Tesla Megapack | Massive Energy Storage | Large Scale Renewable Storage

The Tesla Megapack has been announced by Tesla today. The Megapack is designed for utilities and large-scale commercial customers and could be a real game changer for those in remote areas or looking for large amounts of portable renewable storage. Let’s learn more!

Tesla Megapack | Utility Scale Energy Storage

Tesla Megapack (source: Tesla.com)
Tesla Megapack (source: Tesla.com)

Tesla announced the Megapack today – as a potential replacement for “peaker” power plants, which help the grid when it’s overloaded. Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) will deploy several Megapacks at Moss Landing on Monterrey Bay in California. There are also three other locations PG&E are looking at optimising.

The Tesla Powerpack, released in 2015, is Tesla’s current offering for large scale energy storage – the array in South Australia has a capacity of 129 MWh and can deliver 100 MW of power.

The Megapacks are substantially more powerful – each Megapack can store up to 3 megawatt hours (MWh) of energy at a time, and it’s possible to string enough Megapacks together to create a battery with more than 1 GWh of energy storage, according to the press release.

This gives the product comes with some serious grunt: “A 1 Gigawatt hour (GWh) project provides record energy capacity—enough to power every home in San Francisco for 6 hours.”

“Every Megapack arrives pre-assembled and pre-tested in one enclosure from our Gigafactory—including battery modules, bi-directional inverters, a thermal management system, an AC main breaker and controls. No assembly is required, all you need to do is connect Megapack’s AC output to your site wiring.”

According to The Verge, Tesla has been deploying record numbers of Powerwalls and Powerpacks in 2019 – which has created issues with battery shortage, undoubtedly a pain for anyone wanting to order the Powerwall 2 in Australia, for example: 

“Tesla deployed 415 MWh worth of Powerwalls and Powerpacks in the second quarter of 2019, a record for the company. Throughout 2018 and into early 2019, the company had to scale back the number of Powerwall and Powerpack products it deployed because it needed the batteries to support the dramatic increase in Model 3 production.”

Is it going to be easier to wait for the Powerwall 3? Watch this space. 

Megapack Specifications

Tesla Powerpack Rendition (source: Tesla.com)
Tesla Megapack Rendition (source: Tesla.com)
  • Microgrid – you can build a localized grid which is able to disconnect from the main power grid. Sound 
  • Renewable Smoothing – ‘Smooth out the intermittency of renewables by storing and dispatching when needed’
  • T&D (Transmission and Distribution) Investment Deferral – ‘Postpone costly grid infrastructure upgrades by supplying power at a distributed location to defer the need to upgrade ageing infrastructure’. (Learn more about T&D savings with energy batteries by clicking here)
  • Voltage Support – the Megapack can add voltage or remove it to help maintain the grid.
  • Frequency Regulation – The Megapack can rapidly change charge or discharge energy in response to changes in grid frequency.

How to buy Tesla Megapack in Australia

According to the Tesla website, the next step is to fill in an enquiry form on their site, after which “…our team of experts will work with you to identify custom site needs, and design a solution to maximize project values across multiple applications.”

If you’re interested in buying a Tesla Megapack please use the enquiry form on the Tesla website or click here

If you’d like more information on the Tesla Megapack in Australia, we have set up a mailing list which will keep you updated if you’re interested in large scale commercial solar / renewable storage like this one. Just fill in the box below and we’ll keep you posted.

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Tesla Powerwall 3 in 2019: Release Date, Specifications, Cost.

Tesla Powerwall 3 Release Date, Specs, Cost, and Rumors.

With the great success of the Tesla Powerwall 2, people are already talking about its successor. Although the Powerwall 2 is a fantastic device and can help many households save a lot of money on their power bill, it’s far from a ‘no brainer’ at this point – you need to crunch the numbers to ensure it’s going to be worthwhile to install in your house. But with the cost of lithium-ion dropping rapidly and Tesla competitors chomping at the bit with innovative solutions to battery storage, we’ve no doubt that there’s plenty of work being done on the Tesla Powerwall 3. Could this be the device that finally makes PV solar + storage a standard for homes? Tesla CEO Elon Musk has said that they “expect to sell more Powerwalls than cars” so it’s a major part of their business. What features will the Powerwall 3 have? What will it cost and when can we expect it? Read on for more…

Tesla Powerwall 3 Release Date
Tesla Powerwall 3 – What can we expect?

