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Tesla Megapack: Largest Backup Battery System In Europe Has Just Been Activated

A few hours ago a new stationary battery installation was connected to the grid: a facility located in the British town of Cottingham, near Hull, which uses Tesla batteries in the largest project of its kind launched so far in Europe.


The installation has been developed by Harmony Energy, a renewable energy company, using a full set of Tesla Megapacks; its official launch has been brought forward by four months as compared to the initial plans, due to the threat of a severe winter coming, where the current energy crisis basically threatens both supply and prices.

The battery park has a total of 78 Tesla Megapacks, which have a maximum power of 98 MW and 196 MWh capacity; figures that according to the team responsible for the project, will allow it to serve a population of 300,000 inhabitants for two hours in a row. Its deployment has been strategic since it has been built next to the National Grid's Creyke Beck substation, which will in turn be connected to Dogger Bank - the largest offshore wind farm in the world - which will have a 3.6 GW installed capacity and will be able to provide for the electrical needs of 6 million people, once completed by 2030.

Megapack, courtesy of Tesla Inc.

According to Peter Kavanagh, Director of Harmony Energy, “… battery energy storage systems are essential to unlocking the full potential of renewable energy in the UK. These projects are not supported by taxpayer subsidy yet can offer shareholders attractive returns in a variety of market conditions, and will play an important role in contributing to the transition to zero emissions, as well as ensuring the future security of the UK's energy supply and reducing dependency on foreign gas imports".

He also stated that "… the completion and energisation of the Pillswood project is a significant milestone for the Company, being the first of the portfolio to be energised. All stakeholders have recognised the importance of achieving energisation for this project ahead of winter to ensure the BESS services can be provided during the initial winter months, and we would like to thank Tesla, G2 Energy and Northern Powergrid for their efforts in delivering the project ahead of schedule despite a very challenging geopolitical and global supply chain environment".

The system will use Tesla's artificial intelligence software "Autobidder" to match energy supply and demand, thereby maximizing production from renewables, and by the way reducing reliance on fossil fuels such as gas and coal.

This is by all means a huge battery park that in fact will be the largest in Europe, but which actually pales when compared to the Melbourne Renewable Energy Hub (MREH) project, which is aimed at building a mega-plant in northern Australia that will consist of deploying a 1,200 MW and 2,400 MWh battery park; enough - if we extrapolate the data from the British project - to feed energy to 3.6 million people for two hours, and which by the way will also serve another client, the city-state of Singapore, located more than 1,300 miles away.

Megapack, courtesy of Tesla Inc.

Harmony Energy itself has confirmed that it is already working on up to five additional battery energy storage systems, which will come into operation between December 2022 and October 2023, and which will increase the power and capacity installed by the company to 500 MW and 1 Gwh. In Mr. Kavanagh´s exact words, " addition to the Pillswood project, Harmony Energy Income Trust has five battery energy storage systems under construction with energisation dates between now and October 2023 and three new pipeline projects which when acquired, will increase its overall portfolio to nine projects with a total capacity of c.500MW / 1GWh".


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.