BP installs Tesla battery at US wind farm

BP has newly installed a battery storage system at one of its wind energy farms in South Dakota, in the hopes that it will provide a blueprint for adding similar power storage technology at its other US wind power sites.

BP said the technology will improve energy efficiency, address the intermittency of wind power by storing surplus electricity to meet demand when the wind is not blowing, and ultimately drive development of the renewable power generation industry.

Read: Tesla’s battery has saved South Australia so much money

Tesla designed and manufactured the 212 kW/840 kW/h battery storage system. It will be configured to manage the internal electricity demands of turbines when the wind isn’t blowing, according to BP.

BP hopes that the project will help the company develop new business models around the integration of renewables, battery storage and other forms of energy.

“Insights from this project will enable BP to make better-informed decisions when evaluating and developing battery applications in the future, as well as help us to create a wind energy business that is sustainable for the long term,” said Laura Folse, chief executive of BP Wind Energy.

Analysts estimate the world will shift from fossil fuels to renewables by 2035, a time when electric vehicles, wind power and solar power will likely be more prevalent than gasoline-powered vehicles or fossil fuel-based electricity.

The tipping point will come when new technology reaches 20% of market share, a sweet spot that reflects new consumer preferences and supply chains reaching a point of maturity, according to Wood Mackenzie.

BP operates 13 wind energy sites in Texas, Colorado, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Pennsylvania, and South Dakota. The company also owns an interest in a wind farm in Hawaii. The US wind sites have a generating capacity of 2,259MW, enough to power a city the size of Philadelphia.

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