Energy Storage

30 Jul 2020

PG&E, Tesla Start Building World’s Biggest Battery

30 Jul 2020  by TIM SYLVIA   

The 182.5 MW/730 MWh Moss Landing energy storage system could eventually be expanded to 1.1 GWh – putting it on track to overshadow Tesla’s massive Hornsdale project in Australia.

Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) and Tesla have started construction on a battery storage project in Monterey County, California, that could end up being one of the biggest installations in the world.

The 182.5 MW/730 MWh storage system will feature 256 Tesla Megapack battery units on 33 concrete slabs at PG&E’s electric substation in Moss Landing, California. The project is scheduled for completion is set for early 2021, with full commercial operation set for the second quarter of next year.

The project marks just the first step in PG&E’s huge battery storage project pipeline. In fact, the Tesla battery bank might not even be the biggest one to be built at the Moss Landing substation, as PG&E has already signed a contract for a 300 MW storage system at the same site, with 1.2 GWh of planned capacity. While this second system is set to be significantly larger than the Tesla one now under construction, PG&E’s deal with Tesla includes an option to upsize to 1.1 GWh in total.

PG&E also has third-party contracts for a 75 MW transmission-connected project near Morgan Hill, California, as well as a 2 MW project at the Gonzales substation in the Salinas Valley. In addition, the utility owns a 20 MW battery system at the Llagas substation in Gilroy, California.

As familiar as PG&E is with large-scale battery energy storage projects, Tesla may be even more so. The world’s largest operating battery storage system, the Hornsdale Power Reserve in South Australia, features Tesla batteries and is colloquially known as the Tesla Big Battery.

The project initially had a capacity of 100MW/129MWh, but has since been expanded and is now rated at 150 MW/193.5 MWh. If the Moss Landing battery project is completed on time, that means that the two largest lithium-ion storage projects on the planet will be utilizing Tesla batteries – and it’s not like the competition is particularly close, either.

As much disparity as there is on this list right now, it’s set to look entirely different in just a short time. In addition to the Moss Landing battery project, there are a number of 100 MW storage projects being developed across the United States. There is also a project that will blow even the second Moss Landing installation out of the water – the massive 409 MW Florida Power and Light Manatee project.


More News