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Tesla Big Battery in Australia Pays for itself in 2.5 Years with Huge Profit

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The Tesla big battery in South Australia, which is officially known as the Hornsdale Power Reserve, delivered a windfall profit to its Paris-based owner Neoen in the first half of 2020. Tesla's battery paid itself in 2.5 years.

Tesla's "Hornsdale battery, along with another Tesla battery at Lake Bonney and the Dalrymple North battery, were asked to play a key role stabilizing the South Australia grid during the 17 days that the state was “isolated” from the rest of the main grid, and it reaped a huge bonus in revenue and profits in return, reports Giles Parkinson in Renew Economy.

Reporting its first-half 2020 results Neoen says, "Revenue also benefited from excellent wind conditions in Europe during the first quarter of 2020.
These factors more than offset the lower availability of Australian assets in the second quarter, as well as a lower average price earned by the Hornsdale 3 wind farm in Australia compared with the first half of 2019. This asset had temporarily benefited from early generation revenue prior to the entry into force of its longterm power purchase agreement in October 2019."

"The windfall returns from the latest half means that the Hornsdale battery has delivered total earnings (EBITDA) in it first two and a half years of operation of €54.4 million, which translates to $A88 million – for a battery that cost a little over $A90 million," Gilles says based on Neoen's media release.

In 2017, Elon Musk set up a system for the Hornsdale wind farm in Australia to store its electricity using lithium-ion batteries.

Installed in less than a hundred days for 90 million Australian dollars [56 million euros], the Hornsdale Power Reserve was intended to help the French operator Neoen to respond to a shortage of electricity caused by a storm.

According to the latter, the project has since saved 150 million Australian dollars [93 million euros] to its customers.

For three years, Tesla's “big battery” has been the world's most powerful lithium-ion battery energy storage system. On September 2, its power was further increased by 50%, bringing its total storage capacity to 150 megawatts.

Armen Hareyan is the founder and the Editor in Chief of Torque News. He founded TorqueNews.com in 2010, which since then has been publishing expert news and analysis about the automotive industry. He can be reached at Torque News Twitter, Facebok, Linkedin and Youtube.