Skip to comments.Giant Tesla battery factory producing 'affordable' electric cars at $35,000? [Nevada solar?]
Posted on 04/12/2014 3:07:03 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
"......The California car firm yesterday revealed plans for the factory that would employ up to 6,500 people , cover 1,000 acres, and cost $5 billion, said the Wall Street Journal,
Solar and wind farms would at least in part supply the huge power needs of the plant in either Nevada, New Mexico, or Arizona. Reno is thought to be a favorite.
Tesla needs its own production to hit its cost target for a more affordable car.
Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk's idea is a "Gigafactory" that takes in raw materials and produces finished lithium-ion batteries. He has said he intends to build the factory with unidentified partners...."
Two months prior to the announcement of "gigafactory" plans that is causing nerd orgasms all over the tech and auto sphere, another of Musk's interests, SolarCity (SCTY_) announced a new program that would provide large batteries to businesses to help them lower peak demand rates.
The program, DemandLogic, announced in early December, couples the solar panel installations that SolarCity is known for with refrigerator-sized batteries that store up to a third of the solar power. Specially design software can be programmed to take advantage of that stored electricity during times of peak demand........
........In SolarCity's DemandLogic, we see a practical solution for the company's customers that also has a benefit for its sister company, which needed to expand its battery-producing operations to produce more, better and cheaper cars.
How does that fit in with Musk's third company, SpaceX? Hard to tell. As a private company, SpaceX is under little obligation to tell us anything. Musk has said in interviews that SpaceX doesn't patent its technology for fear of handing proprietary technology to two of its direct competitors, the state-run programs of Russia and China, where U.S. patents are next to impossible to enforce. But I doubt Musk would have the same concerns about sharing technology developed in SpaceX's rocketry and space travel labs with Tesla and SolarCity..........
SolarCity Gets Charge From Tesla Gigafactory - Feb 28, 2014
The U.S. taxpayers have "invested" around a $1Billion in Musk's 3 PRIVATE businesses. Not to mention those carbon credits.
April 2, 2014 - Tesla in China: Elon Musks Litmus Test "...........So, has Tesla managed to hit the right chord in China? Will Teslas Model S strategy break the mold of high-priced imported cars in China? And above all, for Tesla, is the risk worth it? Opinion is divided over whether Teslas China pricing is realistic or not. Andreas Graef, a Principal at A.T. Kearney Management Consulting Co. in Shanghai, believes that the current price does not factor in distribution and marketing-related costs, which a foreign brand direly needs while trying to establish a foothold in China. Has Tesla factored in the higher cost of advertising or higher tactical MSRP [manufacturers suggested retail price] discounts? he asks. (Tesla did not respond to interview requests.)......."
“We built a huge battery factory without considering where the extra capacity to charge those batteries would come from. Electricity is magic and comes from the walls.”
Wind farms are not as efficient as they claim, neither is solar.
Yet this hasn’t stopped them from slashing nuke and coal plants.
They must first address capacity on the grid before they start pez dispensing electric toys.
And even then, the only way the toys can compete is if gubbmint puts its hands in there and gives the toys a monopoly...
Tesla got a $465M loan from the government in Aug 2009 and finished paying it off last year with interest.
Ford received a $5.9 BILLION loan from the feds and plans to pay it off over 20 years. Tesla has no other government funds.
SpaceX funding has all been private to the tune of about $1.2B. SpaceX launch contracts are 2/3 private 1/3 NASA. NASA granted a $1.2B contract to SpaceX and made an advance payment of $278M. It would cost the taxpayers about $2B if NASA made those launches themselves.
Don’t know much about Solar City.
You can have 50% of the auto market become electric vehicles without building a single extra power plant.
Because power plants are largely idle at night.
It makes financial sense for EV owners to power overnight while they are asleep and rates are lowest.
Plus this allows power companies to run plants at closer to capacity allowing the fixed cost to generate each kw to fall.
With fairly cheap smart grid tech technology you can significantly increase EV penetration over 50% without building any extra power plants.
They are selling us junk science. These technologies have not matured yet the infrastructure is not in place to accomodate. Much like inventing the car and gasoline but no gas stations to support it. They have found a way of scamming tax payer money with the help of our politicians to fund these projects all the while thier main goal is to fill thier pockets, SOLYNDRA
The other issue with large numbers of electrics is funding road construction and maintenance. Owners don’t pay gas taxes, and so aren’t paying their share. This will have to be addressed sooner or later if the numbers grow.
