Tesla's Powerwalls are starting to find their way into homes, and one of their main selling points is the way they can keep a home up and running during a blackout. Now the company has ambitious plans to extend that functionality to an entire Australian state by building the world's biggest battery storage system to keep homes powered come hell(ish summers) or high water.
In September last year, a massive storm ravaged South Australia, disrupting the state's electricity grid and leaving some 1.7 million people without power. Another storm caused more blackouts in December, while a heatwave knocked it out yet again in February this year. After that many ups and downs, in March the state government announced plans to "take charge of the state's energy future", and building a large battery storage system was a key part of that idea.
Now Tesla has been awarded the contract for this key component, which will use a scaled up version of the company's commercial Powerpack energy storage system. In fact, it'll be the largest lithium-ion battery storage facility in the world, boasting a capacity of 129 MWh and an output of up to 100 MW.
The Powerpack system will be hooked up to the Hornsdale Wind Farm under construction near Jamestown , storing energy for on-demand delivery to some 30,000 homes. The hopes are that the system will help alleviate power shortages and make the grid better able to handle on-peak demands.
Elon Musk himself bragged that the system would be up and running within 100 days or it's free, and Tesla is aiming to make good on that promise, setting the project's completion date for December.
Want a cleaner, faster loading and ad free reading experience?
Try New Atlas Plus. Learn more