Tesla has deployed a new Powerpack system in Pickering, Ontario to power a new community microgrid pilot project.

If successful, it could lead to more microgrids in Canada.

Ever since the launch of Tesla Energy and its stationary energy storage products, Tesla started working on microgrid projects.

The idea is to have a self-sufficient energy system using self-produced renewable energy stored in batteries and supplying a small community or facility.

After the acquisition of SolarCity, it made even more sense for Tesla to get into the microgrid business since it now had expertise with both batteries and solar power.

The first flagship microgrid project with SolarCity was on the island of Ta’u in American Samoa, where Tesla deployed a microgrid consisting of a 1.4-megawatt solar array and a six-megawatt hour energy storage system with 60 Tesla Powerpacks.

The microgrid saved the nearly 600 residents of the island more than 100,000 gallons of fuel per year previously used to supply them with electricity.

Around this time last year, we learned that Tesla had deployed over 120 microgrids around the world.

Now we learn of a new one in Canada that is interesting because it’s not about powering a remote community, but providing backup power and grid services to a small community near Toronto, Ontario.

The project is a partnership between several companies to build a new type of community with more power over their electricity supply:

The Independent System Electricity Operator (IESO), Opus One Solutions, Elexicon Energy and Marshall Homes have partnered to create the Altona Towns community of 27 homes that comprise a fully integrated microgrid. With about 35,000 new residential homes built in Ontario each year, the project will demonstrate how microgrids can benefit homeowners while reducing the amount of electricity needed from the grid, helping make the provincial electricity system more affordable for all Ontarians.

They installed three Tesla powerpacks and an inverter:

Here’s are the specs of their new microgrid:

  • A 250 kW/500 kWh battery
  • 25 kW of rooftop solar generation
  • An electric vehicle charger
  • Real-time visibility into home end-uses for customers via an app

This is an interesting alternative to Tesla Powerwalls at home. Instead, a small community can band together to have community-level energy storage, much like community solar, which has been around for a while.

We have seen similar initiatives in Australia using Tesla Powerpacks.

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