Apple will use Tesla’s ‘megapack’ batteries at its California photo voltaic farm

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Apple introduced Wednesday that it’s constructing a giant battery storage mission at a Northern California photo voltaic farm it spearhead in 2015. But what the corporate didn’t share is that the battery packs will come from Tesla, The Verge has realized.

The newly-announced setup, which is able to retailer as much as 240 megawatt-hours of power, was authorized by the Monterey County Board of Supervisors in 2020, in keeping with paperwork submitted final 12 months. It will include 85 Tesla lithium-ion “megapacks” and be used to assist energy the corporate’s company headquarters in Cupertino. Monterey County’s planning chief confirmed that Apple will use the Tesla batteries in an e mail to The Verge. Apple declined to remark. Tesla didn’t reply to a request for remark.

Tesla first introduced the megapack battery system again in 2019. The 60MW storage setup Apple will likely be utilizing isn’t Tesla’s largest, although. The firm has constructed larger general battery storage options in Australia and south of Houston, Texas of round 100MW in dimension. Still, Apple touted it as “one of the largest battery projects in the country” in a press launch, saying the battery system may energy greater than 7,000 houses for an entire day. The Tesla batteries will make it potential for Apple to retailer power generated by its 130-megawatt photo voltaic array on the farm, which is named California Flats.

“The challenge with clean energy — solar and wind — is that it’s by definition intermittent,” Apple VP Lisa Jackson informed Reuters on Wednesday. “If we can do it, and we can show that it works for us, it takes away the concerns about intermittency and it helps the grid in terms of stabilization. It’s something that can be imitated or built upon by other companies.”

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While Apple makes use of lithium-ion batteries in a lot of its merchandise, it’s not identified to be engaged on any grid-scale initiatives. The firm is reportedly creating a lithium iron phosphate battery for its electrical automotive mission, although.

Apple and Tesla don’t have a lot overlapping historical past, although every firm is infamous for poaching expertise from the opposite. Tesla CEO Elon Musk additionally stated in December that he tried to pitch the concept of Apple shopping for his firm again in 2018, however that Apple CEO Tim Cook “refused” to take the assembly.

Tesla is finest identified for its electrical automobiles, however it’s spent years making an attempt to construct up an power storage enterprise to go with the photo voltaic merchandise it acquired when it purchased Solar City. It has gotten more and more concerned in large-scale power storage initiatives like Apple’s through the years along with its dwelling battery enterprise.

While it’s nonetheless modest in comparison with the billions of {dollars} generated by Tesla’s automotive enterprise, the power storage division’s merchandise has already netted a minimum of one different unusual bedfellow buyer: in 2019, Volkswagen introduced it was utilizing Tesla batteries at a few of its Electrify America charging stations.