Tesla is well known as an electric car company, but it also has a thriving business in battery storage, including installing utility-scale batteries to support the grid. Bloomberg photographer reports that Tesla is currently building a battery installation in the new state of Texas. The project is in Angleton.
Tesla has yet to publish the project, which operates under an unidentified Tesla subsidiary called Gambit Energy Storage LLC. When a Bloomberg photographer visited, a worker banned shooting and said the project was “top secret.” The project appears to consist of 20 large battery banks that have been covered in white sheets. The installation will use a lithium iron phosphate battery which is expected to last 10 to 20 years. The document says that it will generate about $ 1 million in property tax revenue for the city of Angleton.
Texas has its power grid which the Electric Reliability Council of Texas supervises. “Angleton forms highly volatile ‘nodes’ in the ERCOT energy network, and the larger system will benefit from the energy properties that the battery can provide.”
This was revealed through a battery storage facility in Texas. This facility consists of several giant batteries, which will later be used to supply the electricity in the area. This facility is only to support the main power plant. This means that if the power plant requires additional supply or is experiencing problems, then the electricity needs can be temporarily supplied by the battery. It is targeted, the facility with a capacity of 100 MW can start operating in June. That way, later, the community and several industries in Texas will enjoy a more stable electricity supply.
In the long term, large battery facilities will be needed to replace solar and wind power in due time. But many battery installations today don’t have sufficient capacity to do many of these things. For example, Tesla’s South Australian battery only has enough capacity to supply power for more than an hour at a full 100 MW power rating. In contrast, early utility-scale batteries were used to smooth out short-term fluctuations and keep the power supply balanced with demand. If the power plant suddenly fails or demand spikes suddenly, the utility-scale battery can provide several minutes of power while the utility makes the necessary adjustments.
Utilities traditionally deal with this by having natural gas-fired power plants on standby 24/7. Since these “paring mills” may only be used for a few hours per year, the energy they produce is prohibitively expensive on a per kilowatt basis. Batteries can absorb excess power in times of abundance and then discharge at peak demand. Allows electric utilities to partially shutdown gas-fired peaker plants without compromising grid reliability.
As batteries become cheaper, it becomes economical to install larger batteries to balance supply and demand over a 24-hour cycle. Allows utilities to rely more heavily on wind and solar power. This is why analysts expect utility-scale batteries to be a booming market over the next decade or two. It will require more storage capacity to remove the carbonization of the power grid.