According to a report in Bloomberg Econet is now turning to Tesla Powerwall batteries to help stem the onslaught of 18-hour powercuts that ZESA is unleashing upon hapless Zimbabweans.
Chances are when you read about these awesome batteries you wanted them for yourself. To shield yourself from the darkness. The natural question is how much do these batteries cost? To prepare your feeble heart for the number we have first let us tell you just how bad the powercuts again and the wonders they are working for Econet.
If you are living in Zimbabwe like the rest of us tormented souls, then you have been affected by ZESA’s crippling power cuts which sometimes last for more than 18 hours.
The power cuts couldn’t have come at a worse time as there are also fuel shortages. Econet has come up with a solution using Tesla’s famed Powerwall batteries. They are installing two of these batteries onto their base station sites. They have installed around 520 of these according to Techzim.
The batteries typically come in twin forms i.e. two Powerwalls at each site. According to Econet, these batteries can last for 10-11 hours which means they can power a base station throughout the night. When sunlight comes out solar panels then charge these batteries and power the base station at the same time.
So how much do these costs
We hope you are ready for this:
Each Telsa Powerall 2 costs US $5 900 before shipping from the United States. Expect to pay at least US $10 000 for each unit locally although you will be hard-pressed to find anyone selling these.
Locally the renewable power company DPA is the one that has them in stock but as far as we can tell they are for inhouse use as they install systems and right now they are swamped with a waiting list featuring companies running away from the defunct power utility ZESA.
So how did Econet get to the front of the line? Well, DPA is a literary family and you know how it goes. You do anything for family. DPA is part of the Econet group.
Is the battery really worth the price?
So is the Tesla Powerwall 2 really worth this price tag and its quite the price tag. You can buy four Honda Fit cars with that kind of money and a house in the high-density suburbs if you are so inclined.
Well, this is what you get:
- Each battery comes with an inbuilt DC-AC inverter so the only thing missing would be solar panels here.
- The invertor can produce up to 7Kw of power and produce a steady 5Kw
- It has a capacity of 13.5 Kwh
The price is pretty much a bargain for a Lithium-ion battery with those specs let alone one that comes from such a reputable company and with an inbuilt inverter too. One battery would be enough for all your electronic needs minus the stove part. Two would be more than enough yes even if you switch on your borehole.
Seems to be worth it too. As a parting shot, the $5 million Wicknell got could have bought at least 500 batteries at $10 000 since it’s the government which means no duties and such they could have bought close to 600. That would be enough for most critical places such as hospitals.
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