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Tesla Could Be Changing The Dynamics Of Global Energy


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From OilPrice.com a very straightforward article about Tesla's future coming together in the economy of scale needed to push the energy shift over the top. The article makes clear opportunities for investment in dozens of related field supplying the Gigafactory, and what it makes possible.

 

As recently as this year doubters would say that EVs will never come to the forefront because the batteries make it too expensive, and there are no technology breakthroughs to make bartered cheaper. Now, the very same people, with a straight face are saying the Gigafactory will be obsolete because of technology improvements? They go from no cheap batteries or advancements coming fast enough, to they will be coming faster than Musk can build them? Tesla can't retool? Of course they can. And Musk has been saying that he hopes tech breakthroughs happen as he will jump on any new technology that is better.

 

Let's get to the article.

 

Excerpt:

 

"The unique differentiator here is not necessarily Tesla’s technology. The company certainly has state of the art tech, but what might make battery production feasible is the economies of scale that Tesla is looking to capture in battery production. Tesla’s new gigafactory will be an enormous production facility when it is completed and the facility should be able to produce 50 GWh of annual battery production eventually. This level of production should enable mass production of batteries at a fraction of the current cost.

 

But beyond Tesla, these economies of scale could also have benefits for other firms in the same industry. To the extent that Tesla’s production capabilities create new demand for component parts, the result would be lower costs for inputs in batteries. As supply costs fall, battery production costs across the industry would fall also leading to increased quantity demanded by consumers and businesses.

 

Put differently, when Edison invented the light bulb, the standard method for producing vase shaped glass vessels was very different than what it is today. Producing a vase by traditional glass blowing is expensive and time consuming. So if a person had to make just one or two light bulbs, it would likely take hours of work. Once millions of light bulbs are needed, the process becomes industrialized and the cost per bulb falls to pennies. The same principle applies to the economics of battery production, and that already has even competing producers salivating."

 

The whole article with related links and much more is here: http://oilprice.com/Alternative-Energy/Renewable-Energy/Tesla-Could-Be-Changing-The-Dynamics-Of-Global-Energy.html

 

You see, the Gigafactory will be in production making batteries in 2016, next year. Folk long on Tesla like me know this climb will be the best yet. The changes in the next five years already planned out and being built are seminal. This is fun to watch. To make the economies of scale work faster, he released his patents, free for the world to use, because the others could not catch up alone. Now, suddenly, every car maker promises a 200 mile range EV coming in 2017, give or take. And all of those cars will need batteries, the best and least expensive they can buy. As will all those solar and wind generators need storage both at the consumer level and the large enterprises and factories.

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Yep!

Wait till Thursday and the months following. Remember The Model X as well as the Gigafactory are coming in quick succession followed relatively closely by the Tesla economy model. Can you believe the shorts are increasing? They keep doing the same thing over and over expecting different results. They will get ground in the dirt worse than the last time! I am still holding pat with the house's money, and a lot more than I ever expected. I think w might finally brawl the magic $300, despite having said that twice before. In six months the rest of the market will look over and realize there is a lot more room to profit here. I'm liking it.

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As these announcements were made all along the past five years, and were reported here and elsewhere, most folks were incapable of wrapping their minds around it. Today, they now act surprised when Musk executes another project how, and when, he said he would. Not five years late and over budget.

 

From Fortune.com. Today:

 

Excerpt:

 

"The long and quiet history of Tesla's grid batteries"

 

"It’s an effort that’s five years in the making.

 

By now it’s not really a secret that on Thursday, Tesla Motors will likely show off battery packs that can be paired with solar panels, and plugged into the power grid. But what seems to be lesser known is the long history behind this announcement: That Tesla ( TSLA -0.51% ) has been working on grid batteries for many years now and already has hundreds of systems in operation.

