero emissions.

Additional impact

The project outputs will play a key role in advancing the awareness of use of smart building technologies and identify opportunities for uptake of onsite renewables in tropical, northern Australia. The learning and digital capacity built will directly assist new commercial buildings being delivered as part of the Darwin City Deal.

Project Reports

DCH10 Report on Onboarding process (CDU)
DCH10 K nowledge sharing report – Energy use reduction, improving value of onsite generation (CDU/DLL)
DCH10 Lessons learnt report
DCH10 Sub – project knowledge sharing report

Evaluation Framework

All sub-projects within i-Hub are evaluated as part of the ongoing i-Hub project management process. Evaluation is completed by the project manager and reviewed by the Activity Leaders Group and i-Hub Steering Committee. Please click here to read the Evaluation Framework.

Created 22/02/22