The worst kept secret in the world is that Tesla storage battery will be revealed officially on April 30. What isn’t widely known is that the company has been quietly testing its batteries in more than 300 homes and many business for several years, according to Fortune.
In fact, Tesla storage batteries already power eleven Walmart stores around the country, reports Bloomberg. Food processing company Cargill is also reportedly testing the Tesla storage battery. Schools and wineries are on Elon Musk’s list of places to use the new technology as well. The knowledge gained from all that testing will go into making production versions of the Tesla storage battery as efficient and trouble free as possible.
Storage batteries can be used anywhere electric power is needed. They can take over in the event of a power outage to keep homes and business running as usual. They can be recharged at night when electric rates are lowest and used to provide power during the day when rates are at their peak. They can be recharged from the electric grid, from onsite generators, from solar panels or wind turbines.
The secret to any battery storage system is the inverter. Electricity coming in from the pole is in the form of alternating current. But batteries, solar panels and wind turbines operate on direct current. An inverter converts AC to DC and vice versa so everything in the system works seamlessly together.
Jeffery Evanson, Tesla’s head of investor relations head told Business Insider recently that the announcement expected on Thursday would be about a “Tesla home battery and a very large utility scale battery.” Utility scale batteries allow electric companies to even out the demand curve for power, which will save them money.
It costs electric companies a lot of money to ramp up their electricity output to meet the surge in demand that occurs every day when people get home from work, crank up the AC, turn on the computer and fire up the stove. Using batteries will allow utilities to meet that demand in a more cost effective way, saving them money and allowing them to avoid raising the rates they charge for electricity.
Just whispering the word “Tesla” can make a stock analyst swoon. Andrea James, an analyst with Dougherty & Co, told Bloomberg, “Tesla’s energy storage business could be worth as much as $70 to Tesla’s stock.” If you believe that, you should be on the phone to your broker as soon as you finish this story.