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Australia Businesses Power Hardware Technology

Tesla Completes World's Largest Battery Project In Half the Time Promised (engadget.com) 150

Rei writes: Tesla announced the completion of the world's largest battery -- a 100 MW/129 MWh wind-power backup system for 30,000 homes in South Australia. Three times more powerful than any other battery on Earth, the $50 million project had garnered press due to Elon Musk's Twitter boast that it would be completed within 100 days of the contract signing or it would be free. In the end, Tesla took it up a notch: the battery was finished 55 days from the date of contract signing and 99 days from the date of Musk's boast itself.
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Tesla Completes World's Largest Battery Project In Half the Time Promised

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 24, 2017 @07:32PM (#55617787)

    The man said he would do the thing, and he did the thing.

    • One can only hope his Big Fucking Rocket delivers comparable performance. I'll be truly impressed if he gets to Mars in half the time he promised!

    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) <mojo@@@world3...net> on Saturday November 25, 2017 @06:25AM (#55619483) Homepage Journal

      Which is great, I just wish he would do the other things like make to auto wipers work and stop autopilot trying to kill you. He promised to demonstrate self diving coast to coast this year, and only has a month left to deliver in winter weather.

      I have a lot too thank Musk for, but he's far from consistent.

  • by Baron_Yam ( 643147 ) on Friday November 24, 2017 @07:41PM (#55617827)

    I assumed when he made the boast that it would be 100 days from the signing of a contract, or that there'd be an allowance for shipping times to Australia and possibly other 'fudge factors'.

    I'm now assuming instead that there was a huge loss involved here in order to move and install the required hardware in such a short time, just to prove the point it was possible and would actually work, and thus make future sales more likely.

    • I assumed when he made the boast that it would be 100 days from the signing of a contract, or that there'd be an allowance for shipping times to Australia and possibly other 'fudge factors'.

      I'm now assuming instead that there was a huge loss involved here in order to move and install the required hardware in such a short time, just to prove the point it was possible and would actually work, and thus make future sales more likely.

      You never know - maybe he was so confident of the contract that he had parts shipped before the signing, possibly he had parts already in Australia during the signing.

      As a PR move it was actually pretty good.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Kinda. He bought the batteries "locally", reducing shipment time by weeks. They were made by Samsung, not Tesla.

      Any sufficiently motivated municipal electrical engineering company could have bolted all the pieces together.

      • Any sufficiently motivated municipal electrical engineering company could have bolted all the pieces together.

        Ultimately I think that is the point that they have proven: there system is simple, modular, pad mounted outdoors, and quick to deploy. Presumably economical and useful as well...

      • by thegarbz ( 1787294 ) on Saturday November 25, 2017 @05:15AM (#55619357)

        Kinda. He bought the batteries "locally", reducing shipment time by weeks. They were made by Samsung, not Tesla.

        Firstly it only takes a couple of "weeks" to ship from the USA in the first place. The difference between shipping from Korea vs USA to South Australia is 25 days vs 30 days (there's basic calculators you can use online for this).
        Secondly he bought the batteries from Samsung SDI not because of shipping time to Australia, but because of lack of availability from his normal supplier: Panasonic, whose batteries are made right next to South Korea anyway. The gigafactory and "made in America" was never part of the equation, and neither was shipping time.

        Any sufficiently motivated municipal electrical engineering company could have bolted all the pieces together.

        Most sufficiently motivated people can do most things. The problem is very few consider it as an option due to preconceived ideas about what a solution looks like. This entire exercise was about demonstrating the viability of a solution, not showing off that Tesla has any kind of superior engineering capabilities. This has basically been Tesla's process all along with the vast majority of their stuff actually being incredibly off the shelf, down to the type of batteries they use.

      • nope.
        He DID use Samsung cells, but they were shipped from Korea to America,specifically the Nv Gigafactory, the powerpacks were built, and finally shipped to Australia. At worst, he simply delayed powerwall installations.
        The fact is, that Tesla is using Korean-built Samsung cells for their powerpacks. Panasonic is supposedly good with it.
    • I assumed when he made the boast that it would be 100 days from the signing of a contract, or that there'd be an allowance for shipping times to Australia and possibly other 'fudge factors'.

      Okay, and all the evidence points to the idea that he simply built a large fudge factor in. If he thinks he can have it done in 50 days, but 100 days is still very impressive, why not commit to 100 days? Then he comes out looking like a genius, leaving people like you scratching your heads like confused chimpanzees and wondering how this was possible.

      • So... a redundant post just to be insulting? Nice.

        • So... a redundant post just to be insulting? Nice.

          Your post was there only to talk shit. You got what you were asking for, and now you're complaining about it.

  • by AmazingRuss ( 555076 ) on Friday November 24, 2017 @07:52PM (#55617875)

    I'm waaaaaiting....

    • I'm waaaaaiting....

      I'm sure they can complete the battery pack and bolt an off the shelf inverter to it for you.

    • cool. THey are now allowing all of you M3 buyers configure your car.
      So, what # are you in the line? Or are you just BSing us?
  • Any time anyone challenges major economic interests, in this case the electric utilities equipment industries, big oil, big coal, or any other financer of the global warming denial PR biz, arseholes will come out of the woodwork. Big pharma has done it to small innovators that don't want to be bought out. And others too numerous to mention.

