Tesla Motors held its 2015 Annual Shareholders Meeting today at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View. During his presentation, Elon Musk, Tesla’s CEO, announced that Tesla will be doubling the power output of the Powerwall, Tesla’s residential energy storage system, to 7KW at peak usage and 5KW for steady usage.
Musk confirmed that the price will remain the same, $3,000 for the 7KWh daily cycle version and $3,500 for the 10KWh weekly cycle version.
Tesla offers 2 different versions of the Powerwall battery system. The 7KWh pack is built to be discharged daily in order to take advantage of a solar power installation or to manage usage, especially if you are paying your electric utility by time-of-use. It could also be combined with multiple packs in order to take a solar installation completely off-grid. The 10KWh pack is meant to be use as a backup power system. Ideally, it should only be use in case of power outages, but the battery pack is built to withstand weekly cycles for over 10 years.
Musk admitted that even though the demand for the Powerwall has been overwhelming with over 38,000 reservations in just one week, the overall reaction was mixed. The biggest complaint was the steady output of only 2KW which isn’t really enough for an average household. They listened to the complaints and adjusted the offering to a now impressive 5KW.
Tesla’s CEO reiterated that the company expects demand for energy storage to mainly come from utilities. He said that as much as 80% of Tesla’s stationary storage capacity should go to utility scale project. Last week, Tesla closed on a 500MWh deal with Advanced Microgrid Solutions to supply the company with battery packs for electric utilities. Musk described Tesla’s solution as a “plug and play” option for utilities which can be installed in existing electric substations.
During the meeting, JB Straubel, Tesla’s Chief Technology Officer, said he expects that wide adoption of energy storage at the utility level will help the electric companies to take full advantage of their infrastructure investments by leveling the electric load.
Even with these changes in power output, the Powerwall is still expected to start deliveries later this summer and then to ramp up next year as Tesla shifts production of the battery packs to their “Gigafactory” in Nevada.
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