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[Infrastructure Cost] Tesla Superchargers Station Cost?

Discussion in 'Charging Standards and Infrastructure' started by bohueilin, Dec 7, 2014.

  1. bohueilin

    bohueilin New Member

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    Hi there,
    My name is Mark, I am a MBA student at Babson College currently doing some research and analysis for course work. I was wondering if anyone knows and can point me to more information on how much it cost to build a super charging station on average? (Labors + Materials + others etc)

    All I can find so far is that it cost about 250k now (2014), I would like to know more details on the cost and if the cost may be going down in the near future.
    Thank you guys and have a wonderful day/night
    Mark
     
  2. Cosmacelf

    Cosmacelf Active Member

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    That info is not publicly available. People,on the forums have bandied about figures like $150k for a 6 bay supercharger, but really, this is a wild assed guess.

    If I were you, I would try to come up with a bill of materials and deduce the prices yourself. Here are some hints.

    Tesla usually doesn't pay for the parking spots themselves. They do pay for the electricity - you can use commercial power averages, including demand charges, for that. Bear in mind where the Chargers are located since a lot of them are in California where electric rates are high.

    Each Supercharger bay has one pedestal and is fed from 1/2 of a supercharger cabinet. Pedestals are pretty simple inside, if you search, you can find pictures of them inside. Each supercharger cabinet has 12 liquid cooled chargers in them, each charger being roughly equivalent to a car charger which tesla retails for about $2000. Each supercharger cabinet also has a compressor, coolant loops, and a big fan to blow hot air out of the cabinet, along with the usual sensors, circuit boards, etc.

    Each site is going to need some beefy switchgear that takes electrical feeds from a nearby transformer and distributes the electricity to each supercharger cabinet. Factor in a bunch of beefy conduit and electrical wires.

    If you look, you can find PDFs of permit applications which gives detailed line drawings of the gear and interconnection.

    Actual construction seems to take 2-3 weeks for buying conduit and concrete work.

    Good luck! And let us know what you come up with.
     
  3. CSFTN

    CSFTN Member

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    #3 CSFTN, Dec 8, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2014
    This is not a real answer, but ...several of these threads include links to the permits for the SCs. e.g. the Auburn Al thread includes one ... my memory was the permit for this location (which appears to include 6 stations) was for $140K value.

    update: went looking, here's the link http://www.auburnalabama.org/PSDir/codes/2014%20Construction%20Reports/November%202014.pdf
    Its the only entry on p. 4 of the PDF. ITS is the contractor for Tesla in Alabama.
     
  4. joachimm

    joachimm New Member

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    Your post got me thinking about the supercharger infrastructure cost to Tesla. There has been some discussions about where to focus the supercharger buildout. Should the supercharger team focus on places where many have bought a Tesla or to go to underserved areas where people would purchase if the infrastructure existed. Discussion about whether the cost of the supercharger rollout is an "advertisement" cost, have also been seen.

    Anyway when you look at the numbers about 60K cars have been sold to date. Assuming 50K of these cars are supercharger enabled at $2K each. That is 50K x $2K = 100 Million dollars. With about 300 superchargers world wide, thats about $300K per station. Of course maintenance and the cost of electricity should also be factored in, but if we assume that a supercharger costs between $100K-250K I would guess that the Supercharger initiative is either very profitable or hugely profitable. :wink:
    Going forward I wouldn't be surprised if the supercharger initiative becomes a large profit generator for Tesla.
     
  5. scaesare

    scaesare Active Member

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    Hmmm... for some reason I had always assumed that the supercharger cabinets simply used a radiator style heat-exchanger without the additional complexity of a chiller system, even though the Model S obviously does that.

    Pictures of the inside of the Supercharger cabinets are pretty scarce, and the one I've seen showing the coolant lines is only one side of the enclosure:

    Moab Supercharger Wiring-1.JPG

    Have you seen evidence there's a compressor/freon setup in there as well?

    Thanks.
     
  6. SW2Fiddler

    SW2Fiddler Bannd Member

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    The contractor for Lake Charles pointed at the cabinets and said "each one has its own AC unit..."
     
  7. scaesare

    scaesare Active Member

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    Ahh very good... thanks. Learned something new. :)
     
  8. Cottonwood

    Cottonwood Roadster#433, Model S#S37

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    Could be true, but I do not think so. I think that is my picture above; if not, I took one very much like it when Moab was being completed. I've stared at a lot of Supercharger Cabinets and never seen a sign of a compressor.

    To the best of my knowledge, the Supercharger cabinets do not have an active heat pump for cooling and only use passive cooling liquid for heat out of the charging modules and then a big fan and pretty standard radiator to transfer the heat from the cooling fluid to the air.
     
  9. airj1012

    airj1012 Active Member

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  10. scaesare

    scaesare Active Member

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    That very likely is yours then Cottonwood... the google image caption for it said "Moab".

    Obviously there are no refrigeration components on that side. I was under the same initial impression that it was just liquid cooled, as you describe.

    You say you've seen the reverse side and no compressor?
     
  11. Cottonwood

    Cottonwood Roadster#433, Model S#S37

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    I have not personally seen the inside of "the other side", but there have been some pics posted on TMC somewhere, and I did not see any hints of a compressor in them.

    It makes sense that there is a heat pump providing active cooling in the car, but not in the Supercharger Cabinet. The car contains batteries and humans that do not like high temperatures. The charging modules are purely electronic, and while they do have a lower failure rate when cooler, can tolerate much higher temps than batteries or humans. Therefore by using the liquid loop that the charging modules are designed for, but then just getting rid of the heat with a radiator and fan reduces a lot of complexity.
     
  12. Gregsbeach

    Gregsbeach Member

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    i believe that ELON MUSK has been quoted saying the construction costs including permits and everything(all in) is between $300,000 and $500,000.
     
  13. deonb

    deonb Active Member

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    Not quite. Elon said publically that the SuperChargers are $150k without Solar, and $300k with Solar.

    (I'm not saying that it's not a wild assed guess. Just saying that it's Elon's wild assed guess, not the forum's...)
     
  14. Cosmacelf

    Cosmacelf Active Member

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    As the person that said each cabinet has a compressor, I'd like to say that was my wild assed guess. I have no idea actually, I just assumed that since the car uses one, the SCs would use one too. In looking at the pictures, those hoses look like standard radiator hoses, so it wouldn't be surprising if it were just a radiator with auto coolant.

    Interesting that it still works Ok in 110 degree heat...
     

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