  • by CanadianMacFan ( 1900244 ) on Friday November 24, 2017 @08:15PM (#55617985)

    The batteries were sitting around waiting for cars to be built so why not put them to use instead. By the time that car production gets ramped up more batteries will have been made.

    • by EnsilZah ( 575600 ) <EnsilZah&Gmail,com> on Saturday November 25, 2017 @03:09AM (#55619149)

      Tesla uses different battery chemistry for the stationary storage units.

      • by thegarbz ( 1787294 ) on Saturday November 25, 2017 @05:36AM (#55619389)

        Tesla uses different battery chemistry for the stationary storage units.

        Not quite. Tesla uses different battery chemistry for their stationary storage units designed specifically for daily cycling, e.g. the Powerwall which has nickel-manganese-cobalt chemistry. Additionally this battery is much safer and less likely to burn your house down due to thermal runaway. Oh but it's more expensive.

        The PowerPack (which is their grid storage solution) actually uses nickel-cobalt-aluminum, the same chemistry as their cars. This is mainly due to the load expectations being similar. The grid connected solution is not expected to be cycled on a daily basis and the chemistry favours high rates of charge and discharge which is precisely what is needed in order to stabilise a large grid, especially when the primary reason for the design is to avoid cascading failures due to a breaker opening somewhere.

        Now that being said the Powerwall used to come in two different versions, a daily and a backup model, the latter having a larger capacity and also the same nickel-cobalt-aluminum batteries as used in the cars. Not sure if that is still the case though.

        Now that ALSO being said, earlier this year Tesla's car division hired an expert who some people believe are the first step to the company shifting the Car / Powerpack chemistries to NMC as well.

    • The batteries were sitting around waiting for cars to be built so why not put them to use instead. By the time that car production gets ramped up more batteries will have been made.

      No they weren't. They specifically had to source them from a different supplier (Samsung SDI) due to a lack of batteries from both Panasonic and their own Gigafactory.

  • Two weeks later it blew up like a freaking Galaxy S7.
  • No it isn't because technically the Earth is one giant battery.
  • What I find amazing (though a little disappointing, like a Wizard of Oz moment) is that these huge batteries are made of thousands and thousands of cells, in this case 6 million (by my calculation [reddit.com]) of Tesla's 2170 cells. The clever bit is the monitoring and control and presumably the design and manufacture as a series of repeatable modules.

  • Big battery packs like this will not be enough to solve the problems with wind and solar.

    Critics of solar and wind energy claim that unlike coal or nuclear, it's often not dependable -- sometimes, obviously, the wind doesn't blow and the sun doesn't shine. Lithium battery backup systems from companies like Tesla can charge up when such power plants are productive, however, and then provide backup energy when they're not.

    Critics of coal and nuclear will point out that they cannot load follow. With a big battery pack like this to follow the peaks and valleys of power demands any energy source looks good. Nuclear produces less CO2 than solar, and about the same as wind, per energy produced. Nuclear is safer than any other energy source we have today. Nuclear power is cheaper than solar, cheaper than hydro, and cheaper than offshore wi

    • I think Nuclear is great too, but with the amount of regulation, NIMBYism, cost of initial investment, time of construction, waste disposal, cost of eventual decommission, even though it makes sense in the long run, few are willing to make the investment.

      What I find interesting about wind/solar/battery is they're modular.
      If you have some land, some roof space, you can put up a certain amount of power generation, maybe add to it later, replace parts.

      In less densely populated areas you could have a decentrali

    • by olau ( 314197 )

      Oh, give a rest. Nuclear isn't cheaper than wind and solar in South Australia, not by a wide margin. And both wind and solar are falling year-by-year.

      I don't think you're going to see lots of new nuclear plants in the US either. It's just too expensive.

      • Nuclear isn't cheaper than wind and solar in South Australia, not by a wide margin.

        That's because nuclear power costs in Australia is effectively infinite. There is no nuclear power in Australia. How can you even make such a statement with a straight face? I can look at the data and I see this, wind and solar takes ten times as much steel and concrete over nuclear for the same power capacity.

        Where's the steel and concrete in wind power? That might not be completely obvious as the tower is a visible steel structure but the concrete anchor below the ground isn't obvious unless you've ha

      • Hmmm

        South Australia, home to 23% of the worlds uranium deposits, on one of the most geologically stable continents on the planet.
        A better candidate for nuclear generation I could not think of.
  • by Gravis Zero ( 934156 ) on Saturday November 25, 2017 @01:43AM (#55618959)

    Three times more powerful than any other battery on Earth,

    They've finally created a battery for a smartphone with an AMD chip! ;)

    • Three times more powerful than any other battery on Earth,

      They've finally created a battery for a smartphone with an AMD chip! ;)

      Or an Intel one. Remember XScale? It scaled up, all right, but it didn't scale down. It had by far the largest minimum power consumption of any ARM core of its day.

      AMD has traditionally been way, way better at ultra low-power parts than Intel. Remember GEODE? Intel didn't even have anything vaguely close to that.

  • Anyone know what are the expected lifetime of this battery?

  • This is some pretty cool stuff. Think we'll all have Tesla batteries installed in our homes and offices in ten years? Probably not... but a man can dream.
  • Three times more powerful than any other battery in the world??

    NGK has a sodium-sulphur battery system backing a wind farm in Rokkasho, Japan which has a capacity of 245MWh compared to the headline 129MWh of the Australian Tesla battery.

    https://www.ngk.co.jp/nas/case... [ngk.co.jp]

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