Electric carmaker giant Tesla Motors Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA) revealed a new huge battery storage plant in the California desert, which is considered as the largest of its type in the world. The company joins similarly giant facilities put up by AES and Altagas, which are both reportedly set to take-off around the same time,.
Collectively, the plants establish 15% of the battery storage fitted worldwide last year.
According to reports, each component, included 16,000 lithium-ion battery cells, is intended to pull power from the grid by day and then feed it back in as demand increases. Accomplished of powering 15,000 homes, the system was considered as part of a backup against estimated energy shortages after a huge methane leak at a natural gas facility near Los Angeles.
Meanwhile for Tesla Motors (TSLA), which have spent more than $5 billion in its so-called Giga-factory in the Nevada desert, this project has significant importance, as its feasible and cost-effective battery storage is critical to wind and solar energy eventually hit out fossil fuels off the grid. And beyond a handful of grid-scale pilots, this is the first time such a system has gone online.
“It’s sort of hard to comprehend sometimes the speed all this is going at,” said Tesla Chief Technology Officer J.B. Straubel in as interview. “Our storage is growing as fast as we can humanly scale it.”
Up until of late, battery storage has been a way more expensive means of meeting demand increases than natural gas “peaker” plants. Nevertheless a prompt drop in lithium ion battery prices over the past two years, driven by the rise of electric cars has made the technology far more feasible. Lithium-ion batteries now are available at almost half the price today as they were in 2014.