There May Be a New King of Solar Batteries Soon

This new colossal solar battery in the California desert will be able to store more than 3 times the amount of electricity of the world’s current biggest solar battery.

Garland solar farm. Image from Recurrent Energy
Garland solar farm. Image from Recurrent Energy

Without a doubt you will find few companies that are as forward thinking when it comes to the environment as Tesla. Despite that their rockets are one of the biggest fossil fuel users on the planet, the rest of what they produce is quite environmentally friendly. Evidence of this could be seen when they brought the world’s largest battery online in November of 2017. As impressive as that feat was that huge solar battery may soon be number two in the world if a group of California investors have their way. 

Who Is This Possible New Solar Battery King? 

This huge new solar generating project with the enormous solar battery is the brainchild of a San Francisco based company called recurrent energy. The gigantic solar battery is only a small part of what would be a solar energy generation site that would cover an area of land some 2,500 acres in size. That’s a whole lot of solar panels to say the least. When the plant is up and functioning it will be able to produce some 350 megawatts of electricity. 

For those of you who are familiar with California’s topography the new site will be located at the base of the Mule Mountains just east of Palm Springs in a highly desert like area that already is home to several smaller solar farms. Under the proposal by Recurrent Energy not only will the site be able to generate 350 megawatts of electricity but they want a battery big enough to store that amount of solar generated electricity too. 

How Does This Compare With Tesla’s Huge Solar Battery? 

When Tesla’s gigantic solar battery came online last year in Australia it was the world’s largest dedicated solar storage battery at the time. Perhaps the most impressive feat with the whole project is Tesla claimed they could build it in 100 days and they did. Once online the Tesla battery was thought to be able to store some 100 megawatts of electricity. 

So once finished this new colossal solar battery in the California desert will be able to store more than 3 times the amount of electricity that the world’s current biggest solar battery can now hold. That’s pretty impressive to say the least.  

Environmental Activists Are Not Happy With the Proposal 

Of course while this looks good on paper there will definitely be some hurdles that Recurrent Energy needs to get over in order to get permission to build this gigantic solar field with its huge solar battery. For one, permitting for a solar project of this size typically takes several years to get done. Another hurdle would have to do with the companies resolve in getting it built. The sticking point there is they do not have a sure buyer signed up yet for the energy that will be produced and stored at the new solar field. Although with California’s demand for energy that does not look like it will be a big problem. 

What could be a big problem is that some of California’s powerful conservation groups will fight the plan until the end. They cite the fact that the area is already overcrowded with solar power generating plants and this one will be even bigger. These groups feel it will be another negative blow to what was once one of the largest and most intact ecosystems in America. This same ecosystem has already seen species like the desert tortoise and bighorn sheep inch closer to being endangered. 

Once Again Solar Batteries Are In the News 

This is another example of how solar related articles are starting to be dominated by solar batteries. That may be because while the new gains in solar photovoltaic are relatively small and somewhat insignificant, the gains made in solar power battery storage have been taking giant steps. 

This new solar battery in California is a good example in the trend of solar batteries. Look for them to get bigger and bigger until finally the technology is there that will allow them to completely bridge the gap between daytime solar energy production and the time during a day when no solar energy production is possible. When that finally happens the possibilities that come with solar power use will be limitless. 



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