Tesla Powerpack Supports Renewable Energy in Australia
Tom Lombardo posted on July 09, 2017 |
Tesla is building the world's largest Li-ion battery, which will support an Australian wind farm.

Australia is expanding its commitment to renewable energy by adding a 100 MW/129 MWh Tesla battery bank - the largest Li-ion battery in the world* (so far) - to smooth out power fluctuations from South Australia's Hornsdale Wind Farm. The energy storage system will also provide power during peak demand hours - a welcome relief during the nation's hot summers.

Image courtesy of Tesla
Image courtesy of Tesla

Powerpack: Road Tested

The storage units are built around the Powerpack, Tesla's commercial/industrial/utility battery, which features onboard electronics to optimize performance, embedded sensors to monitor crucial parameters, an integrated liquid-based temperature control system that allows the Powerpack to work in all climates, and a grid-tied bidirectional inverter. Its modular design allows engineers to scale up the system as needed and provides easy swapping capability in the event of a unit failure. The batteries are the same type of Li-ion cells that have logged more than a billion miles in Tesla vehicles. Overall, the Powerpack's AC round-trip efficiency is just shy of 90 percent.

Wind Farm

In the event of a blackout, the 100 MW/129 MWh battery pack can power 30,000 homes for an hour or more. But the system's main purpose is to provide some cushion for the nearby 315 MW Hornsdale Wind Farm, which serves more than 180,000 Australian households. As the critics are fond of reiterating, the wind doesn't blow all the time, but when it delivers, it frequently exceeds the immediate demand. The batteries absorb excess power and give it back when the turbines aren't producing as much as needed.

Additionally, the energy storage facility will stabilize the grid through load shifting, demand response, and peak shaving. South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill hopes that the wind farm and battery system will drive down the cost of electricity in the province.

Tesla expects the facility to go online in December of 2017, just in time for summer in Australia. Elon Musk assured Australian authorities that the facility would be completed in "100 days or it's free." 

Image courtesy of Twitter
Image courtesy of Twitter

I hope they have good weather for the installation!

*Others are calling this the world's largest battery, but it's actually the world's largest Li-ion battery. The biggest battery of any type is a 200 MW/800 MWh vanadium flow battery in China.  


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