Tesla Motors Chief Executive Elon Musk has unveiled a suite of batteries for utility companies, businesses and homes that he hopes will help the world end its reliance on fossil fuels for electricity generation.
On April 30, Musk revealed the energy-storage product line, which will be marketed under the brand Tesla Energy.
The smallest battery, called the Powerwall, is designed for home usage. About four feet tall, three feet wide and six inches deep, the Powerwall can be hung inside a garage or other convenient location. Tesla will produce two versions of the Powerwall: a 10kWh unit optimized for backup applications, and a 7kWh unit optimized for daily use. The 10kWh Powerwall will cost $3,500, and the 7kWh unit will cost $3,000, not including installation and inverter.
“With Tesla Energy, Tesla is amplifying its efforts to accelerate the move away from fossil fuels to a sustainable energy future with Tesla batteries, enabling homes, business, and utilities to store sustainable and renewable energy to manage power demand, provide backup power and increase grid resilience,” the company announced in a press release. Deliveries of the Powerwall to customers will begin this summer.
The company says the battery systems will offer users three main benefits:
- Load shifting: Financial savings can be had by charging the battery during off-peak periods when electricity rates are lower, and discharging it during peak periods when rates are more expensive.
- Optimizing solar power usage: Storing surplus solar energy for use at night.
- Back-up power: Keeping the lights on in event of an outage.
Tesla Energy will supply businesses and utilities with large-capacity batteries. Utility-scale systems, for example, will be powered by 100kWh battery blocks that can be grouped together to produce 500kWh to 10MWh of storage.
Several companies and utilities have been working with Tesla in pilot tests of the batteries in advance of the world-wide product rollout. Amazon Web Services is using them to power data centers, Target has installed them in some stores, and Jackson Family Wines is using them in conjunction with its solar arrays.
On the utility side, Southern California Edison is working with Tesla on demonstration projects aimed at bringing battery-storage system costs down for businesses and residential customers.
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