By Melissa Keogh
In a landmark moment for South Australia’s renewable energy sector, the world’s largest lithium ion battery has been switched on near Jamestown in the Mid North.
Premier Jay Weatherill today launched the giant 100-megawatt battery at the Hornsdale Power Reserve, labelling the project as “history in the making”.
The array of Telsa Powerpack batteries, connected to the nearby Neoen Hornsdale windfarm, are now delivering power to the National Energy Market.
The battery’s operation means that wind energy is dispatched to the grid 24/7, improving the state’s energy security.
It’s able to produce enough energy to power about 30,000 homes for more than an hour.
In March 2017 the State Government announced its Energy Plan, which included building the big battery to store renewable energy and supply back up power.
In July, French renewable company Neoen along with Tesla were awarded the contract to carry out the task.
The project was completed well ahead of Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s “100 days or it’s free” deadline, which he declared via a Twitter exchange.
Tesla will get the system installed and working 100 days from contract signature or it is free. That serious enough for you?
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 10, 2017
Mr Weatherill says SA is now leading the world in dispatchable renewable energy that is delivered to homes and businesses around the clock.
“I want to express my gratitude to the workers who have constructed this battery – they have every right to be proud of what they’ve constructed,” he says.
The big battery launch was attended by Neoen deputy CEO Romain Desrousseaux who says projects such as these contribute to SA leading the way with clean energy.
“Neoen is pleased to be able to reinforce its Australian footprint through the achievement of the Hornsdale wind farm and battery and is extremely proud to contribute further to the development of renewable energy in Australia,” he says.