Like most Tesla events, speculation and hype were at all-time highs after CEO Elon Musk hinted that something “very insane” would be revealed. He was not far off! Tesla detailed a completely new cell, along with plans to improve manufacturing, costs and shrink the battery supply chain. With such bold claims come many questions.
The latest edition of the World Nuclear Industry Status Report indicates the stagnation of the sector continues. Just 2.4 GW of new nuclear generation capacity came online last year, compared to 98 GW of solar. The world’s operational nuclear power capacity had declined by 2.1%, to 362 GW, at the end of June.
The tech giant has eliminated its entire carbon legacy and is moving toward running entirely on renewables, 24/7. More importantly, it’s looking to create pathways for other renewable purchasers to follow in its wake.
The utility-scale solar pioneer and specialist is going small. After decades of avoiding distributed generation, its distributors will now offer First Solar’s series 6 modules to “projects and customers of all shapes and sizes.”
Solar curtailment might become a valuable aspect of future PV deployment, particularly if grid operators start focusing on ‘curtailment management’ instead of ‘curtailment prevention.’ Management would include measures such as flexible generation, storage, load flexibility, and regional coordination.
It’s a title that is becoming more contentious by the day, but for the time being, LS Power’s 250 MW Gateway project in San Diego, California, is the biggest storage battery in the world.
Analyst IHS Markit has predicted storage will rebound this year following its first year-on-year decline in 2019. The technology is being rolled out at pace despite Covid-19 with state-level policies set to keep the US the global capital for the next five years.
Big batteries derive most their value from replacing gas peaker plants and averting the installation of excessive amounts of transmission and generation infrastructure. However, batteries cannot replace all gas plants, MIT researchers found. From a holistic economics perspective, there is a certain share of storage that is considered cost-efficient. With battery costs declining, that share is constantly increasing.
A permit to expand Vistra’s natural gas-fired Moss Landing generation station to 1,500 MW/6,000 MWh has been approved, setting the stage for the world to see gigawatt-scale battery energy storage for the first time ever.
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