Tesla Motors manufactures the Tesla Model S, the all-electric car that won the Motor Trend 2013 Car of the Year award. While developing the car, Tesla launched a program to aggressively deploy high-power, fast-charging stations — “Superchargers” — along major travel corridors throughout the United States.
Tesla awarded Black & Veatch a contract to design and construct pilot sites in the Supercharger network. The Tesla Supercharger U.S. build-out is the largest project to date for the Black & Veatch team. Services include engineering, site assessment, and permitting and construction services for Tesla’s charging stations.
“It’s one thing to build one Supercharger site, but it’s a totally different thing to build 100 at a time, or have 40 or 50 in construction at any given time. Black & Veatch brought an ability to be able to expand rapidly, bring on the resources necessary and also manage the construction of a complex project like that – all concurrently.”
Kevin Kassekert, Director, Supercharger Deployment and Energy Efficiency, Tesla Motors, Inc.
Online Project Management
Tesla Supercharger sites require large electrical switchgear designs that supply 500 to 1,000 kilovolt-amperes (kVA). Tesla is in most U.S. states, and a majority of electric utilities impose a different set of rules for compliance. Black & Veatch provided a solution to this challenge with rapid deployment of large, concurrent and geographically diverse telecommunications infrastructure.
Black & Veatch was able to meet Tesla's demand for rapid installation of the Supercharger technology. The two companies collaborated on the development of an online project management tool. The tool allowed team members to monitor progress through real-time status reports and a map view of project sites across the United States.
Black & Veatch took the development lead on the Supercharger sites through design, permitting and construction. Once constructed and energized, Tesla engineers guided the commissioning of the Supercharger equipment and final validation of site functionality.
“Black & Veatch has been a key partner on the rollout of the Supercharger network specifically in three main areas: the speed at which they move, the scale at which they can operate and the quality of their work. Overwhelmingly, it’s been a very positive experience.”
Mateo Jaramillo, Director, Powertrain Business Development, Tesla Motors, Inc.