Tesla Unveils 3MWh “Megapack” Battery

Tesla has delivered its long-promised answer to the utility-scale energy storage boom, unveiling on Tuesday a 1.5MW/3MWh “megapack” battery that it says will go into direct competition with gas “peaking” plants.

The US battery manufacturer said the new lithium-ion product, inspired by the great success of South Australia’s 100MW/129MWh Hornsdale Power Reserve, would allow the installation of gigawatt-scale “power plants” four times faster than a fossil fuel plant.

It says the modular technology, which comes fully-assembled, with up to 3MWh of storage and 1.5MW of inverter capacity, could be used to deliver a 250MW/1 GWh power plant in less than three months on a three-acre footprint.

The new grid-scale batteries build on engineering of the smaller-scale Powerpacks, which themselves were used to build Neoen’s big battery in Hornsdale in a period of just 4.5 months, and at a cost of $91 million.

The megapack, however, features a 60 per cent increase in energy density, and is significantly more compact, requiring 40 per cent less space. It is also less complex, allowing it to be installed 10x faster than current systems.

The company says these changes, combined with huge demand for large-scale storage solutions on rapidly changing grids, are expected to grow the amount of Tesla battery capacity installed around the world “exponentially.”

“In the past year alone, we have installed more than 1 GWh of global storage capacity with our current storage products, Powerwall and Powerpack, bringing our total global footprint to more than 2 GWh of cumulative storage,” Tesla said in a statement. “With Megapack, this number will continue to accelerate exponentially in the coming years.”