Chinese Company ‘Tesla New Energy’ Steals Tesla’s Name And Logo

screenshot

The ‘Tesla New Energy’ website yesterday.

Many people are aware Tesla is planning to produce solar tiles, but not so many know the company is also has plans to sell conventional solar panels.  According to one report, Tesla is going to follow the novel approach of producing them inside a buffalo in New York.  Production is scheduled to begin within two months and the panels will only be available from Tesla.

The panels are not featured on Tesla’s Australian site and I currently have no information on when or if they will be available here.  But if you do enough searching on the internet or, more likely, receive some spam from them as I did, you may think you can order some of these panels from the Tesla New Energy factory in China. [Read more…]

Tesla Solar Roofs Are Very Expensive And Their Warranty Is Far From Infinite

elon musk is buzz lightyear

Infinity Warranty? As Chuck D once said. Don’t believe the (Tesla) hype.

In October last year Tesla announced they were making tiles with built-in solar cells that would allow a roof to generate electricity without the need for solar panels.  Installations of these solar roofs will start in the United States in June and you can go to Tesla’s Australian site and slap down a $1,310 deposit to reserve one.  Tesla says they will be available here in 2018 and, given their record of meeting their own self-imposed deadlines, they should definitely arrive before the heat death of the universe.  Just so long as they don’t get cancelled like the DC Powerwall 2. [Read more…]

Tesla Says Powerwall 2’s Return Will Be 8-15%. Really?

powerwall spruiker

Is it reasonable to expect a “8-15% return on investment” on a Powerwall 2?

Last month, Lyndon Rive, Tesla’s Vice President for Energy Products, stood up in front of a large group of people, including me, and promised the Powerwall 2 will deliver a return between 8% and 15%. [Read more…]

Billionaire’s Gambit – Why we should accept Musk’s offer.

deal

Last Thursday in a trendy re-purposed Substation near Melbourne, Elon Musk’s cousin Lyndon Rive claimed he could solve SA’s energy woes in 100 days.

How?

By installing 100-300MWh of batteries.

Big Call.

A day later, via Twitter, Aussie tech billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes asks Musk if he’s serious about “100MW1” of batteries in 100 days. Musk wagers he’ll deliver and install them in 100 days or it’s free. [Read more…]

Footnotes

  1. Later corrected to 100MWh

The Billionaire’s Gambit – Why we should politely decline.

 

Note from Finn:

This post is Ronald’s considered opinion of Elon Musk’s offer. My personal opinion (with caveats) is that we should accept the offer. I’ll publish a post later today with my reasoning.


 

Elon Musk has offered to sell South Australia large scale Tesla battery storage of 100 megawatt-hours or more.  He says it will cost $250 US dollars at the “pack level” per kilowatt-hour which is around $333 at today’s exchange rate.  What’s more, he has promised it will be installed within 100 days of the contract being signed or it’s free.

This may be the best offer that has ever been made for large scale lithium battery storage.  But despite the small chance we would get it for free, I think our reply should be a polite, “No thank you.”

South Australia doesn’t need a large amount of battery storage to solve its current electricity supply problems and so there are better alternatives to spend the money on.  If in the future it turns out it would be useful we can get it then and it should be even cheaper. [Read more…]

Tesla Kills Off DC Powerwall 2. AC Powerwall Delayed

powerwall 2 DC is dead

DC’s not pinin! DC’s passed on! This battery system is no more! DC has ceased to be! It has expired and gone to meet its maker! DC’s kicked the bucket! DC has shuffled off its Tesla coil, run down the charge, and joined the bleedin’ choir invisible! THIS IS AN EX-BATTERY!

I was just relaxing by listening to the musical version of the Massacre of Mankind when I suddenly got some news from the solar grapevine1 concerning the Tesla Powerwall 2.  To cut a short story even shorter:

The DC version of the Powerwall 2 is dead!

Long live the AC version!

If it ever gets here!

[Read more…]

Footnotes

  1. All grapevines are technically solar powered if you think about it.

Tesla Powerwall 2 Vs Ampetus Super Lithium

Ironman vs superman

Can Ampetus’ Super Lithium battery beat Elon’s Powerwall 2?

A lot of attention has been paid to the Tesla Powerwall 2 lately on account of how it promises to dramatically cut the cost of home energy storage.  And when I wrote “promises” I chose that word carefully on account of how that’s all we got at the moment.  We won’t know what it’s capable of until next month when Tesla promises the first installations will be done. [Read more…]

Is The Powerwall 2 A Good Investment?

powerwall 2 and piggy bank

Will a grid connected Powerwall 2 beat a term deposit as an investment?

Tesla has announced the impending arrival of the Powerwall 2 at a promised price point that, on the surface, looks very compelling: $10,150 fully installed1, or  23c per warranted kWh.

It seems particularly impressive when you consider that in Sydney and Perth, time-of-use tariffs can go to 50c per kWh during peak periods.

That’s 23c for electricity from a battery vs. 50c for grid electricity. Surely that makes the Powerwall 2 a no-brainer investment for people on such a tariff?

I decided to look a little deeper into the economics of using Australia’s cheapest battery2, on Australia’s highest grid tariffs.  Unfortunately I found that high peak rates are not nearly as good for the economics of the Powerwall 2 as they seem.

Read on to discover why. [Read more…]

Footnotes

  1. Grid connected – no backup
  2. Per warranted kWh, cycled once per day, assuming Tesla keep their word, they have a long record of not delivering on promises.

How many solar panels should you install with a Powerwall 2?

powerwall and solar mix up

Installing more rooftop solar is a better investment than a Powerwall 2, so always rack up as much solar on your roof as you reasonably can first. Unlike this guy.

The Tesla Powerwall 2 is going to be big.  Really big.  I mean that literally and not figuratively.  It’s going to be big as in 13.5 kilowatt-hours of storage big.  From the point of view of most Australian households that is huge.

This large capacity presents households with two main problems:

  1.  It is more than the average Australian household uses at night.
  2. Those that do use that much electricity overnight may not have a rooftop solar system large enough to fully charge it.

So if the average Australian home buys a Powerwall 2 they will use it at less than its full capacity. As Tesla’s warranty is fixed at a maximum of 10 years, this increases the cost of each warranted kilowatt-hour substantially.

The obvious solutions are:

  1. Don’t install a Powerwall 2 unless your household regularly uses 12+ kilowatt-hours of electricity overnight.
  2. Don’t install a Powerwall 2 unless your solar system normally produces enough surplus electricity to fully charge it on a mostly clear day.  Normally this will require at least 5 kilowatts of solar panels.

[Read more…]

Should you go off grid with a Powerwall 2?

 

bloke with powerwall 2 cutting the wires to his house

Thinking of getting a Powerwall 2 and taking yourself off grid? Then you need to read this first.

 

Note from Finn:

Since this post was published Tesla have canned the DC Powerwall 2 in Australia. We will now only be able to get an AC Powerwall 2. A regular AC coupled battery is no good for off grid because it can’t talk to the solar inverter to balance energy demand and supply. So if you live in Australia and want to go off grid do not use a Powerwall 2.


 

 

A long time ago, back in the days before we knew how lame the original Powerwall was compared to its hype or how good the Powerwall 2’s hype is compared to the original Powerwall, I wrote about whether or not my parents in sub-tropical Queensland could save money by going off-grid using lead-acid battery storage.

My conclusion was they could not save money even under almost ideal circumstances.  The benefit of staying on-grid and receiving even a low feed-in tariff for surplus solar electricity was too great to make saying sayonara to the grid connection wire worthwhile. [Read more…]