Tesla Powerwall 3 Release Date

At this point we aren’t sure exactly when the Powerwall 3 is coming out, but let’s look at the time difference between the Powerwall and the Powerwall 2 and see if that gives us any clues:

Powerwall 1: Development commenced in 2012. Announced in 2015 with a pilot demonstration 0f 500 units built and installed. Production moved from Tesla Fremont to Gigafactory 1. Initially came in two models – 10kWh nickel-cobalt-aluminium cathode for backup and 7kWh for daily cycle application. Work on the 10kWh battery was discontinued and they focused on the 7kWh model and brought it to Australia in 2015, with a ten year limited warranty. 

Powerwall 2: Development commencement unknown. Announced in October 2016 at Universal Studios. Production of 2170 cylindrical lithium-ion batteries for the Powerwall 2, Powerpack 2 and Model 3 EVs starts in January, 2017.  First Australian installations early June, 2017. 

Powerwall 3: Potential 2019 announcement. Potential 2020 announcement? 

Tesla Powerwalls in 2019

Tesla’s 129MWh South Australian Battery Farm
According to GTM, in Q4 2017 they deployed 143 MWh of energy storage products, which represented a 45 percent from the same quarter YOY (year-on-year). The 129 MWh of energy storage  the Tesla Battery in South Australia partnership last year will be represented in their figures for Q1 2018.

“Solar [megawatts] deployed declined as volumes continue to be impacted by our decision to close certain sales channels earlier this year and to focus on projects with better margins,” Tesla stated. “In addition, solar deployments were affected by the short supply of Powerwalls for customers who wanted solar plus Powerwall in their house. While volumes may continue to be impacted by these factors over the near term, we expect growth to resume later this year.”

So they were about to build the South Australian battery farm within the 100 days they promised, Tesla had Samsung supply the batteries instead of manufacturing them at their Gigafactory. So it looks like they have a way to go with regards to scaling up their manufacturing processes before we start to even think about seeing a Powerwall 3. 

In America, they’ve released new pricing (thanks to CleanTechnica for the stats): 

Effective October 12th, 2018, the new pricing for three energy products is as follows (in USD):

  • Powerwall: $6,700 (originally $5,900)
  • Gateway: $1,100 (originally $700)
  • Installation: $1,000–3,000 (depending on complexity)

“The Tesla Powerwall is a genuinely good option for consumers considering energy storage, and that quality is part of the reason why so many consumers are asking solar installers for it,” Nick Liberati, communication manager for EnergySage, a solar energy system price comparison site operating in over 30 states, tells Inverse. “However, it’s Tesla’s overall brand recognition and luxury appeal that really sets the Powerwall apart from other battery competitors.”

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Tesla Powerwall 3 Specifications and Features

 

Tesla Powerwall 1 Specs

Dimensions 1302mm long, 862mm wide, 183cm diameter (51.3″ x 34″ x 7.2″)
Battery 7kWh battery (6.4kWh ‘Usable Capacity’)
Power 7kW peak power, 5kW continuous power.
Scalability up to 10 Powerwalls
Weight 97kg (214 pounds)
Cooling Liquid Cooling (liquid thermal control)
Efficiency 92.5% round-trip DC efficiency (at optimal conditions – 25 degrees celcius (77 Fahrenheit) with 2kW charge/discharge power)
Tesla Powerwall 1 Specifications and Cost
Tesla Powerwall 1 Specifications and Cost
  • Wall or floor mountable, indoor or outdoor.
  • 100% Depth of Discharge
  • 10 year unlimited cycle warranty

 

 

 

 

 