 

About five years ago, in late summer 2010, co-founder and chief technology officer of solar system installer SolarCity Peter Rive—cousin of Tesla CEO Elon Musk—was tinkering with a lead acid battery pack in his garage in San Francisco. That year, the California Public Utilities Commission awarded SolarCity ( SCTY 2.19% ) $1.8 million to study how feasible it was to store energy generated by solar panels on a rooftop in a battery at the base of the building. The grant was meant to deploy and monitor a handful of projects that used Tesla’s batteries combined with solar panels and SolarCity’s monitoring systems.

 

The next year, Tesla began requesting incentives for its energy storage projects from California’s Self-Generation Incentive Program. More than a decade old, the state program is intended to provide funding for emerging distributed energy systems such as fuel cells and advanced energy storage projects. While some of Tesla’s early, small energy storage projects—residential systems—didn’t eventually receive the funding, some of those early commercial-scale projects ended up with funding and were later connected to the power grid.

 

In 2012, I was one of the first to report that Tesla and SolarCity were quietly working on selling both residential and commercial scale building battery systems. At the time, the duo had submitted at least 70 applications for SGIP funding.

 

According to another Bloomberg report from last week, there are now 300 homes in California that have Tesla batteries and SolarCity solar panels. One of the biggest hurdles for these early residential projects was just getting the local utilities to connect the systems to the power grid. Utility companies are naturally slow moving, but the sudden influx of distributed generation and storage caught them off guard. Five hundred customers originally signed up to buy the batteries through the two companies; connection delays at one point in spring 2014 were so bad that SolarCity started publicly complaining about the issues.

 

According to the most recent data available, Tesla has close to a hundred energy storage projects that have requested funding from the 2015 SGIP budget. In contrast to the residential-focused smaller systems from its early partnership with SolarCity, many of the more recent energy storage projects are much larger, up to 1 MW in size, for commercial and government partners. Musk said on Tesla’s earnings call in February that Tesla has already been “bidding on a lot of RFPs [request for proposals],” for utilities looking to build energy storage projects.

 

Utilities are interested in energy storage not just because of the mandate, but also because it can help them avoid building “peaker plants”—expensive and often dirty power plants that are used to push electricity out to the grid when it’s really crucial, such as during a hot summer day when air conditioning is flowing. Batteries can provide this quick electricity push instead. And in the short term, batteries are also being used for other services for utilities, like something called frequency regulation, which maintains grid stability.

 

One of the reasons that batteries are becoming more attractive to utilities, businesses, and even homeowners? Solar energy. Such systems are cheaper than ever before, making the technology accessible and attractive to many more customers, and batteries pair naturally with solar systems, which can generate electricity during the day that can then be stored in a battery and used at night when the sun stops shining. Many of the battery systems that will be deployed in the coming years will be paired with solar systems.

 

Lithium-ion batteries—the kind used by Tesla in its electric cars—are also rapidly declining in cost. Tesla’s battery factory, which is under construction just outside of Reno, is intended to lower the cost of the company’s lithium-ion batteries (made in partnership with Panasonic) by one-third. Historically, lithium-ion batteries have been considered too expensive to be used for a home battery or for the grid. Declining prices alter that calculation."

 

Much more about the "peeked plant" savings, ongoing large and residential projects, and how all of this demand stacks up today. As far as the soon to open Gigafactory? I think that we will see ground broken for a second one before the doubters and naysayers even realize that Tesla is not in the pump and dump category. Pump and produce might be better for them. But then that would involve accepting that they were part of the problem. That article with much is here: http://fortune.com/2015/04/28/tesla-grid-batteries/

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I'm waiting....I'll likely be ready to put some into a casita-type (or tiny home, if you are politically correct) in the next few years....

 

I don't doubt Musk at ALL. He simply continues to quietly "perform". I AM waiting for the landing on the barge, though. It will likely happen soon. He will get it eventually.

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Yeah Jack, just emailed but OBE, you saw this.

 

The beauty of the landing R&D is that he is using paid missions to do it. He launches successful missions to the ISS and soon 100% of US military launches for about three years.

