May 1

Elon Musk for President! The New Tesla PowerWall

tesla-powerwall-2Just in case you’ve been living under a rock for the last 24 hours, Elon Musk has introduced what was probably the worst-kept secret in the energy business, the new Tesla PowerWall home battery system. Mr. Musk has often stated that Tesla isn’t in the automobile business, it’s in the battery business. Now, he’s putting his money where his mouth is.

tesla-powerwallThe PowerWall isn’t really a new product category; people have been charging batteries with solar power for decades to power their homes. What’s new is the rapidly-advancing battery technology that Tesla is bringing to the market. The PowerWall battery is designed to be installed simply, effortless to use, and maintenance-free. With enough juice to power an entire home during peak hours when there’s no sunshine (nighttime, in other words) the PowerWall looks to be an affordable entry to off-grid living for a much larger portion of the public than any other type of battery storage system that’s come before it. I mean, look at it: it’s beautiful. Does that look like a big expensive closet full of batteries to you?

Why am I excited about this? Because I have a dream. In my dream, my home’s roof is covered with solar panels creating lots of power during the day. Most solar systems today take that energy and send it to the power grid, where the power company pays for it. The user then buys that power back from the utility at night when it’s needed, and hopefully the economics works out in the homeowners’s favor, or at the very least results in extremely low energy bills.

Screw that. I mean, it’s a great system for what it is. It eliminates the hassle and cost of a large battery bank that would be needed for the home to be totally off-grid. That is, until the Tesla PowerWall came along. Now, for a relatively affordable price (around $3500) a homeowner can install a PowerWall (inside or outside) and effortlessly begin storing the day’s solar energy for use later. No need to wheel and deal with the power company.

That’s part of my dream: The day I can call the power company and tell them their services are no longer needed, that I’m making all the power I need right at home, thank you very much. I firmly believe this is the future: a much more decentralized power system, where the majority of homes (and businesses) are able to create their own energy on-site, using nothing but the sun, the wind, and a powerful battery like the Tesla PowerWall.

Like the revolutionary electric automobiles they produce, Tesla looks to be thrusting renewable home energy production right into the mainstream in a big big way. (Speaking of Tesla cars, that’s the Tesla S pictured at the top along with its charger and the new PowerWall. If you buy a PowerWall, the car’s not included. Bummer.)

As soon as solar leasing companies come to Michigan (and they are coming,) I’m hoping to be among the first in line to let that big ol’ sun make the majority, if not all, of the electricity my family uses.

I wrote a little bit more about the Tesla PowerWall over at Green Home Source HERE, including specifications. This thing is pretty sweet.

Speaking of the sun, it’s too nice outside right now to be sitting inside typing on the computer, so I’m outta here. Peace.

Bonus Friday Song!

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Posted May 1, 2015 by in category "Environment", "Green Living

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