Tesla’s Elon Musk confirms Powerwall 2.0 is on the way

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PV Magazine

Tesla_Powerwall_a2eb919391Elon Musk has confirmed Tesla will bring out a new version of its Powerwall home energy storage battery system this summer. While “step changes” can be expected, he declined to elaborate on the new product.

At a private event for Tesla car owners held in Paris last Friday, Tesla CEO, Elon Musk announced the second version should reach the market around this July or August.

“The Tesla Powerwall and Powerpack – we have a lot of trials underway right now around the world … seen very good results,” he told the audience. “We’re expecting to come out with version two of the Powerwall probably around July, August this year, which will see further step changes hopefully.”

He did not elaborate on what the step changes may be, but there has been plenty of speculation. Some sources state, for instance, that the new Powerwall will be designed to use Gigafactory batteries.

In a Q3 shareholder letter, issued last November 3, Tesla said construction and production were ahead of schedule at the five million square foot factory, located in Nevada, with the first cells expected to be produced there at the end of this year, “several quarters” ahead of the initial plan. Overall, it is expected to reach annual production of 35 GWh by 2020.

Tesla has seen demand for its home battery solutions surge, with the result that following the announcement of the Powerwall last April 30, the company received reservations totaling around US$800 million, according to Bloomberg Business, or for 38,000 systems. As such, the system is said to be sold out until at least mid-2016.

Demand for Tesla’s storage products is said to be particularly strong in Australia, Germany and South Africa. Last month, Queensland saw the first Tesla Powerwall home battery switched on in Australia under Energex’s battery storage trial. Meanwhile, Germany-based SMA announced, also last month, the launch of the Sunny Boy Storage inverter for end users. It is said to be the first AC-coupled system for high voltage batteries, like the Tesla Powerwall.

Source: PV Magazine. Reproduced with permission.  

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  • john

    Strange I made a comment 30 mins ago and is gone
    I think version 2 the Powerwall will be 5 kw demand and 14 KwH power supply

  • trackdaze

    I expect Tesla know how to manage the Osbourne effect better than Osbourne computers did.

  • humanitarian solar

    So we’re adding another AC coupled inverter to the first grid-connect inverter? instead of just buying one conventional inverter/charger? All this to establish compatibility for the current grid-connect systems, so they don’t have to change anything? If so sounds complex, many pieces of equipment. People starting from the beginning may wish to get a simpler solar system with the minimum number of components.
    Additionally since the powerwall is a high voltage battery, I guess that isn’t going to work for current off grid people with lower voltage inverter/chargers who are seeking to replace old gen battery banks?

    • Ian

      You’ve nailed the problem. Storage integration into a household’s electricity supply is not as simple as pressing two Lego pieces together. There are lots of gizmos between solar panel, battery and electrical appliance. That is the rub. It’s the connecting pieces that make solar storage extra expensive. Australia may not be the fertile ground for Tesla as they hope. Compatibility, cost, upgradability, and interchangeability is what we want. Many people will look at the flawed first offerings of storage and say maybe I’ll buy at tesla 4.0 or the cheaper chinese equivalent. The only incentives to buy the first iteration of the Powerwall would be subsidy driven, such as the various pilot schemes, extreme annoyance with the utilites , and economically driven by rural or remote dwellings.

      • humanitarian solar

        I think one big problem with the Australian market is people who may wish to go off grid later or are fringe of grid. That’s if Tesla’s powerwall is mainly designed to work around a single AC source, a grid. Because the Americans have a higher density grid, they may not have thought of this issue. Is this the first hybrid or off-grid inverters that Tesla’s partners have made? They seem to be trying to convert everyone to their high voltage battery, when they haven’t exactly got many runs on the board. How do we know the system architecture actually makes sense? I’d really like to hear about installs and who it works well for.

  • humanitarian solar

    And how many AC sources can this new breed of AC coupled inverters manage? Say we want to start with the grid, then when we size up our PV we want to disconnect the wires from the grid and instead connect a generator and wind turbine. Can the new breed enable us to do that? How much do you want to bet its all designed to work with one AC source, a grid, and thats it?

  • humanitarian solar
    here is a lithium battery, in modules, that can work with All micro inverters and string inverters. No need to be concerned if you don’t have a compatible grid connect inverter. Since its not a high voltage battery, perhaps it will work in to replace other battery banks as well? Need to be an expert to keep up with all the emerging compatibility issues. When manufacturers say plug and play, apparently they mean with their products.

  • humanitarian solar

    Tesla appears using the market as guinea pigs, like with their sports cars, now their batteries for houses etc. How many updates to specs this time? Like a computer company putting out a new software platform. We all go will this one be a dud or a good one? Only this time we’re not talking software, we’re talking hardware. To me an inverter is a computer that is designed to be a power control system. How many different operating voltages does the market need? When will we begin to standardise cords etc instead of trying to captivate our own market? Do we really care about the environment or do we want to create expensive landfill?

  • humanitarian solar

    Here’s a link to Solar Edges website with their inverters for the powerwall. I’m not sure if Im reading this right, though looks like there is a minimum nominal input voltage of 350V. Wouldn’t that need a hell of a lot of 24V solar panels in series to achieve that? Does this mean its mainly designed for big rooftops? They have a device called a power optimiser that looks like it can add an MPPT to each solar panel or be bought with their solar panels. I guess if there is an MPPT per solar panel, then solar panels could be in theory located on different roof pitches and orientation, hence if the customer didn’t have one roof big enough, perhaps all their NE, NW and N roofs would achieve the number of panels in series to drive the inverter? Wouldn’t that be 350V divided by 24V = 14.6 solar panels in series? And we wouldn’t want to wait for the sun to get up there in the sky before system startup, so wouldn’t that mean we would need in excess of 15 x 24V solar panels? Sounds like allot? I hope the Americans haven’t designed it exclusively around big houses?

  • humanitarian solar

    I’ve found a comparison by Finn Peacock of the powerwall and the enphase battery. Fantastic work Finn!!!!

    • weezmgk

      The two batteries are chalk & cheese, particularly when output power is considered.