It looks like a simple tweet was all it took to get Elon Musk amped up to give Puerto Rico a redesigned power grid. After a Twitter user asked the billionaire if he could rebuild the island’s infrastructure with solar and battery systems, Musk replied, “The Tesla team has done this for many smaller islands around the world... it can be done for Puerto Rico too.” He added that such a project would need to be decided on by the government and locals. What do ya know? The Governor of Puerto Rico, Ricardo Rossello, tweeted back: “Let’s talk.”
And just over two weeks later, Tesla has shared some progress in the collaboration. The setup of solar cells and batteries shown below will power Puerto Rico’s Hospital del Niño. It is the first of many similar projects to come, according to the company’s tweet.
Tesla is already helping Australia stabilize its grid with the world’s largest lithium-ion battery, and earlier this year the company outfitted the island of Kauai with a massive solar farm and utility-scale Powerpack batteries to supply 44 percent of its energy needs. A similar grid redesign could be deployed in Puerto Rico, where the company has also been sending Powerwall home battery systems to help stabilize energy sources in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria.