Tesla wins 100MW battery bid in South Australia

The utility-scale energy storage system will be paired with Neoen’s 309MW wind farm to ensure stable power supply during peak hours.

Tesla has won a contract to build the world’s largest lithium-ion battery storage system, which will be paired with Neoen’s Hornsdale Wind Farm in South Australia. 

The 100MW/129MW Tesla Powerpack system, the entire energy storage system component for the 309MW wind project, will store the energy generated from the wind turbines and deliver the electricity during peak hours to help maintain stability of the state’s power supply. 

Upon completion by December this year, the system will provide enough energy to power over 30,000 homes, approximately equal to the number of households affected during the blackout period. 

South Australia has suffered significant blackouts due to storm and heat in the past few months. The state government was looking for a utility-scale energy storage solution through a competitive bidding process early this year. Elon Musk, founder of Tesla, expressed interest in the project over twitter in March, with a promise to “get the system installed and working 100 days from contract signature or it is free”. 

The electric vehicle maker said the grid-scale energy storage project is “not only sustainable, but will help solve power shortages, reduce intermittencies and manage summertime peak load to improve the reliability of South Australia’s electrical infrastructure”. It also added that its batteries are now being installed for residential customers in the country. 

The Hornsdale wind project, which has a combined investment cost of more than A$870 million ($660 million; €579 million), is entering its latest phase, with the financial close of its final stage reached in March. The three stages of the project have secured long-term feed-in tariffs with the ACT government.