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Solar Roof update of sorts

Discussion in 'Tesla Energy' started by brucet999, Jan 4, 2017.

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  1. brucet999

    brucet999 Active Member

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    I talked to a Tesla Energy (Solar City) guy in Home Depot today and asked when Solar Roof would be generally available. He said that they had had an employee meeting just yesterday at which they were told that Solar Roof is still in beta and the company is trying to judge market demand before committing to actual commercial scale production. He had the impression that production might be a year or more away. He had no idea how "market demand" would be determined.

    No details were passed on to field employees about installation methods or how active tiles might be ganged together into strings, nor whether there would be power optimizers to compensate for shaded tiles or different sun exposures of various areas of roof.
     
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  2. TexasEV

    TexasEV Well-Known Member

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    I don't remember where I saw this, but in an article about the new Solar City/Tesla/Panasonic factory in Buffalo it said Tesla will begin with production of only one of the four solar roof tile styles. Maybe the demand he's referring to is regarding which of the four to start with?
     
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  3. Ulmo

    Ulmo Active Member

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    This seems false. Why would Tesla announce a product they have no intention of selling?

    But, it doesn't seem unprecedented. They introduced Battery Swap, but put it in a stinky field that no one wants to stop at (it was awful to smell), then when the very few then-current Tesla owners who were all very wealthy and of a particular market segment did not use it, Tesla concluded that one single battery swap test site for one specific customer market type was a complete failure for the much higher number of Teslas on the road now with more owner types and more interest in just getting there rather than being fancy about it, and still a lack of desire to stop at a stinky place, and ended the battery swap program.

    Yet, with failing SuperChargers, full SuperChargers, and travel times that are much longer due to having to stop and charge, I think one thing a lot of Tesla drivers now want is battery swap.

    It's similar with Tesla Roof: everybody wants one, but it hasn't come out yet, and we need to see others buy it and report in on how good it is. Gauging demand off of the first batch of Tesla Roof buyers is like guaging demand by releasing a Chevy Bolt that looks like an ugly insect, not making it available at dealers, getting discriminated against at dealer lots for asking about it, and then claiming that there is not "sufficient demand for that product type", without specifying that the product type was an ugly car anti-marketed.

    I somehow think Tesla isn't going to do this with Tesla Roof. I think they want it to succeed. I really don't want to be wrong.
     
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  4. Tam

    Tam Active Member

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    Solar roof/shingle has been around before Tesla entry:

    Uni-Solar filed for bankruptcy in 2012.

    [​IMG]

    Solar roof by the name of Dow Chemical Powerhouse Solar has been selling since 2009 but it closed down its door in 2016.



    [​IMG]

    Others including Tesla are still around:

    Apollo Tile II


    [​IMG]


    SunTegra

    [​IMG]


    Atlantis Engergy:


    [​IMG]



    OkSolar.com


    [​IMG]



    I believe it's a tough market to get in.
     
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  5. WannabeOwner

    WannabeOwner Active Member

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    Do they not make a look-alike tile that can be cut (for the edges?) Seems ugly to me that the roof is some-and-some, although perhaps some of these are retro-fits rather than new-roof.
     
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  6. spentan

    spentan Active Member

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    The research I've done suggests it'll go into Volume production in Summer of 2017.
     
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  7. brucet999

    brucet999 Active Member

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    Where are you finding that? Every Web search I have done brings up only articles from about the time of the October reveal, or quoting that event, when the summer 2017 estimate was put out. I couldn't find anything more recent.
     
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  8. neroden

    neroden Happy Model S Owner

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    They've done so much work on the appearance of the tiles and had such a flashy announcement I think they're quite serious about the solar roof product. They did say they were going to do only one style at first and hadn't decided which one.
     
  9. brucet999

    brucet999 Active Member

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  10. Ludus

    Ludus Member

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    Battery swap made sense for ZEV credit purposes and fit as a potentially useful future technology that was compatible with a Tesla style flat bottom of vehicle pack. It just didn't make any sense for the current business model with owners buying their car and owning the pack. It was simply impractical to swap and store an open ended number of owner battery packs until they felt like coming back to the same station and swapping them back. It would work fine with Mobility fleets or other fleets that can charge and freely swap the packs in an automated system where the next vehicle gets the next charged pack in line and their old pack goes in the back of the charge line . It would work with bus systems or delivery truck fleets. It doesn't work with the current Tesla model.

    Superchargers aren't failing. They never could have worked with higher volumes of production on a "free" basis and Tesla always knew this...which is why they introduced pay charging and fees for parking after charging before model 3. They will also introduce automated charging with snake chargers as part of the long term solution. Superchargers will also get faster and gain urban locations and likely third party locations now they are pay as you go.

    So no Tesla didn't deliberately kill swapping because it never made sense and they never intended to deploy it with the current business model. Superchargers did and do make a lot of sense...but always needed to evolve. Tesla Roof is on track but may not be what you think it is. It's initially a Roadster level product aimed at the top 10% of the housing market, houses over $500k that a $50,000+ roof makes sense with and competes with similarly priced slate and tile that it looks like....not cheap asphalt shingle roofing at a fraction of that price. This is still a huge market that Tesla is dead serious about dominating before later moving down market as with cars.
     
