Tesla Motors (NASDAQ: TSLA) and the French energy company Neoen have unveiled the world’s largest battery farm in Australia.
The Hornsdale Power Reserve near Jamestown, South Australia will be capable of holding between 100 megawatts; or 100 million watts of electricity, Reneweconomy reported. The lithium-ion batteries will be supplied by Tesla, windmills owned by Neoen will provide the electricity.
The farm is designed to help South Australia avoid rolling blackouts which have become a major problem in the state, Seeking Alpha contributor Keith Williams noted. It is also the largest existing battery farm in the world five times bigger than the 20 megawatt project Tesla installed near Los Angeles in January.
The farm is supposed to be 60% larger than any battery storage solution in the world, Gizmodo reported. It will use Tesla’s Powerpack 2 battery systems and hold enough electricity to power 4,000 homes for 24 hours. That should be enough to get the region through the blackout caused by a 50 year storm.
Musk claims Tesla can Install a 100 megawatt Battery Farm in 100 days
Australia is a growing market for battery farms, Neoen is building a 196 megawatt wind project and a 20 megawatt battery farm in Victoria. There are plans for battery farms that might store up to 200 megawatts of electricity in Queensland.
Not surprisingly Elon Musk himself was on hand for the Hornsdale project’s unveiling. He also made a surprising boast in a Tweet to an Australian named Mike Cannon-Brookes.
“Tesla will get the system installed working 100 days from contract signature or it is free,” Musk tweeted. That proves Tesla is a major competitor in the battery storage business.
Can Tesla Build Battery Storage and Model 3 at the Same Time?
It also raises an interesting question: can Tesla build battery storage and Model 3 at the same time. Tesla recently admitted that it was having finding enough battery packs for its’ newest car.
One has to wonder if all the lithium-ion production from the Gigafactory is going to the utility projects. Is Musk using them to finance his electric car dreams? Will Tesla be able to produce Model 3 without putting the Gigafctory in full production or buying batteries from somebody else?
Musk has certainly proved that there is a huge market for battery storage out there. If projects like this continue the coal industry’s days are numbered and the world really will need a hundred Gigafactories. It might need more if every large city in the world installs several battery farms to provide electricity.