Sponsored
Tesla’s Powerwall battery has an in-built inverter and can be easily retrofitted to any site with or without solar. Picture: SUPPLIED/DPA
Tesla’s Powerwall battery has an in-built inverter and can be easily retrofitted to any site with or without solar. Picture: SUPPLIED/DPA

Distributed Power Africa (DPA) is installing Tesla Powerwalls to power Econet Wireless’ local operations of its telecommunications towers, kicking off one of Africa’s largest deployments of AC-coupled lithium-ion batteries in the telecoms sector.

This follows the completion of a 12-month trial integrating Tesla Powerwall with one of Econet’s telecommunication towers to provide backup power. 

Tesla’s Powerwall battery has an in-built inverter and can be easily retrofitted to any site with or without solar. Its high-energy density increases on-site energy storage potential and is ideal for space-constrained locations. The batteries, which can be discharged 100%, can be installed indoors or outdoors and are designed to provide seamless backup during grid outages.

Tesla will supply DPA with 520 Powerwalls to power 260 Econet sites, with the first 65 sites to be installed in the coming months.

Tesla will supply DPA with 520 Powerwalls to power 260 Econet sites. Picture: SUPPLIED/DPA
Tesla will supply DPA with 520 Powerwalls to power 260 Econet sites. Picture: SUPPLIED/DPA

DPA CEO Norman Moyo said: “We were impressed with the performance of Tesla Powerwall during the trial stage. It addresses the power backup requirements, offers 100% depth of discharge and has a wide temperature operating range. It also offers real-time monitoring and will help mitigate current battery theft issues being experienced with lead-acid batteries. We look forward to working with Tesla on other initiatives in energy security.”

SA and Zimbabwe are among the many African countries where increased cases of battery theft have been linked to frequent power outages in areas with intermittent grid supply. Businesses are looking for ways to secure reliable energy supply, and the replacement of lead-acid batteries with lithium-ion batteries helps in this regard.

DPA has received great interest from the commercial and industrial sector in SA, Kenya and Zimbabwe for such renewable energy products, and is looking forward to delivering increased access to solar power and battery technology through strategic partnerships with global technology leaders.

DPA’s use of Tesla Powerwall will provide telecoms customers with improved service delivery and comes at a strategic point when Africa is working to improve its power supply.

This article was paid for by Distributed Power Africa.