SA to get world's biggest Li-ion battery

Monday, 10 July, 2017

A deal between the South Australian government, American automaker, energy storage and solar panel company Tesla and French renewable energy company Neoen will see South Australia get the world’s largest lithium-ion battery.

Through a competitive bidding process, Tesla was selected to provide a 100 MW/129 MWh Powerpack system. The energy storage systems from Tesla will be paired with Neoen’s Hornsdale Wind Farm and installed before summer. Neoen was selected on a merit basis after a multistage procurement process attracted around 90 responses to the expression of interest, with 14 proponents invited to supply and five shortlisted for detailed assessment.

The consortium demonstrated it is capable of delivering 100 MW of capacity by 1 December and provided a highly competitive commercial offer with the best value for money.

Neoen and Tesla have a track record in comparable scale projects and are committed to deliver on time at the lowest cost with a suite of value-adding initiatives.

Tesla was awarded the entire energy storage system component of the project. Upon completion by December 2017, this system will be the largest lithium-ion battery storage project in the world and will provide enough power for more than 30,000 homes, approximately equal to the number of homes that lost power during the blackout period, Tesla said in a blog post.

Confirming the commitment from Tesla CEO Elon Musk to deliver the battery within 100 days or it is free, it has been agreed between Tesla and the South Australian government that the starting date for the 100 days will be once the grid interconnection agreement has been signed.

The battery will operate at all times providing stability services for renewable energy and will be available to provide emergency back-up power if a shortfall in energy is predicted.

The deal will also bring other investments by both Neoen and Tesla into South Australia’s economy, with details to be announced in the future.

The selection of Neoen will also strengthen South Australia’s links with France’s high-tech sector and reinforce the state’s world-leading role in tackling global warming.

In March, the state government announced a plan for South Australia to take charge of its energy future, ensuring the state would become more self-reliant.

Neoen Deputy CEO Romain Desrousseaux said that at 100 MW and 129 MWh, the Hornsdale Power Reserve will become not only the largest renewable generator in the state but also home to the largest lithium-ion battery in the world, with the company’s long-term, direct investment in South Australia growing to almost $1 billion since 2013.

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