Not content with building a fleet of the most desirable electric motors around, Tesla co-founder and everyone’s favourite tech CEO Elon Musk has just unveiled the brand’s latest creation. It’s called the Powerwall and it might just save the world.
It’s a fact – we rely far too much on fossil fuels to power our electricity hungry houses. But just like trying to entice people into switching their petrol guzzling cars for something electric, Tesla is now taking this same thinking into the home.
The Powerwall will sit mounted on your wall and, Musk hopes, help everyone reduce their reliance on traditional forms on energy thereby saving some cash on the monthly ‘leccy bill so you can give it to Musk instead.
How does it work?
If you’ve already decked your home out in swathes of solar panels, the Powerwall will tap into them and store excess energy. It can use this to power the house on those grim, drizzly days in the British summer.
For everyone else it will use a nifty feature called ‘load shifting’. Recharging itself during times when electricity is cheaper – this is big deal in the States, with different prices at different times according to demand. Over here, it could presumably tap into Economy 7, if that’s still a thing, and charge up overnight. It then uses that energy to keep everything ticking over during peak hours and powercuts.
So really, it’s like a battery charger for your smartphone, only enormous and for your house.
In typical Musk fashion, he has some pretty grand ambitions for this new product. He claims it will not only help people rely less on the depleting sources of fossil fuels, but that it will help get electricity to remote parts of the planet.
Curvy and colourful
We never thought we’d be saying this, but Tesla has crafted an undeniably sexy battery here. It has that curvy nature of the brand’s iconic cars and comes emblazoned with the Tesla logo stamped on the front. You’ll also be able to get it in a hue that matches your walls – as long as they are blue, red, grey or white.
When the Powerwall starts shipping in three months, there’ll be a couple of varieties available. A $3,000 7kWh model is the one designed for everyday use, while $3,500 gets you 10kWh. This version is meant to be used a backup, ideal if you suffer from blackouts and powercuts.
The US will get hands their mits on this slice of sci-fi tech first, with Australia and Germany following by the end of the year. Looks like us UK folk will have to rely on that dirty fossil fuel a tad longer, as there’s no release planned for this side of the pond just yet.