Tesla, Inc. launched the world’s largest energy storage battery capable of providing energy to 30 thousand homes within an hour. The successful commercial launch of a major project represents an important scaling signal for Tesla’s core product. The energy storage will help integrate the ever-increasing volumes of variable generation from wind and solar into the state’s grid and will provide peak power when needed, as reported by the latest technology news.
Tesla is a leader in electric vehicles, but the mainstay of the company’s business is the mass production of batteries. Taking the benefit of this advantage, Tesla is creating industrial energy storage solutions designed for emergency power supply and autonomous power systems from solar panels and wind turbines.
The batteries are based on the same technologies as the company’s cars: they are united by some details and design solutions. Samsung was the main contractor for the project. The project of the world’s largest lithium-ion battery has been named “Big Tesla Battery”, and its main purpose is to stabilize and support existing energy sources.
After Australia suffered a series of massive power outages in 2017, after which Elon Musk suggested that Australians build a giant battery for emergency supplies in less than 100 days. Then Australia was left without light after lightning struck a power line. Due to a major accident, several states were cut off from the national power grid for some time.
Such batteries are not designed for long-term power supply to cities, but they allow you to avoid a sharp drop in power and cascade outages of sections of the power grid. This is important since sometimes the disconnection of one power line during the peak demand period leads to the fact that others cannot cope with the load and begin to disconnect one after another, leaving millions of people without electricity. It took Tesla about 60 days to build. The battery is connected to the wind farm of the French energy company Neoen.
Thus, Tesla in record time built 100-megawatt energy storage, which is the most powerful in the world. The facility is connected to a wind farm and will also act as a buffer to reduce power fluctuations due to variable wind strength.
For Tesla, building drive-in Australia was an important showcase of the company’s capabilities. Today the demand for such storage facilities is rather high and will continue to increase as climate change increasingly causes power grid disruptions. Besides, the successful operation of a large accumulator in Australia will give impetus to a new market.
Tesla noted in a press release that the introduction of such energy storage would help eliminate power outages, reduce fluctuations and manage peak summer loads to ensure the reliability of South Australia’s electrical infrastructure.
Elon Musk’s progressive project from the first day attracted the attention of everyone interested in the development of clean energy. But the largest energy storage battery in the world turned out to be not only a good PR move but also a truly profitable investment that can fully pay off in a couple of years.
The battery in South Australia is just one of several similar projects that Tesla is involved in.
Smaller energy storage facilities are in operation in southern California, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Hawaii, and several Pacific islands to ensure a smooth and stable supply of electricity. Some luxury hotels located on islands and in hard-to-reach places also use small energy banks.
The company also said it was sending a large shipment of batteries to Puerto Rico, where the power system was destroyed by the hurricane.
The latest on technology news also says that e-commerce giant Amazon is also showing interest in energy storage technologies. The company has launched a pilot project to use batteries in its data centers.
Tesla says years of experience in developing lithium-ion batteries for cars have been useful when building bigger batteries for energy storage systems. The accumulators used in energy storage systems intended for power grids are not the same as in Tesla cars, but they have elements and design solutions in common with them.
Tesla previously partnered with Panasonic on a Powerpack battery project. However, Samsung was selected as a contractor for the South Australian operation, as Panasonic was unable to provide the required batteries in a severe time constraint.
Tesla will soon face stiff competition from major energy companies. Next year, a battery in South Korea will go into operation, which will be 50% larger than Tesla’s Australian battery. Chinese companies and many other renewable energy developers are also building energy storage facilities around the world. Therefore, all these actions bring Elon Musk closer to the ambitious goal of ridding the world of fossil fuels and using green energy.