Tesla Powerwall 2 Specs

Dimensions 1150mm long, 755mm wide, 155mm diameter. (45″ x 30″ x 6″)
Battery 14kWh battery (13.5kWh ‘Usable Capacity’)
Power 7kW peak power, 5kW continuous power.
Scalability up to 10 AC-coupled Powerwall 2’s
Weight Weighs 119.9kg (264.4 pounds)
Cooling Liquid Cooling
Efficiency >90% round trip efficiency.
Tesla Powerwall 2 Specifications and Cost
Tesla Powerwall 2 Specifications and Cost
  • Wall or floor mountable, indoor or outdoor.
  • 10 year manufacturer’s warranty
  • Integrated Inverter (converts the DC energy into AC energy you need to use in your house)
  • Control and view your energy usage/storage with the Tesla app (iOS and Android)
  • Degradation – it will hold around 70% of the 13.5kWh after 10 years.
  • Wi-Fi, Ethernet, 3G connectivity.
  • Off-grid support (AC Coupled)
  • Single Phase feed in.
  • 100% depth of discharge available.
  • Outside of the USA: Powerwall 2 doesn’t include inverter with the DC version and only works with a Solar Edge inverter.

Tesla Powerwall 3 Specs

This is all conjecture at this point, but we think some of the features the Tesla Powerwall 3 could include:

Tesla Powerwall 3 Specifications and Cost
Tesla Powerwall 3 Specifications and Cost
  • Heavily optimised for and integrated with Tesla Solar Roof (Aussies can preorder one now, will be available in 2018)
  • Heavily optimised and integrated with Tesla Electric Car (Model S, Model 3 etc.). 
  • Upgraded intelligent energy management – will learn your household’s usage, draw from weather forecasts etc. to ensure your house, battery, car or hot water stay at 100% and you are only feeding back into the grid when it’s optimal.
  • Inbuilt hybrid inverter (i.e. you can plug solar panels directly into it, eliminating the need for a separate inverter for your solar panels. The current inverter is just a battery inverter)
  • 28kWh battery (~26kWh usable capacity)
  • We predict they’ll stick with lithium-ion for the battery as its price is very affordable.
  • Alternatively, Tesla may stick with the 14kWh batteries, make them smaller and easier to install – 14kWh is sufficient power for many households – it depends on the cost/size of the batteries)
  • Single and three phase power compatible. 
  • DC version includes inbuilt inverter.
  • By 2019 Tesla expect their Gigafactory to manufacture 35 gigawatt-hours per year of battery cells. Almost as much as the current global combined battery production capacity. What will this mean for the Powerwall III?
  • What features do you think the Powerwall 3 will have? What would make it a ‘no-brainer’ for you to purchase?  Let us know in the comments.

Tesla Powerwall 3 Price

The cost of the Powerwall 1 and the Powerwall 2 was roughly the same, so we don’t expect the price of the Powerwall 3 to fluctuate more than around 20%. 

Powerwall 1 Price (Australian Installation): Around $10,000 (7kWh battery, installation and supporting hardware included).

Powerwall 2 Price (Australian Installation): Around $12,000 -15,000 (14kWh battery, installation and supporting hardware included).

March 2019 – Prices for the Powerwall 2 and installation cost have increased between $1,000 – $2,500 due to industry changes. These have been factored into the price above. 

Powerwall 3 Price: (Australian Installation): We estimate it will cost around $15,000 – $20,000 installed. Call it a hunch.

Powerwall Installers in Australia

There are quite a few companies ready to install the Powerwall 2 in Australia – here are some:

Powerwall Alternatives

If you’re not necessarily sold on the Powerwall 2 and don’t want to wait for the Powerwall 3, there are many Powerwall competitors and alternatives you can investigate, such as sonnenBYD B-Box Solar BatteryRedback Technologies, Fronius, Mercedes-Benz, and Eaton Nissan xStorage

Want more alternatives to the Powerwall? Our Solar Battery Comparison area will help – if you have any questions or would like some guidance please email us or simply ask in the questions below! While the Powerwall is certainly an amazing product, depending on your personal circumstances you can get a better result by using one of its competitors. The sonnenBatterie, for example, is onto its 8th iteration and powers 75% of German energy storage – it has a modular capacity from 2-16kWh and, amongst others, is definitely worth a look. 