 

Today they lose the millions for the lift rocket stages anyway. He is using capsules close to his manned ones, but once the missions are complete and successful, no private or government agency cares if he crashes every mission's lift stages in the attempted landing of normally jettisoned launch vehicles. His R&D costs zip!

 

For the record I'm going to look into the water collection and filtering here too. My solar will be determined by whether we decide to stay or sell the soon much improved property and move to Colorado. BTW did you hear about the Tesla model S raffle for a great charity in Denver?

https://www.messnerfoundation.org/

 

I now am ticket number 379. Add that to my $100.00 deposit on my as yet to go into production Elio. BTW, despite not being tax deductible, and my not being a gambler, I also buy one $100.00 Ticket to the St Jude House raffle and the house for hope other $100.00 house raffle here every year. Both of those limit their tickets to 5000 each too. Hey, it's for charities I agree to support. I don't have a chance to win anything with my other deductible charities. Anyway the Tesla being raffled has all the specs I want on one.

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Derek, where are you looking in CO? I'm in Woodland Park....just up from CO Springs.Great location.

 

You are in a perfect location for collecting rain water. You would never have to pull from your well again :) And you could use a smaller pump and run it all from solar. Pretty easily. There is cost, though. Need a good sized storage tank, and filters, and UV. SO it is not something to do on a "whim"....you have to figure out if it is worth it to you to be truly independent. Your well may suffice, but as you know it is subject to a LOT of pollution in your area (and that applies to many other areas, as well).

 

BTW, CO has one of the most restrictive rainwater capture laws in the country. You can do NOTHING with water that falls from the sky. At best you can divert a gutter to a landscaped area, but you cannot capture or impede water in any fashion. It is all "owned" by the state - from the clouds down. At least AZ lets you capture from a roof.

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Hey Jack,

we are on city water and all but sewage, For that I have a 500 gallon or so two compartment holding tank, an iron and SS bladed macerator pump, and 300 feet of PVC going to an Oxidation pond that is great! No odors even next to it. But it isn't close to the house. Water, Gas, Cable, Electric all city. They are laying in sewer service this year. Miles of lift pumps into town.

 

We may not move up there, that depends on how we feel when not needed here anymore. The property is sold to the neighbor of we do for any reasonable price so he can own adjacent five acre lots to build a family compound on. Bur we might decide this is the place to stay if my back surgery doesn't allow me to get back in tip top.

 

Do I know Woodland Park??? I taught at the AF Academy 1978-81! Our Academy campground recreation area is out in Woodland Park area behind the front of the front range. Gorgeous there. http://www.militarycampgrounds.us/colorado/farish-recreation-area We used to camp in winter with our VW pop up campers and later our Coleman popup with our then new 78 Subaru brat with camper shell. We also stayed at the RV park on the Academy off perimeter drive several times while full timing on the way back home for the winter. We have good friends in Upper Black forest who originally had a five acre tract right in front of the Academy gate which is now a shopping center. We caught a lot of Brookies in the little lake there. I also loved the Jefferson Park lake Jefferson midway between Denver and the Manitou pass going the back way. Have you been there yet? Beaver ponds and warm in summer but the lake is an alpine lake and it is snowed in until July and the drifts stay under the pines year round. I caught the biggest and only rainbow there. We had little stocked ponds on base too.

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Back to the topic Jack, another thread reminded me of the emerging and varied micro grid hardware and solutions coming out like here: http://energy.gov/articles/how-microgrids-work have you seen these yet anywhere in operation? I've just read about them, but they look very interesting for communities and like the community networks threatens technology that is holding back lots of better ways to do biz and interact. What if the gas companies put a tariff of new fangled light bulbs or GE fought in court against LED lighting. Or to go the other way, I find it disgusting that the auto dealers try to stop EVs being sold direct to the customer. Same with some of the grid politics by money. Their business models are gone, kaput, and will hang around for a couple to three decades before they cvan't milk it for any more except from poor folks who have the last of the fossil burners.

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