On Tuesday, November 22, 2016, Tesla and SolarCity released a video highlighting what can only be described as a phenomenally successful proof of concept. In American Samoa, the Tau Microgrid is providing power from solar for every home on the island!
This is nothing short of ground shaking. To explain why, here are the reasons this location was chosen. The island:
- Uses multiple diesel generators
- 1 generator alone burns 300 gallons of fuel per day
- 109,500 gallons of fuel per year
- Plus the diesel has to get to the island then to the generators
Clearly, this is an expensive way to deliver electricity. Tesla and SolarCity addressed this environmental and fiscal problem by installing 5,328 solar panels along with 60 Tesla Powerpacks (think of them as industrial Powerwalls).
Let’s take a quick pause at this point before we drop the hammer. People have been using solar panels for decades. No one really questions that electricity can be generated by solar panels. The issue is how practical it is for everyday purposes.
Now, let’s get to the good stuff.
With the setup Tesla and SolarCity created, the island can stay powered for 3 full days without the sun. Should the sun stay out of sight for that time, the system recharges to 100% with 7 hours of sunlight. Now every home on the island can have clean electricity without the noise of generators.
What Does The Tau Microgrid Mean For You
With a solar panel installation on your home, you know you can power yourself during the day. For the evening, multiple of Tesla Powerwalls would deliver electricity when the sun is down. The fact that Tesla and SolarCity accomplished this confirms that a similar setup — on a much smaller scale — can accomplish the same thing.
This is exciting beyond words, particularly if you are leaning toward going solar. The video has no words but the visuals speak for themselves.
Leave your comment below and tell us what you think.