#1 March 1, 2016 13:16:25

morrisok
From: Sussex
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Solar plus Storage plus Tarrif

Hi all,

I, as many of you have been keeping an eye on the storage market with bated breath, waiting for the time where a storage solution becomes cost effective. I have spoken to quite a few of the manufactures and installers to get the details of how it actually would work. One supplier pointed out something which I thought it was worth sharing.

Looking at Economy 7 or that sort of tarrif when solar plus storage prices comes down may allow us to get there a bit quicker. If you can have enough battery storage to last most or all of the day and you top up the batterys over night (especially in winter) then there should be very little need to buy electricity at peak rates. This in theory would work even for people not having solar!

I am yet to find a solution that works for me but I will certainly consider Economy 7 again when the time comes.



Kevin

URN 131, 3.92KWp 12x 327W E20 SunPower panels Sunnyboy 4000 inverter, facing ~south, no shading issues. Location: Sussex, http://pvoutput.org/list.jsp?userid=12216

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#2 March 20, 2016 09:11:23

dwilliams
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Solar plus Storage plus Tarrif

Hi, I too have been watching the development of battery storage for a while now but have always been put off by the idea of needing separate circuits or sockets to power things like the washing machine when the sun is shining. I have been waiting for a system that is fully integrated with the house mains and works during a power cut. Having visited the Edible Garden Show in Warwickshire last weekend I was drawn to one stand that had nothing to do with things edible or garden. I saw a system which does exactly what I want by intelligently feeding stored power into the house mains whenever demand exceeds generation. When demand does not exceed generation and the sun is shining then it tops the batteries up. Only when the batteries are full and demand is less than generation does the system export to the grid. One really nice touch is that during any power cut the system retains enough power in the batteries to fool the PV system that the mains is still there so generation is not interrupted. So, if a power cut occurred while the sun is shining then the house can run on self generated power alone.

http://generationrenewables.co.uk/solarstore-lithium-battery-storage

The company has been extremely responsive to my enquiries and questions and welcomes calls made to satisfied customers. The cost to add the technology with a single battery rack to my 3kWp system is a little over £4,000 and comes with a 10 year guarantee. I am highly likely to proceed to survey and place an order by the end of the month to take advantage of the free wifi module and data upgrade which would otherwise be another £400. I hope the link works but I am sure the company will respond quickly if you contact them.

Edited dwilliams (March 20, 2016 09:16:12)

Attachments:
attachment SolarStore Presenter for assessments.pdf (2.2 MB)

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#3 March 20, 2016 09:20:23

dwilliams
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Solar plus Storage plus Tarrif

Here is a picture I took at the show so you can see the size of the battery storage compartment 60x60x60cm .

http://www.solaxuk.co.uk/x-hybrid-battery-storage/

Edited dwilliams (March 20, 2016 09:26:16)

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attachment IMG_1892.JPG (1.1 MB)

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#4 March 21, 2016 06:20:35

Capetown
From: The Banks Of The River Mole
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fascinating dwilliams! Do you have any idea how much you could save over the 10 year period and if it will exceed the purchase price?



The gene pool has no lifeguard!

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#5 March 21, 2016 07:42:50

dwilliams
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Hi Capetown, the short answer is no but that really isn't my main consideration. What I do know is that the price I have been quoted is now sufficiently attractive for me to seriously consider adopting the technology. The real clincher for me is is the power cut mode. I have a marine aquarium which has cost about £3000 to set up with ongoing costs. I have a wife that just hates being cold and I know our gas central heating will not work without electricity. In the last year I have purchased a second £700 generator and a state of the art paraffin heater at £300 that will heat one room, but not provide hot water. So, I suppose I see £4,400 for a brand new, better performing intelligent inverter, with a 10 year guarantee (my current one will be out of warranty this September) as something of an insurance policy first and money saver second. To be frank, I just like the idea of being even more self sufficient and less impacted by the inevitable rises in electricity prices down the road. Oh, and I am absolutely fascinated by the technology too. David

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#6 March 21, 2016 08:09:22

Capetown
From: The Banks Of The River Mole
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Fair play to you David! :t



The gene pool has no lifeguard!

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#7 March 21, 2016 16:48:34

morrisok
From: Sussex
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Hi dwilliams,

From what I read you have to manually flick a switch to turn the battery electricity on and then supposedly have to flick another switch to make it use grid electricity when the power is restored so not sure what your gaining, at least in the UK where power cuts are few and far between and don't last long anyway.

I collect generation and usage figures in 1min intervals and then totaled for the day and have done some calculations based on real life figures (for me and my family). So when its really sunny everything I export fills up to the max capacity and uses it that evening. I average 12kwh a day over the year so probably a bit more than average as we have 2 young boys (eg lots of washing) but we use the solar power as much as possible which ofsets it.

Anyway, the savings are pretty small in monetary terms compared to the initial outlay. Even after 10 years I wouldn't be breaking even or close in todays prices (I'm assuming 12p a kwh).

Yearly savings
Potential Saving for 5kwh Storage System £151.47 (43% reduction in usage)
Potential Saving for 10kwh Storage System £240.42 (69% reduction in usage)
Potential Saving for 12kwh Storage System £264.02 (76% reduction in usage)

So my conclusion is although I am very keen on using the excess electricity, storage isn't financially viable at the minute. People with lower usage would have a smaller bill to start from so still isn't probably worth it and going off grid would be the only way of really saving money but not sure its THAT worth it.



Kevin

URN 131, 3.92KWp 12x 327W E20 SunPower panels Sunnyboy 4000 inverter, facing ~south, no shading issues. Location: Sussex, http://pvoutput.org/list.jsp?userid=12216

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#8 March 22, 2016 16:34:08

dwilliams
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Solar plus Storage plus Tarrif

Hi Kevin, and thanks for your post and information. I have now confirmed that power cut mode is essentially invoked as you say. Having watched the SolaX video on You Tube it looked like you had to switch to a separate circuit which supported all the low demand equipment. However, whilst this might have been the case I learn that after losing power the reason for a manual switch it to allow you to turn off or isolate all heavy demand that might have been going at the time. Once you throw the switch the entire house and PV system is re-energised from the batteries.

Is this worth it? Well in order to protect my marine aquarium I have to lay out trailing leads then fire up a generator but that's about it without a lot more frigging about … no gas CH, hot water, lights, TV, network, computer etc. etc. In our area we have had several 6 - 8 hour outages since the start of the year that I know of (due to underground cable faults miles away). Who knows what the future holds?

The company I have been corresponding with were interested in my scenario and suggested it would be simple enough to develop an automatic switch (at cost naturally) that would sense the power cut and switch over automatically. I guess it could switch back too. I could buy a UPS to do that but really it's not quite that critical. Still, it's nice to deal with people who are looking to improve the systems they sell.

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#9 March 23, 2016 09:36:49

bhommels
Registered: 2011-10-03
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For the power cut scenario, it might be useful to consider an inverter that can handle “islanding”, where it supplies a local power network that can, but does not have to be, connected to the grid.
In case of an automatic switch, I wonder how a possible phase difference is handled. Since we are talking AC, I wonder what happens when your local inverter is just on -230V and the mains gets reconnected at +230V, i.e. 180 degrees out of phase. It might be rather interesting for a very short while!

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