Tesla Megapack fire in Australia blamed on undetected coolant leak

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FILE PHOTO: The brand of automobile producer Tesla is seen at a dealership in London, Britain, Might 14, 2021. REUTERS/Matthew Childs/File Picture

  • Quick circuits went undetected throughout testing
  • State regulator requires Tesla to launch its findings
  • Neoen says Tesla fixing world Megapack fleet

MELBOURNE, Sept 28 (Reuters) – A fireplace that broken two Tesla Inc battery models at an enormous power storage challenge in Australia in July was attributable to a coolant leak that went undetected throughout start-up exams, a state watchdog mentioned in a report launched on Tuesday.

Security regulators on Tuesday cleared the so-called Victoria Large Battery challenge, run by French renewables agency Neoen SA , to renew testing on the website close to Melbourne.

Nevertheless the security regulator Vitality Secure Victoria mentioned it would now decide whether or not there have been any breaches of the state’s electrical energy security guidelines and “if that’s the case, whether or not enforcement motion is warranted”.

Neoen mentioned it’s working with Tesla to make sure the 450 megawatt hour power storage challenge is prepared for the Australian summer time, which begins in December. Testing will resume on Wednesday.

“We’ve taken the time to know the reason for the incident and we now have carried out actions to make sure it is not going to occur once more,” Neoen Australia Managing Director Louis de Sambucy mentioned.

The fireplace was first detected on July 30 when smoke was noticed popping out of 1 Megapack after which erupted into flames, which took a number of hours to subside. It took three day earlier than hearth authorities declared the location below management.

Investigations by a number of Victoria state businesses discovered that the fireplace within the Megapack, a delivery container-sized battery unit, was triggered by brief circuits in two areas doubtless attributable to a coolant leak outdoors the battery compartment.

The brief circuits occurred when the Megapack had been switched off after preliminary testing, which eliminated fault protections. That meant the fault went undetected and the fireplace unfold to an adjoining battery compartment.

Actions have been taken to stop that occuring once more on the Victoria website and throughout Tesla’s world fleet of Megapacks, Neoen mentioned.

“By way of these actions, Tesla has improved the detectability and related fault safety towards all these uncommon occasions,” Neoen mentioned.

The Victoria Large Battery is without doubt one of the world’s largest and is seen as important to stopping blackouts in a market that’s more and more reliant on photo voltaic and wind energy, particularly throughout heatwaves.

Tesla has not commented on the fireplace.

Vitality Secure Victoria mentioned it has required Tesla to offer the ultimate outcomes of its investigation into why the fireplace triggered the lack of a second Megapack and what it would do to stop that from occurring once more.

($1 = 1.3778 Australian {dollars})

Reporting by Sonali Paul in Melbourne; Further reporting by Tejaswi Marthi in Bengaluru; Enhancing by Michael Perry


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