2019 Update: sonnen have been bought out by Shell so we expect big things from them in the future. If you’re not in a rush and are interested in future technology like the Powerwall 3, keep an eye on our site and we’ll have updates on what’s going on in the constantly changing world of battery storage.  We’re working hard on a solar battery comparison guide as well and hope to have it to you very soon. 

Dan Petit on CanadianCor.com has an interesting idea about how he’d like the next gen units to work:

An entire integrated package rated at 20 kW after 10 years including Gateway, a basic “next-to-garage-breaker-panel” installation cost included, and standard panels (of 5 or 6 kW) as an entire highly competitive total cost should be a very doable thing. A free pack renewal at ten or so years for pre-orders would be the superclincher!!

Agreed that it would be nice, and doable, but a ‘highly competitive total cost’ doesn’t really scream Tesla, unfortunately. There are better options if budget is your biggest motivator when installing energy storage.

 

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Tesla in Australia 2018/2019 – Facts & Figures

Tesla have announced their Q2 earnings which notes that they have a ‘crazy’ growth outlook despite cell shortage and a slow deployment of their solar roof. Tesla in Australia is still very far behind the USA, but what can we expect the future to bring?

Tesla in Australia – 2018/19

What can Australians expect from Tesla over the next financial year? We’ve had an agonisingly slow rollout down under and there are many people waiting to see how long it takes for the solar roof to make its way out here.

With the cell shortage that has crippled availability of the Tesla Powerwall 2 in Australia, is it worth waiting for the Powerwall 3 instead? There hasn’t been any announcement yet so it really depends on your personal situation. 

The Tesla Gigafactory in Buffalo, New York is in working on speeding up production of the Solar Roof. They hope to produce 1 GW of solar products at the site annually beginning in 2019, and Tesla has said that it could even reach 2 GW/year down the track. The Gigafactory produces standard solar panels, along with the Solar Roof.

So if you have a bit of patience and are happy to wait until 2019, it’s fine to wait. Solar batteries still have a bit of a ways to go before they are a no-brainer for people to install, let alone the solar roof. But in the meantime, there are certainly solar roof alternatives like the Tractile solar roof tile or the Sonnen/Bristile partnership which they’ve called ‘Solartile‘. Have you got any questions or any experience with any of these solar shingles? Please let us know in the comments. 

Where is the Tesla Solar Roof?

Tesla in Australia - Solar Roof via @Toblerhaus on Twitter
Tesla in Australia – Tesla Solar Roof 2018 Installation (California) (source: @Toblerhaus on Twitter)

We’ve written about the Tesla Solar Roof before – and we’ve also written about its place in the Australian ecosystem, given that they’re rare as hen’s teeth in America, let alone over here. According to PV Magazine USA, it’s probable that the Tesla Solar Roof will not help their bottom line (Energy Generation and Division Revenues) until halfway through 2019 at the earliest. The reasons for this are for safety and the time lag it’s taking to get all their ducks in a row.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk clarified:

“It takes a while to confirm that the Solar Roof is going to last for 30 years and all the details work out, and we’re working with first responders to make sure it’s safe in the event of a fire and that kind of thing. So it’s quite a long validation program for a roof which has got to last for 30, 40, 50 years, but we also expect to ramp that up next year at our Gigafactory 2 in Buffalo. That’s going to be super exciting.”

According to Musk ‘several hundred’ Solar Roofs have been deployed, are being installed or scheduled for install, and international expansion (i.e. Australia!) is slowly rolling out.

PV Magazine have also written about some of the first solar roof installations in the USA – please click here to read some more about them.

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Is There A Solar Battery Rebate In Australia?

We’ve heard whispers of a solar battery rebate doing the rounds. Is Australia about to see its own energy storage subsidy, and, if so, how would the potential rollout of that be implemented?

Solar Battery Rebate in 2018

Solar Battery Rebate in Australia - Tesla Powerwall
Solar Battery Rebate in Australia – Will it include the Tesla Powerwall 2?