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  11. Ludus

    Ludus Member

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    These illustrate some of the problems with past attempts. Look at the Dow shingles. They don't get the esthetics. They end up looking like a cheap patched roof with different asphalt shingles. Their business plan was to make a product to sell to the existing roofing contractors so they had serious limits on how they could deploy the technology. Roofing contractors it turns out aren't especially interested in learning to install solar PV roofs even if you bend over backwards to make the product for that purpose. Tesla doesn't have those limits. They can design the product to install however they please because they install it. They compete against the roofing contractors head to head rather than trying to sell to them.They get the esthetics. They target the high end roofing market for slate and tile not asphalt shingles that already costs 10x as much. They are set to dominate the high end roofing market with a product unlike anything ever tried in important ways.
     
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  12. lklundin

    lklundin Member

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    ...
    It is quite possible that you are wrong.

    Three weeks ago Elon Musk hinted at Supercharging well beyond 350 kW, which would obviate the need for the battery swap - as well as making failing/full Superchargers an even more rare occurrence than today.

    Elon Musk on Twitter
     
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  13. doctoxics

    doctoxics Member

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    Has anyone tried to determine the equivalent barrels of oil saved if production of asphalt roof materials were replaced with Tesla glass roof tiles? Since asphalt is a byproduct of oil refining and most roofs are asphalt, seems there could be a significant reduction in this form of carbon use. Another related question is how asphalt roofing is eventually disposed, in the ground or burned? If burned, then this part of the carbon cycle could be replaced with glass.
     
  14. brucet999

    brucet999 Active Member

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    Old composition shingles are simply sent to landfill.

    As to reduction of oil production as a result of switching from asphalt comp shingles to glass tiles, i think there is nothing to gain. First off, "asphalt shingles" are mostly fibrous material, soaked with asphalt and coated with colored stone granules, so asphalt probably amounts to less than 30% of the final product. Glass tiles are at least three times as thick and consume lots of energy to melt and form them, vastly more than is needed to melt asphalt to soak the fiber base of comp shingles. As carbon use goes, asphalt composition roof material is quite innocuous since it creates neither air nor water pollution and is chemically non-reactive except it can be made to burn if flames get under it.

    Asphalt is made from the longest molecules of crude oil, solid at room temperature and unsuitable for any other purpose but road building and cheap roofing materials. It is more of a byproduct of fuels production than a desirable end product in and of itself. Theoretically, it could be cracked into smaller molecules useful as fuels, but if that were economically viable, refineries would already be doing it, since fuels return more dollars than tar products do. If demand for asphalt shingles were to disappear, the material might either become a disposal problem or cause increased cost for other products by addition of cracking costs to convert asphalt, or it might slightly drive down the cost of asphalt for road construction due to increased supply.
     
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  15. neroden

    neroden Happy Model S Owner

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    It'll be the last one. Path of least resistance.

    When *gasoline* demand massively drops, however, gasoline production will drop to match. Since asphalt is a byproduct of gasoline refining, asphalt production will also drop. The reduction in the asphalt supply will lead to a rise in asphalt prices.

    So as electric cars take over, it will actually make asphalt shingling more expensive. If you've got all the moving parts of this in your head, you see the brilliance of Musk's positioning. Right now the Solar Roof is almost certainly much more expensive than asphalt shingles, but in seven years when electric cars are dominating the market, the price of asphalt shingles will go up... and the price of the solar roof won't. Incredibly smart positioning for the future.

    But not obvious unless you see all the moving pieces.
     
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  16. brucet999

    brucet999 Active Member

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    When gasoline demand massively drops, crude oil prices will massively drop as well, reducing the price of all oil products. Assuming the same number of cars, but just a shift away from petroleum motor fuels, then the balance of that reduced refining output will shift toward lube oils (even Teslas have gears), bunker fuels for ships, heating oil, and petrochemical feedstocks, but overall refinery throughput will still drop, increasing the unit cost allocation of fixed overhead on all products. With the resultant excess refining capacity, we might actually see slightly lower prices for petroleum-derived plastics, asphalt products and even fuels along with a collapse of expensive shale oil production and closure of marginally efficient refineries.

    There are a lot of moving parts to the oil industry.
     
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  17. neroden

    neroden Happy Model S Owner

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    There sure are a lot of moving parts.

    Crude oil has several floors on its pricing set by production costs; below those floors, drillling shuts down.

    I'm looking to the time *after* the excess refining capacity, after the refineries shut down to remove the excess refining capacity. This creates less total production capacity (necessary to rebalance the gasoline market) which means less total production of asphalt, etc. Which should bring the price up.
     
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  18. timpierc

    timpierc Member

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    Actually if you look at break even costs, shale oil in the Permian Basin, and Eagle Ford is now cost competitive with Saudi Arabia, and other gulf oil for costs. Shale isn't going anywhere for a while, unless oil goes below $20 per barrell.
     
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  19. K-MTG

    K-MTG Sunshade Captain of TMC

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    I am still curious on how the solar roof will work in cities like Irvine where they are most trackhome with strict association guidelines
     
  20. Tam

    Tam Active Member

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    Tesla Solar Roof looks so good that makes the rest of neighbors in the association look bad?
     
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