Soon, Tesla will no longer build gigafactorys, said CEO Elon Musk recently with regard to his huge battery demand, but tera factories that spit out one or more terawatt hours of battery cells per year . Part of the specific Tesla plans for much more and cheaper batteries have now leaked, while Musk postponed the official launch date. But a consulting firm is now showing how much bigger the Tesla boss’s work has already made the battery market – and how huge the next step in Tera production is.
The first Gigafactory came from Tesla
In 2015, the average battery factory worldwide only produced 500 megawatt hours of cells per year, according to a graphic published by Benchmark Minerals. At the beginning of 2016, however, the Tesla and Panasonic battery plant in the US state of Nevada went into operation , which Musk had already described as a Gigafactory in late 2013. Cells and battery packs for the Tesla Model 3 are produced there – according to plans, more than before in the rest of the industry. According to information from December 2019, the Giga Nevada had previously reached a capacity of around 30 gigawatt hours per year .
As a result and in parallel, the average capacity of battery factories worldwide has risen to 7.28 gigawatt hours per year according to the benchmark by 2020 – Tesla has already driven the industry into the gigantic range. But the electrical pioneer is getting competition or, given the steep growth in demand, it may be more of a company: According to another benchmark study, both CATL from China and LG Chem from South Korea already had a higher cell capacity in 2019 than Tesla partner Panasonic . CATL has since become a partner of Tesla and, according to a current report, is to produce various cheap and durable battery types for electric cars and stationary storage.
For more information on Tesla’s Tera plans, however, the world will have to wait for the official battery information day , which CEO Musk has now postponed from May to June. CATL says it currently has a capacity of 53 gigawatt hours per year and is building another 22 gigawatt hours – a little further from the terawatt hour range and spread over several factories.
Tesla far ahead again with Terafactory?
Benchmark Minerals believes that it will take significantly longer than 2030 for the average of all battery cell plants to land in these dimensions: For this year, market researchers predict an average annual capacity of 18.9 gigawatt hours – that’s more than twice as much 2020, but also far from tera. The achievement of terawatt hours per year therefore shifts the benchmark in its graph into an area that is not defined in terms of time. But if CEO Musk makes his announcements true, Tesla could once again be as far ahead of the battery industry in 2030 with a Terafactory as it was in 2016 with the first Gigafactory.