Tesla Megapack, courtesy of Tesla Inc.
Nicolas Caballero's picture

Tesla Cyber Rodeo Coming To Gigafactory Texas, Large Megapack Included As Energy Backup

The official opening for mass media and social media of the Texas Gigafactory in Austin will not be called Giga Fest (like in Giga Berlin), but "Cyber Rodeo". Once again a wink is made to the local culture, in this case with two elements: Cyber in allusion to the style of the future electric pick-up truck that will be manufactured in the Lone Star State, and Rodeo in reference to the Texan traditional cowboy culture.
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The date is already widely known, April 7th, after clearing the way at administrative levels and once the reluctance of local lobby groups that don't necessarily like Elon Musk or Tesla so much has been finally overcome. The guests will most surely have already received by email more details about the call by this time, with further information. Perhaps Cyber Rodeo has to do with a physical appearance of the Cybertruck; I assume this time it will surely hold the shielded glass when hit with a metal ball or hammer.

Later on, the factory's serial, ramp up work will begin, as has happened with the Berlin Gigafactory in Grunheide, Germany. First came the Giga Fest in October 2021, and some time later the actual start of production, March 2022. Things in Texas will not necessarily be delayed so much, because what happened to Tesla in Germany and all the Berlin-Brandenburg permission nightmare was not very normal, to say the least.

Gigafactory Berlin, courtesy of Tesla Inc.

Within a week we will be able to tell more about the production of 4680 structural cells or the new version of the Tesla Model Y, approved by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), with medium autonomy (280 miles km) and with all-wheel drive. As a reference, the Model Y RWD SR has a 244-mile range, and the Model Y Long Range 330 miles.

Tesla Model Y, Courtesy of Tesla Inc.

Regarding the factory itself, Tesla is apparently starting to install solar panels on the roof of the factory - there are drones constantly flying by – and it is stated that they also may form the word “TESLA” so that it can be seen from the air. We have also learned that Tesla is taking action against potential power outages: Texas has its own electrical grid system, and is actually not very well interconnected with other neighboring states, a situation that caused some drawbacks in the past.

As an example we can mention what happened a year ago when a cold wave disabled several gas thermal plants: there were many, many local homes and businesses without energy supply for several days, and to top it off, wild price increases. In order to mitigate this potential issues there is a Tesla Megapack installation project called “GIGA TEXAS LCRA PERMANENT SWITCHYARD & BESS”; where BESS stands for Battery Energy Storage System. The authorization request was registered on Friday March 25th 2022, as stated on the website Tesla Owners Online.

Megapack, courtesy of Tesla Inc.

This Megapack will maximize the use of photovoltaic energy and provide back up power for a few hours in the event of a blackout. We don't know exactly how much capacity and power the Megapack will have, but it is known that it will occupy a total of 215,576 square meters. It is worth noticing that Tesla registered months ago as an energy distribution-utility company, so it can take advantage of this fact in order to sell its energy surplus and by the way contribute to the stability of the Texas energy grid.

All images courtesy of Tesla Inc.

Nico Caballero is the VP of Finance of Cogency Power, specializing in solar energy. He also holds a Diploma in Electric Cars from Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands, and enjoys doing research about Tesla and EV batteries. He can be reached at @NicoTorqueNews on Twitter. Nico covers Tesla and electric vehicle latest happenings at Torque News.


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