Tesla Powerwall vs. AGL’s PowerLegato

So AGL have thrown their hat into the solar battery storage ring with the AUO PowerLegato manufactured by Taiwanese Solar and Electronic conglomerate, AU Optronics.

So how do they compare on specs?

a powerwall and a powerlegato

Tesla Powerwall Daily Cycle Model
AU$3,800 (wholesale price, not installed)
3.3 kW
single or 3 phase
no inverter included
no UPS features included
10 year Warranty
92% round-trip DC efficiency
350 – 450 volts
Operating Temp: -20°C to 43°C
1300 x 860 x 180mm
AGL/AUO PowerLegato
AU$9,990 fully installed on an existing DC solar system (updated 8 July)
3kW continuous, 4.5kW peak
single phase only
4.5kW PV Inverter included
UPS feature built in
unknown warranty
unknown round-trip DC efficiency
48 volts
Operating Temp: -20°C to 40°C
[Read more…]

The cheap & cheerful way to add a Tesla Powerwall to your exisiting solar system?

a powerwall on a wall

What might be the cheapest way to install a Tesla Powerwall + solar?

[Note: This blog post is an educated guess on how the Tesla Powerwall might work based on stuff Elon Musk has publicly said and the press section of their website. So bear that in mind if making any decisions based on this post. Tesla have released sketchy and often contradictory technical details about the Powerwall, so it is impossible to be sure how the thing will work or integrate into an existing system. I’ve tried asking Tesla US and Tesla Australia for clarification, but with no luck.]

Since Tesla announced their low cost home battery, many solar installers have been looking for the cheapest way to integrate one into your home’s electrical system.

This has led to the emergence of a whole new category of residential solar system, that had never really been considered here in Australia before the Tesla announcement – the not-very-catchy “Hybrid Solar Without Backup” system.

This is a system which, to save thousands of dollars on the install, removes the ability for the batteries to power your home if the grid goes down. The batteries are only used to store solar energy. They cannot be used in an outage. [Read more…]

Powerwall Vs. Lead Acid Batteries. Which is best for off grid?

powerwall and a lead acid battery

Does the Powerwall make sense for off grid applications?

I recently wrote about how my parents could save money by going off-grid in sub-tropical Queensland under close to best case conditions, and how it made no sense at all for them to do this as the return from having grid connected rooftop solar is so much better.

The recently announced Tesla Powerwall doesn’t change this. However, it will still be a very useful option for people who have no choice other than to live off grid, and for those who want to go off grid for non-economic reasons. It has a number of advantages over currently used lead-acid batteries, and in my opinion, for many applications the Powerwall knocks lead-acid batteries into a cocked hat, which will soon be squashed very flat, as lead-acid batteries are really heavy. [Read more…]

Tesla’s Powerwall solar battery: Revolutionary? A damp squib? Or somewhere in between?

Will the Powerwall change everything?

Will the Powerwall change everything?

Well the release of Tesla’s Powerwall solar battery this week really made waves didn’t it? At a glittering announcement, the company launched the much-lauded new generation in clean energy storage with the type of glitz and glamour unseen since Barack and Michelle first pulled on a boot.

The battery, which as its name suggests may be installed on the wall of a house, is available in either a ten or seven kilowatt hour capacity at a cost of either $US3500 or $US3000. The Powerwall will be available in the northern hemisphere summer and pre orders are now being taken according to the company. [Read more…]

Will The Tesla PowerWall let you go off grid for $3500 ?

tesla powerwall

Will the Tesla Battery lead to a stampede of people leaving the grid? Photo: Tesla

[Update: Since I wrote this post (on the day the Powerwall was announced) Tesla have added some technical details that open up the possibility of installing the Powerwall for a much lower price than this blog post estimates. But – and it’s a big but – the cheaper installation will not allow you to go off grid. More details on the alternative install option here]


So Tesla has just announced a 10kWh home battery pack that costs US$3,500 (AUD$4,500) . The Tesla PowerWall will mount unobtrusively on the wall of your home and store your solar energy, so you can use it at night or when the grid goes down.

Lots of twitterers are proclaiming that Renewable Energy utopia has arrived. You’d be forgiven from thinking that, thanks to Tesla founder Elon Musk, all we have to do to divorce the grid is shell out three and a half grand.

Look – I don’t want to piss on anyone’s parade. This announcement is massive in lots of ways which I’ll get to soon. But you won’t be able to go off grid for that kind of money (yet).

Here’s what Aussie homeowners should know about the Telsa Powerwall [Read more…]

Tesla to shake up solar battery storage

tesla battery

The Tesla Model S battery shown here is coming to your house. (pic: cool-electric-cars.com)

Solar energy’s Great Leap Forward in efficiency and viability is about to be joined by its natural twin, solar battery storage.

This scenario, which was hinted at by electric car manufacturer Tesla during the week, will reverberate around the energy community and send shudders down the collective spines of fossil fuel providers and their defenders in the halls of power. [Read more…]