Powering Up

Tesla’s innovations in battery technology are closely associated with its development of electric cars. However, ultimately the bigger application might be in powering our homes. Solar power efficiency is improving but suffers from the permanent failing of not working when it is dark – typically the times when we want to use electricity, particularly during the British winter. However, Tesla’s Powerwall allows excess electricity generated from solar panels during the day to be stored so that it can be used either in the evening or at times when the cost is higher. For a block of flats or a commercial building, potentially this offers a route for the landlord not just to provide the real estate, but also all or part of the energy supply, without recourse to the grid. In a wider sense, ownership and operation of real estate creates a platform to offer a wide range of services that might ultimately prove more valuable than the real estate itself.