Tesla’s Musk asks utilities: How can we take battery storage ‘to a whole new level’?
NEW ORLEANS — The co-founders of Tesla Motors Inc. yesterday invited executives of the nation’s dominant utilities to partner with the Silicon Valley electric carmaker to boost battery storage capacity across the U.S. power grid.
Speaking before the year’s largest gathering of power industry executives, Tesla CEO Elon Musk and his chief technology officer, JB Straubel, addressed nagging anxiety in the room that massive investment in storage technology that further enables rooftop solar power threatens utilities charged with maintaining the electric grid.
In remarks seen as partly a sales pitch for Tesla’s latest expansion into utility-scale battery technology, Musk pressed the point that storage can help utilities balance and protect the electric grid as new sources of generation come online.
“What we would like to do is engage in a dialogue and say, ‘How can what Tesla does be most useful to the utility industry?'” Musk said. “‘How do we build stationary storage technology that helps to take things to a whole new level?'”