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Tesla has introduced a utility-scale energy storage system dubbed Megapack, with up to 3 MWh of storage capacity and 1.5 MW of inverter capacity, the company said in a blog post.
According to Tesla, the Megapack sports 60 percent higher energy density than the Powerpack—Tesla’s household energy storage system—and is easy to install and connect. In fact, Tesla says, using the Megapack, it could build a 250-MW/1GWh power plant that is emissions-free within three months.
Megapack installations can also be used as an alternative to gas peaker plants, and Tesla is already working on a project with PG&E in California where it will deploy the new storage systems. The project involves the construction of a 182.5 MW lithium-ion battery storage system at PG&E’s Moss Landing substation.
“Peaker power plants fire up whenever the local utility grid can’t provide enough power to meet peak demand,” the company said. “They cost millions of dollars per day to operate and are some of the least efficient and dirtiest plants on the grid. Instead, a Megapack installation can use stored excess solar or wind energy to support the grid’s peak loads.”
Tesla’s energy storage business has been blooming: in its second-quarter report, the company said installations had increased by 81 percent on the quarter and as much as 104 percent on the year to a record-high 415 MWh. Its revenues from energy generation and storage jumped 13 percent on a quarterly basis, although it inched down on an annual basis, by 2 percent, to US$368 million.
U.S. grid-connected energy storage capacity this year is set for a twofold increase to 712 MW from 376 MW last year. What’s more, between 2019 and 2024, storage capacity will soar to almost 5 GW, of which 90 percent will be battery storage, according to IHS Markit. This will make the United States the country with the most energy storage capacity connected to the grid, ahead of the current global leader in this area, South Korea.
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
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Irina is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing on the oil and gas industry.