Questions about the Tesla grid scale battery proposed at Jamestown South Australia

We have all seen the news blitz – SA Government announces Tesla will build 100MW giant battery as part of its energy security plan 7 Jul 2017 – Elon Musk says the battery has a capacity of 129MWhrs – I am hoping for answers to the following questions – and there may well be others.
A – How many MWhrs will the wind-farm have to generate and be paid for to store 129MWhrs in the battery?
This should reveal the percentage efficiency for the charging of the battery calculated as 129/MWhrs required to charge battery. Another forum Q! & A re battery charging losses.
B – We heard that the battery requires cooling so what is the heat loss expressed in MWhrs over time when the battery is charging? and discharging? Those heat losses must be known.
C – When fully charged and assuming no load – what is the percentage electricity leakage loss per hour for the battery standing idle waiting to work?
D – When the battery is required to use the stored electricity to say meet a peak power shortage in Adelaide – where most demand is – What percentage of the electricity will be lost in discharge and in the 216kms of transmission to Adelaide including losses in voltage stepups and stepdowns normally a part of electricity transmission.
E – I hope the cost is fully revealed in time so the great success can be comprehensively explained to the masses.
F – It would be informative to see an analysis of the effectiveness of the “Salisbury battery storage trial” where at least 100 batteries have been installed at Adelaide homes as at the end of 2016.

I am wondering if in all the process from A to D – would even 50% of the energy input at A ever make it through the battery to consumers in Adelaide?

13 thoughts on “Questions about the Tesla grid scale battery proposed at Jamestown South Australia”

  1. The batteries will require dc, which must be produced from the ac of the grid, and they will return dc which will have to be converted back to ac again, all at various voltages. Sounds like a recipe for substantial losses.

  2. All snake oil pure and simple, from the world’s number one snake oil salesman. Currently into US tax payers for $5 billion in subsidies. Not to mention Musk’s company fortunes currently heading south on the share market.
    No surprise, another five minutes of Weatherill battery powered madness, for which the people of South Afailure will pay for through the nose.

  3. There is an issue that drives . me . up . the . wall

    People, including the meeja and even this honourable website, constantly intermix W (ie. KW, MW, GW) with Wh (ie. KWh, MWh, GWh). This is an abomination.

    So Weatherdill’s humungous new battery has a wunderbar power rating (excluding transform losses) of 129MW.

    For how many hours ?? That is, 129MWh for how long ??

    Supermarket frozen foods thaw out to inedibility; sales registers/credit card & ATM access stops; water/sewage/fuel pumps stop; high-rise air con stops (and the windows are designed not to open); elevators stop halfway between the 10th and 11th floor for ?? … the list is endless.

    The AGW advocates slide over this question by saying that the battery will only be needed until the wind blows again. How long is a piece of string, you see ?

    This fragile dependency will cost the taxpayer over AUD$100m. And the meeja, bureaucrats and politicians just keep on lying to our faces/.

  4. Ron is correct. Probably about 5% loss in converting AC to DC to charge the batteries. Conversion to AC will presumably be by a DC motor driving an AC generator, not using an inverter at this scale. Losses on both sides.

  5. Who knows the usable capacity but 100MW/129MWh is quoted here.
    I presume that means 129MWh at a 100MW discharge rate. So I guess that means 1hr 17min supplying 100MW or 100/3000, i.e. 3.3 % of SA’s summer maximum demand (~3000MW) for 1hr 17 min. Possibly a higher discharge rate would be possible, but whatever it is it cannot be anything more than a drop in the bucket when it comes to replacing the energy deficiency of a day without wind – pathetic.

  6. Couple of articles of interest. The Reneweconomy people reported on the Salisbury trial in March.
    Batteries not configured to remove demand peaks, network says 27 March 2017

    and this report that Garnaut’s mob say the Tesla Jamestown project might kill their battery project at Port Augusta. Wow 100MW heap powerful medicine.
    Tesla big SA battery plan forces Zen Energy to reconsider Port Augusta solar 10 July 2017
    Hopefully a letoff for taxpayers.

  7. I saw that 70% of the battery capacity is reserved for government use. Whatever that means.

  8. Please please correct me if this 5000 figure is wrong. The FIRST thing to look at with any rechargeable battery cost is the replacement cycle life. So far as I can find, under perfect conditions (which never happen) these batteries last 5000 cycles. So 100 million dollars / 5000 = $20000 per cycle. If it were to return 100MWh each cycle that is adding $200 to each MWh. So to run the battery as a business. If it buys at $70, it needs to sell at over $270 per MWh to break even with no other costs even counted.
    Then add disposal cost.

  9. Siliggy, you’ve put your finger on why the rent seeking, snake oil salesmen are beating a path to gullible Jay’s door. This kind of smoke and mirrors will only make unaffordable renewable power even more unaffordable.

  10. To be economically viable (in the abcence of subsidies) pumped storage is dependent on a reliable scource of near zero cost early hours base load power every morning. It’s no accident that base load coal, the focus of the green/Left anti fossil fuel Jehad, has pretty much destroyed low cost off peak coal power. This has pretty much ensured that pumped storage, marginal even when we had that surplus coal power, will be nothing more than a rent seekers dream, i.e. It will simply make already unaffordable wind power even more unaffordable.

  11. Two other things to take into account:

    1. Plenty of power required to make the battery in the first place.

    2. You have to keep the battery charged up all the time so it’s ready in an emergency. So it might be draining power for months or years without being used. In fact if you had an efficient grid (such as was common around the world until the last few years of renew-a-balls madness) you would never need it at all.

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