We’ve written about solar battery growth before – the sector has seen a sharp rise in 2017 which has continued into 2018. Will the government consider incentivising households and businesses to install energy storage, helping add stability to the grid, lower skyrocketing electricity costs and assist Australia in reaching our Renewable Energy Target? Time will tell. States like Queensland already have the Affordable Energy Program where 5,000 Queenslanders will see an interest-free loan for solar systems/battery storage, so a scheme just for storage doesn’t seem out of the question.

Whilst nothing official has been announced yet, there are plenty of whispers about the government playing with solar power rebates – feed-in-tariffs are dropping sharply. Will we see discounted deals on solar batteries? As they’re not currently at the point where ROI (Return On Investment) is ubiquitously positive, energy storage uptake in Australia is still finding its feet. If the government gives it a boost how much will that cost and what kind of value do we put on the financial/social impact of embracing renewable energy?

In the United States, The federal solar tax credit, also known as the investment tax credit (ITC), allows you to deduct 30% of the cost of installing a solar energy system from your taxes. The ITC applies to residential and commercial systems, and there is no cap on how much you can spend. Should Australia try something like this, or is our current system more effective?

Solar Rebates/Subsidies In 2018 

Here are some of the various offers federal/state government are using to try and get people to embrace solar. Any questions about a specific scheme? Please leave a comment below and we’d be happy to look into your query.

In terms of batteries, we don’t have a specific incentive to install it, either as an add-on to existing solar system or as part of a new system.The Battery Energy Storage System incentive provides eligible South East Queensland households with a one-off $50 payment for registering eligible systems on the Queensland Government battery storage database.

Please note that information about rebates and subsidies can go out of date quite quickly so ensure you double check before purchasing – you can learn more about current available solar rebates in Australia by visiting the “Your Energy Savings” website, which has been set up by the federal government – simply click here to visit

Interested in learning more about solar batteries available in Australia? Click to learn more about Tesla Powerwall competitors and alternatives.

In the meantime, we’re still waiting to see what sort of battery rebate may be offered. Since Australia already has a very strong solar panel presence, it makes sense to work on maximising storage as well as generation.

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Blockchain – Power Ledger in Puerto Rico?

Blockchain tech provider Power Ledger in Puerto Rico – the Australian company are looking to help the struggling Caribbean island with its ongoing energy woes by implementing their technology into microgrid resources.

Power Ledger in Puerto Rico

Power Ledger in Puerto Rico
Power Ledger in Puerto Rico (source: wikipedia.org)

We posted about Tesla’s input last October when they had a look at a microgrid in Puerto Rico – apart from the initial six, we haven’t seen many more of the Tesla Powerpacks installed – although hundreds of Powerwalls were also sent to help. Since PREPA (Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority) has a $9 billion USD in debt to Wall Street it’s a difficult situation for PR.

According to Bloomberg, Power Ledger have hired Dante Disparte, a Puerto Rican grid resiliency and security expert who is also CEO of advisory firm Risk Cooperative. Disparte spoke of the need to shore up the grid before any further problems – noting that it won’t be long until Puerto Rico sees more wild weather: 

“The next hurricane season is but three weeks away and the grid is not reliable — that is part of the urgency,” said Disparte.

Power Ledger are working with factories and regulators to help companies on the island buy solar panels and battery storage. They’ll then use the blockchain technology to allow companies to trade energy with each other, and to sell supplies to employees or the community. This exchange will be able to take the forms of non-traditional (or, depending on which way you look at it, very traditional) exchange – for example you’ll be able to buy power via cash, cryptocurrency (e.g. Bitcoin or Ethereum) or even labour. 

Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority CEO Walter Higgins said in an interview last week that it will be another couple of months until they finish restoring electricity to the remaining 25,678 customers still in the dark following the storms ~8 months ago. So obviously they need to start looking at measures that will help them next time there’s a problem.

Disparte said this isn’t going to be about “just building back the old grid waiting for the next crisis and the next wave of financial constraints.” They’re trying to completely change the way Puerto Rico can address issues like this in the future and this is an inspiring real-world usage of this technology.

Power Ledger’s investors will be able to make investments in Puerto Rico energy assets later this year using their POWR tokens. If you want to learn more about it please click here to view our article on Power Ledger.

 

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