Tesla patent application outlines design to scale battery systems to 1 GWh
Tesla has filed a patent application that aims to make battery storage more flexible and scalable, Electrek reports.
Larger battery installations are often arranged in parallel, but that can limit scalability because voltage characteristics have to be precisely matched, according to the patent application.
- Tesla’s patent proposes galvanically isolating small blocks of cells that can then be arranged in parallel, allowing different types of cells to be used in the same field to build a battery system of up to 1 GWh.
Tesla is beginning to deploy large battery systems. The company is providing the batteries for the build-out of Advanced Microgrid Solutions’ recently financed 50 MW installation. And the company recently began operation of an 80 MWh installation for Southern California Edison.
The technology in Tesla new patent application could help the company scale its Powerpack 2 battery to even larger applications. According to the patent, the technology would allow the company to build battery systems that could use battery cells of different types, ages, voltages or chemistries.
Tesla’s patent gives an example of batteries with a cumulative capacity of 1 GWh or more comprising cells with different characteristics but with common power electronics interface. That could enable the cells to all be failure independent and eliminate or reduce failure propagation.
Electrek notes that Tesla's not built anything close to 1 GWh of duration yet, but the patent application could be a sign of things to come.
Long-duration batteries are expected to be critical for electricity sector decarbonization, enhancing grid operations and allowing for the storage of renewable generation to be discharged during peak demand hours. A boom in construction of such facilities last year helped propel the U.S. storage industry to a record year, topping 300 MWh in additions.
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