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Tesla begins construction on world’s largest Megapack project for PG&E

PG&E announced that it started construction with Tesla on a giant Megapack project deployed at the electric substation in Moss Landing in Monterey County, California.

We first learned of the project at PG&E’s Moss Landing substation when they submitted it to CPUC and the company was in talks with Tesla in 2017.

It involves four separate energy storage projects and two of them should become the world’s largest battery systems.

Dynegy is going to deploy a 300MW / 1,200MWh project on PG&E’s grid while the Tesla project will be a 182.5MW / 730MWh, which could eventually go up to 1.1GWh.

In 2018, we obtained Tesla’s proposal for the project and it shows that the company plans to use ‘Megapack’ instead of its usual Powerpack for large utility-scale projects.

Earlier this year, the project was officially approved.

Now PG&E is announcing today that they are starting construction on the 182.5MW / 730MWh project with Tesla:

“The system will be designed, constructed, and maintained by PG&E and Tesla, and will be owned and operated by PG&E. Construction is expected to continue into early next year. PG&E aims to have the system energized in early 2021 and fully operational in the second quarter of 2021.”

Fong Wan, senior vice president of Energy Policy and Procurement at PG&E, commented on the announcement:

“Battery energy storage plays an integral role in enhancing overall electric grid efficiency and reliability, integrating renewable resources while reducing reliance on fossil fuel generation. It can serve as an alternative to more expensive, traditional wires solutions, resulting in lower overall costs for our customers. The scale, purpose and flexibility of the Moss Landing Megapack system make it a landmark in the development and deployment of utility-scale batteries.”

The project consists of 256 Tesla Megapack battery units on 33 concrete slabs.

For comparison, this project alone represents almost double the capacity of energy storage that Tesla deployed during the last quarter.

The energy capacity is going to be used to replace peaker plants and it is expected to save the electric utility over $100 million:

“PG&E forecasts the Moss Landing BESS will save more than $100 million over the 20-year life of the project, when compared to the forecasted local capacity requirements and associated procurement costs that would have been necessary in absence of the BESS.”

PG&E still has the option to contract Tesla to increase the capacity of the project to 1.1 GWh. There’s no word on exercising this option at this time.

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