The giant lithium-ion battery Tesla boss Elon Musk promised the South Australian government earlier this year has been installed and tests will begin shortly, the South Australian government said in a statement.
South Australia’s PM jay Weatherill patted his government on the back, saying “While others are just talking, we are delivering our energy plan, making South Australia more self-sufficient, and providing back up power and more affordable energy for South Australians this summer.”
Musk had promised to have the battery up and running in 100 days, and it seems that this is one deadline Tesla will keep. Now the battery pack, which is fed electricity from a wind farm operated by French Neoen, will be energized and tested to see if it complies with relevant South Australian standards. The official launch of the complex is scheduled for next week.
South Australia suffered a severe blackout last year that left 1.7 million people without electricity, prompting Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull to lash out at state regulations that encouraged what he believed to be a too heavy a reliance on renewable energy: the Australian Energy Market Operator found that the blackout was caused by too sensitive protection mechanisms at some wind farms in South Australia. And, of course, there was no adequate energy storage capacity.Related: Norway’s $35B Oil Stock Dump Could Hurt The Industry
In March, Elon Musk bet on Twitter that Tesla could build a storage system with enough capacity to solve South Australia’s problem and do it within 100 days of signing the official contract. This took place in July, and at the time Tesla said the project should be completed by December.
The 100 MW/129 MWh battery will be capable of supplying electricity to 30,000 households for a period of eight hours at summer peak consumption rates, or 60,000 households for four hours, according to the Sydney Morning Herald. More importantly, however, it would serve to offset the intermittent nature of renewable energy that had such spectacularly dramatic consequences in South Australia last year.
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
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