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Posted on EVANNEX on December 26, 2022, by Peter McGuthrie
Following Tesla’s acquisition of SolarCity in 2016, the market for solar energy has struggled to gain footing in the U.S. market. However, more recent data shows some growth in the sector, and Tesla recently reached an important milestone for its solar business, despite some ongoing supply challenges.
Above: A house with Tesla’s solar roof. (Image: Tesla)
Tesla announced that it has completed 500,000 solar installations to date, which the company says is equal to around 4 GW of clean energy, according to a report from electrek. The news emphasizes Tesla’s continued growth into the solar power and energy storage markets, a key side business to its clean energy vehicles.
Major supply chain barriers have plagued Tesla’s solar business throughout 2022, though it has still managed a few record-breaking quarters for solar installations. Most of its solar installations are performed by third parties, letting the company focus on manufacturing and deployment of its solar hardware.
Tesla offers a range of clean energy products, with solar panels, solar roofs, solar inverters and Powerwalls being its most common residential products. For larger energy storage projects, Tesla also offers its 3 MWh Megapack systems, which the company says is enough energy to power roughly 3,600 homes for an hour.
Recently, Tesla also launched Tesla Electric to officially become an electricity retailer in Texas. The project has taken years of work to complete, and it’s the latest in the company’s journey to create huge distributed batteries generated by clean electricity.
“With Tesla Electric, your Powerwall automatically decides when to charge and when to sell electricity to the grid,” writes Tesla on its website. “Together with other Tesla Electric members, you can maximize the value of your solar energy while using your Powerwall storage to add more renewable electricity to the grid.”
“You can also achieve your own sustainability goals when importing electricity from the grid, as Tesla Electric offsets your usage with energy from 100 percent renewable sources,” Tesla added.
Earlier this year, CEO Elon Musk said that Tesla was aiming to produce 1,000 solar roofs per week, though it has only reached a max output of around 23 solar roofs per week. Still, he also referenced supply chain problems, saying that supply for its solar products was low to let customers purchase a Powerwall without ordering solar. Instead, Musk added that users should be able to order a Powerwall by itself by the end of the year.
In any case, Tesla’s clean energy storage and generation business is rapidly growing with programs like its Virtual Power Plant pilot and huge Megapack storage sites being deployed worldwide. As these products are deployed at-large, the world should continue to grow less reliant on traditional fuels and coal for a cleaner overall atmosphere.
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