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The world’s biggest lithium ion battery, built by Tesla, was switched on on Friday in South Australia, ahead of the State Government’s deadline of the beginning of the summer, and well ahead of Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s self-imposed deadline of “100 days or it’s free.”
The Tesla powerpacks connected to Neoen’s Hornsdale windfarm are already operational and delivering power to the National Energy Market, the South Australia Government said in a statement.
In this venture, Tesla delivered as promised, and well ahead of Musk’s 100-day deadline, with the battery coming to life just 63 days after the grid connection-agreement was signed.
The giant lithium-ion battery was installed last week and tests were then carried out.
“Today’s launch follows a successful period of regulatory testing that ensured the battery’s ability to both act as a generator and charge to and from the National Energy Market,” South Australia said on December 1.
“This is history in the making,” Premier Jay Weatherill said.
“Neoen and Tesla approached the State Government with their bold plan to deliver this project, and they have met all of their commitments, ensuring South Australia has back up power this summer,” he added.
“The completion of the world’s largest lithium-ion battery in record time shows that a sustainable, effective energy solution is possible,” Tesla said in South Australia’s press release.
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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 windfarms in South Australia. And, of course, there was no adequate energy storage capacity.
The South Australia government announced its energy plan in March 2017. That same month Musk tweeted that “Tesla will get the system installed and working 100 days from contract signature or it is free.”
After a competitive process, French renewable energy company Neoen and Tesla were awarded in July the contract to deliver the project.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.