Australia is on the brink of a power revolution. Hot on the heels of the rapid uptake of residential photovoltaic (PV) solar power systems is the next logical step for this cutting edge technology: solar storage.
The opportunity to store energy generated from solar power - for later rather immediate use - will radically change the way Australians access, and pay, for power.
Leading the charge is the Tesla Powerwall, a sleek lithium ion battery that is set to start powering solar-ready Australian homes and small businesses from the end of 2015.
Conceived with both the solar power and electric car market in mind Tesla have taken the production of lithium ion batteries to the next level with the construction of their Gigafactory near Sparks, Nevada in the US.
The Gigafactory, so called for the potential power output it will be manufacturing, is expected to be operational by 2017 and producing more lithiumion batteries annually by 2020 than were produced worldwide as a whole in 2013.
This large scale manufacture will see battery prices continue to drop as solar power generation and storage rapidly rolls out across Australian homes and small businesses over the next 5 years.
A Battery of Benefits
Battery storage systems can almost double the self-consumption of solar PV for the average household and that translates into even bigger savings on power bills than simply installing solar alone.
Solar systems tend to generate more power in the middle of the day, when usage is at its lowest, so storage means getting the most from your solar system at all times of the day.
And with the reduction of feed in tariffs it also means you avoid selling excess energy back to the grid at a lower price than you end up buying it back for later in the day when you need it.
Reduced reliance on the network means lower power bills and less risk of power outage; and as battery prices continue to drop, so does the payback period of the initial investment.
Storage made simple
The Tesla Powerwall is a rechargeable lithium-ion battery similar in concept to the kind of battery that powers laptops, mobile phones and other portable devices.
Lithium ion batteries have technical and performance advantages over electrochemical alternatives such as car batteries. They are lighter, lose charge less readily, and need less maintenance as well as having a higher power density and longer useable life.
The challenge was scaling up the technology to meet the demands of residential and commercial power consumption and Tesla have done this with the Powerwall which integrates with PV solar systems to harness the sun's energy for recharging.
Options include a 10kWh weekly cycle (for back up) and 7kWh daily cycle model each of which comes with a 10 year guarantee and multiple battery options of up to 90kWh for the 10kWh battery and 63kWh for the 7kWh battery.
Estimates suggest that's enough power to run the average home for about eight hours.
If the Tesla Powerwall has set the standard, energy suppliers and electronics companies are stepping up to meet it with a host of solar storage solutions, many of which are currently or soon to be available in Australia.
Companies like CSA Services are preparing for solar storage by readying households with high performance, reliable and safe solar systems, like the SolarEdge, that are compatible with Tesla Powerwall.
Get the SolarEdge from CSA Services
Getting the most from a solar powered home battery can depend on the performance of the PV solar system it's used with.
That's where SolarEdge technology comes into its own. In traditional PV solar systems if one panel is operating sub-par then the energy output of the system as a whole is affected.
SolarEdge is a highly efficient PV solar solution that drastically reduces the risk of lost energy by using power optimisers to maximise the output from each panel individually.
And since SolarEdge is compatible with the Powerwall, this high performance PV solar solution is ready to take advantage of all the benefits of battery storage.
Find out more about SolarEdge here.
Be part of the solar revolution
The potential for solar powered batteries in the home goes beyond cheap electricity and an uninterrupted power supply.
Aside from powering all in-home and small business electrical appliances the large scale roll out of electric cars could become a reality as issues with accessing charging stations are overcome.
Communities and local councils too could benefit from solar storage with a knock on effect to rate payers thanks to reduced overhead costs, as well as job opportunities in a growth industry.
Remote and island communities won't have to rely entirely on expensive alternative fuel sources like diesel or LPG to generate power.
And a reduction in existing network maintenance and upgrade costs and the need to source expensive gas-powered electricity during periods of peak demand could mean cheaper electricity for those still on the grid.
Most importantly, if you invest wisely for the future, your household can enjoy savings by consuming the solar power you generate during the day, at night. You will be less reliant on the grid and use more clean power, which is good for the planet.
Talk to CSA Services now
CSA Services are experts in residential and commercial energy management. We can transform the way you use energy and our expertise is backed by exceptional customer service and many years' experience providing cost saving advice.
Our trusted team of professionals provide high quality reliable energy management solutions that fit your home and business needs.
For more information on the right solar system for you, request an information pack or "get help finding the right system for you".