TransAlta To Use Tesla Batteries In Commercial Energy Storage Project


The Powerpacks pump out 100 kW!

This project is said to be completed in late-2016.

TransAlta has been given $250,000 by Alberta Innovates – Energy & Environment Solutions to give this battery energy storage project a boost.

Tesla recently announced their energy systems, Powerwall & Powerpack. More info on those here.

TransAlta will have five of these Powerpacks, and there are 10 units in each “pack” (a total of 5 100kWh packs).

Tesla Energy "Power Packs"

Tesla Energy “Power Packs”

The President & CEO of TransAlta, Dawn Farrell stated:

“TransAlta is at the forefront of our industry in using innovation to improve environmental performance in power generation, and we are now implementing new and sustainable ways to store energy, setting the stage for the future. This project demonstrates our commitment to sustainable technology advancement.”

The director of Renewable Energy for AI-EES, Dr. Mark Summers comments:

“Clean power generation is a critical challenge for Alberta. Our goal is to have 20 per cent electricity generation from renewable energy in 2030. These energy storage projects will be instrumental in harnessing Alberta’s renewable resources and integrating them on the electricity grid affordably and efficiently.” 

TransAlta hopes that these lithium-ion battery energy systems will further encourage a bigger adoption of renewable/sustainable energy systems in Alberta. We hope so.

Tesla Energy Utility Design

A few more than 50 units here, but you get the idea…

TransAlta’s Lead Engineer, Technology, Dan Chapman adds:

“Home and business energy storage is just starting to gain momentum in the U.S, with California leading the way due to the incentives offered there, but our project will be the first of its kind in Alberta. This is a major step forward in putting new technology to work in Canada, and Tesla is already a leader in this field. We’re now looking for a customer to partner with us on this project.”

More info about TransAlta below:

“TransAlta is a power generation and wholesale marketing company focused on creating long-term shareholder value. TransAlta maintains a low-to-moderate risk profile by operating a highly contracted portfolio of assets in Canada, the United States and Australia. TransAlta’s focus is to efficiently operate wind, hydro, natural gas and coal facilities in order to provide customers with a reliable, low-cost source of power. For over 100 years, TransAlta has been a responsible operator and a proud contributor to the communities in which it works and lives. TransAlta has been selected by Sustainalytics as one of Canada’s Top 50 Socially Responsible Companies since 2009 and is recognized globally for its leadership on sustainability and corporate responsibility standards by FTSE4Good.

Source: TransAlta

Categories: Tesla


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9 Comments on "TransAlta To Use Tesla Batteries In Commercial Energy Storage Project"

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How does 5 powerpacks and the statement “a total of 50 100kW packs” fit? So this means they have a 0,5MWh / 5MW system? So each powerpack can deliver 1MW, this is new news and should not be hidden that much. Please explain more detailed.

I think that should be kWh, not kW. According to Tesla’s website, PowerPack is configured with “100kWh battery blocks”.

Unfortunately, confusing kW (power) and kWh (energy) is a common mistake in EV related articles, and even occasionally happens at InsideEVs.

Yes, our apologies. Mike made a little snafu there, it is 100 kWh

then 50 is also wrong? 5=!50

Nice to see someone putting these things to the test. Hopefully they will perform well and turn out to be very beneficial. This could start off a very interesting trend.

What’s to test? Other companies have been doing grid-connected lithium. The inverters have been tested in, oh, decades of solar installations. If you mean 18650 lithium cells specifically, those have been tested in, let’s see, over a decade of laptops, and over five years of Teslas.

The remaining questions are firmware (hence software simulations, with grid logs) and general build quality. A stationary, on-premises installation is easier than a highway vehicle. So build quality would require an epic screwup on Tesla’s behalf to affect the rollout. Okay, so there exists some probability of a quality screwup. Same as any other new product.

The hardware has certainly been tested, yes.

What needs to be tested in actual use is how well these units will hold up over time, how much maintenance they will require, and just how cost-effective they will be for peak-shaving and/or time-shifting of electric demand.

There are a lot of variables there which need pilot project testing in a real-world installation.

In New Zealand Vector, a lines company, has ordered 130 powerwalls to give away as a trial. 100 for domestic use, and 30 for schools & small business. Each unit will come with 3kW of PV as well. Title will revert to the bldg owner after 10 years of use.

At the end of the trial Vector is expected to order in quantity.

Where did you get this info on Vector? Are you a participant?