Sunday, May 3, 2015

Tesla announces electric energy

Electric car maker Tesla could soon be coming to a home near you – though not as you know it.The American company on Friday announced its new investment in batteries for homes, businesses and utilities, as it continues to leverage its booming empire beyond the electric car."Tesla is not just an automotive company, it's an energy innovation company," the company said in a statement.

"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."

A major proponent for Tesla's new investment is a domestic device it calls the Powerwall: a rechargeable lithium-ion battery designed to store energy at a residential level for load shifting (charging during low rate periods and discharging during higher rate periods), backup power and self-consumption of solar power generation.

The devices employ a liquid thermal control system and software that receives dispatch commands from a solar inverter. It is wall-mounted and is integrated with the local power grid to harness excess power and give customers the flexibility to draw energy for their own source.

The device will be available in the US from around August, priced at approximately $4435 (AUD) for a 10kWh version, or $3800 (AUD) for a 7kWh version.

The batteries are wall-mounted, offered with 10 or 20 year warranties and measure 1300mm high, 860mm wide and 180mm deep. Tesla says the Powerwall can operate in a temperature range of between minus-20 degrees celcius and 43 degrees celcius.

"Both can be connected with solar or grid and both can provide backup power. The 10kWh Powerwall is optimised to provide backup when the grid goes down, providing power for your home when you need it most," Tesla says.

"When paired with solar power, the 7kWh Powerwall can be used in daily cycling to extend the environmental and cost benefits of solar into the night when sunlight is unavailable."