Electric car manufacturer Tesla Motors is building a data center as part of its $5 billion battery plant in Nevada.

According to Reno Gazette-Journal, the first ‘gigafactory’ will include a fully-featured server farm, with construction having started in September.

Gigafactory 1 - artist's impression
Gigafactory 1 - artist’s impression – Tesla Motors

Modern manufacturing

Elon Musk’s Tesla is the most successful American automotive start-up of the past 90 years. It is credited with being the first company to create an electric car that would appeal to traditional car enthusiasts , and its automatic assembly lines are famous the world over.

The Gigafactory 1 – Musk is already planning to build more – will be located at the Tahoe-Reno Industrial Center, and offer 10 million square feet of industrial space once fully complete. It is expected to produce 35GWh worth of Lithium-ion batteries annually by 2020.

The plant will make not just car batteries, but also residential and commercial storage batteries for the company’s Tesla Energy initiative.

Tesla Powerpack - a 100 kWh battery storage system, which, according to Musk, is infinitely scalable – has been proposed as a means to power data centers, ensure backup power and help reduce peak time energy costs. This approach is currently being tested by Amazon Web Services, among others.

The construction of Gigafactory 1 started in the middle of 2014, divided into dozens of multi-million dollar projects.

According to the planning permissions seen by the Reno Gazette-Journal, one of such projects is a data center. Tesla started building the facility in September, and is likely to finish it by the time first batteries come off assembly lines in spring 2016.

We have contacted Storey County, Nevada, to find out the details of the project and will update this story once we hear more.