Optimising Self-Generated Power

The new partnership between Navitron and Solax will see UK homes make the most of their self-generated power.
Published: Mon 25 Aug 2014

The home energy storage space is heating up in response to a growing need to optimize solar power generation. Energy storage has always been the missing link for those who are generating their own power off-grid using solar power mostly. As solar technology and installation prices plummet [Engerati-Cheaper Solar Installations-Watershed Moment for Distributed Generation and Renewables], researchers have been working hard to find storage solutions in order to optimize this surge in solar power. As the need for power is highest when the sun is not at its brightest (early morning and evening), valuable solar energy generated during the day has been going to waste.

Companies respond to energy storage needs

Companies such as Navitron – one of the UK’s leading suppliers and installers of renewable technology and Solax, with its range of inverters, have collaborated to install the Solax X-Hybrid energy storage system in thousands of properties across the country.

Economical and user-friendly, the Solax X-Hybrid is a groundbreaking battery storage solution that converts and directs energy where and when it is required. The device makes it possible to utilise solar power at any time – including when most homes tend to have the highest energy consumption.

Stephen Knight, Commercial Director for Navitron, commented: “As we know, solar panels generate the most energy during the day when the sun is shining and when most households tend to use the least energy. Solax’s X-Hybrid solves this by storing excess electricity in the battery, only feeding into the grid once the battery is fully charged. We’re excited to be entering into a relationship with Solax and hope that together we can further progress the future of sustainability.”

Navitron also offers a wide range of solar panels from the world’s top manufacturers, all installed by highly-trained and Microgeneration Certification Scheme accredited installers – meaning installations are eligible to earn government incentives through the Feed-In Tariff.

Creating independency

Capable of saving money on homeowners’ utilities bills by increasing the proportion of self-use electricity generated by a photovoltaic system from 30% to more than 70%, the X-Hybrid helps homeowners save money by becoming independent from rising energy prices, protecting households from power outages and reducing stress on the grid by minimising homes’ solar power feed.

Solax’s other inverters, developed for domestic solar photovoltaic installations, offer 97.6% efficiency – the highest on the market today – as well as a wide MPPT voltage range to allow for more energy harvesting and a maximum input voltage of 580V.

Knight says, “We believe that sustainability is everyone’s business, so by embracing the latest green technologies, homeowners can make the most of their self-generated power and cut their carbon footprints by more than half.”

This latest innovation and collaboration forms part of a growing global energy storage market [Engerati-Finally! An Energy Storage Market Emerges].

Utility in a box

While many energy storage solutions are still grid connected, there may come a time when the majority of prosumers decide to go off-grid completely. Major investment bank, Morgan Stanley, picked up on this future trend in its report which indicates that the growing energy storage market could threaten utilities’ traditional business models [Engerati-Distributed Generation-A Force to be Reckoned With]. Rocky Mountain Institute’s report, The Economics of Grid Defection also points to the power (excuse the pun) of solar and batteries joining. Together they can make the electric grid optional for many customers—without compromising reliability and increasingly at prices cheaper than utility retail electricity. Equipped with a solar-plus-battery system, customers can take or leave traditional utility service with what amounts to a “utility in a box.”

While the search is on for quality cost-effective home energy storage solutions, the utility needs to come up with an attractive package to keep its customers - whether it’s on or off-grid. A recent statement from Atul Mahajan, the CEO of Oshawa Power and Utilities sums it up in a nutshell: “I have three suggestions to all utilities: first, is to adapt and evolve and the other two are not important.”