What ever happened to the idea of super capacitors??
Exactly right. I very much admire Elon Musk;I think he’s brilliant. He’s getting a lot of flack lately because *gasp* he wants to sell his cars directly to the owner. States are under pressure from auto dealers. Heaven forbid we cut out the middleman. Likely one of the great inventors of our age. Not to mention he’s a LEGAL immigrant.
On the vehicle side, I am pretty steadfast in my skepticism at $200 or above. Im a bear, Albertine said. My bull case is in the case that the cars become ancillary.
Tesla, he said, would essentially become a power storage company. That would benefit SolarCity Corp., which is partly owned by Musk and may be a partner in the factory.
Musk said last week that Panasonic Corp. -- now the biggest supplier of lithium-ion cells used in Teslas batteries -- may also be involved. Panasonics participation is not 100 percent confirmed, he said in a Bloomberg Television interview.
While Tesla identified only four states as potential hosts, its going to draw interest from many others, Cuneo said. He predicted a robust competition where incentives are probably going to be a big factor.
A slide-show on the Tesla website includes a rendering of the facility in a desert landscape, with adjacent solar and wind farms to supply electricity. Construction could begin as early as this year, according to the presentation.".....
Short story is that you want to be in the upper left corner of this graph to power a motor vehicle. Supercapacitors are not yet as good as lead acid or lithium ion batteries. Fuel cells are in the right spot but far too expensive using platinum or palladium as catalysts.
Fight the Free Sh☭t Nation
Should be that you want to be in the upper right of this diagram. Mis-typed.
So I take it you are not enthused about the work being done with Graphene which I believe puts it in the category of an Ultra Capacitor? I see some Graphene websites with PHD types experimenting with Silica and Tungsten DiSulfide in combination with the Graphene...
I think the idea of electric cars running on batteries is wrongheaded anyway. They should generate their own electricity rather than relying on batteries.
In their current form they’re rendered virtually useless in this part of the country during the winter.
The solution to electric cars is to develop a standard detachable battery pack, like my cordless drill, that can be replaced in a few minutes. You could go to a station, an attended could switch packs while you get coffee. The station could charge a fee and everyone is happy. No more 8 hour down times.
The subsidies and investment of public money have to be counted too. Also, the maintenance/replacement cost of the batteries.
Failure to count that is journalistic malpractice.
My enthusiasm is also tempered by watching the evolution of the next thing to replace the magnetic disk drive. There was SOS, Magnetic bubbles, optical, magneto-optic and a host of others. Now flash may do the job, or the boffins at IBM will pull another order of magnitude increase in density out of their nether regions. I don't know where the smart money is today, but I do know where it has been.
Technology is hard. 9 out of 10 good ideas don't pan out as successful companies. And remember, these things are not sources of energy, merely really cool gas tanks.
Fight the Free Sh☭t Nation
There is also the problem of an already overtaxed power grid, looming increases in prices due to EPA regulations, and increased Federal and state taxes on power consumption as the gasoline taxes for road building and maintenance decline.
Does anyone imagine that the EPA will suddenly stop imposing more draconian regulations on power producers? Does anyone imagine that the power companies will eat the cost of EPA compliance?
And who thinks $35K for a car is affordable in the first place? We all know that the $35K price is before shipping, dealer prep and markup - so now the “affordable” car is $40K before any options are added by the customer. How do electric cars perform going over the Rocky and Cascade Mountains; how do they perform during the height of a cold winter? Does that car heater keep you warm on your 30 mile commute when temperatures are in the minuses? How much range do you lose because that heater is going full blast, while diving at 60-70 MPH? And when stuck in a traffic jam during the winter?
50% of the auto market becoming electric vehicles in the South Western US and Hawaii maybe, but not 50% of the entire US and Alaska.
And cheap smart grid technology is still largely a dream for most of the US power grid, still struggling to replace aging equipment. True smart grid technology also means the Federal government will have access to your personal power consumption by just one new Federal regulation. Can a new Federal tax be far behind?
Outstanding post M H...
Tesla is making money on carbon credits now.
Solar City is making money from the Chinese solar panels it has installed on schools and military installations (where they rent them).
Space X has a manifest of government and commercial contracts (a few have flown).
It seems a lot of taxpayer money has found its way into Musk’s pocket - and the profit will be all his. In coming years we will be paying through the nose for energy, rocket rides and private transportation -— just watch.