Canada-based energy utility firm PowerStream has teamed-up with Sunverge Energy to develop a pilot solar storage programme that is expected to lower home electricity bills and offer outage protection to customers.
If successful, the programme will help Ontario-based PowerStream reduce the overall power consumption in its service area by 535,440MWh by 2020, which is equal to the consumption of more than 62,000 homes.
PowerStream board chairperson and City of Vaughan mayor Maurizio Bevilacqua said: "This pilot project with Sunverge is a further testament to PowerStream’s commitment to cost-effectively deliver cleaner and more reliable power to our 375,000 customers.
"The Sunverge systems will allow us to use rooftop-generated solar power more efficiently and reward our customers through significant bill savings."
The pilot will see installations of rooftop solar panels across 20 homes during peak power demands, along with Sunverge systems, which have battery-stored power.
Sunverge’s cloud-based software will be used to manage new installations through an integrated virtual power plant (VPP).
The technology will enable the utility to manage the multiple units like a single and larger solar energy, or energy storage facility. The only difference will be that the power distribution will be carried out at the point of load.
Systems will include ‘11.4-KWh batteries, power electronics, and multiple energy inputs in a UL-certified appliance that is controlled by cloud-based software’.
Batteries will support the additional energy requirements by the users during periods of peak demand and also during the power outages. Users will be able to save costs under Ontario’s new proposed net metering programme by using more power from their own rooftop solar installations and be less dependent on grid’s energy supply.
The utility is looking forward to large-scale implementation of the technology in order to minimise the extent of power outages and lower distribution system upgrade requirements.
Sunverge Energy co-founder and CEO Ken Munson said: "This is a win-win for both PowerStream and its customers by paving the way for significantly increased use of green, rooftop solar power that will also be more reliable and save consumers money."
Image: Utility-grade energy storage system with cloud-based management software. Photo: courtesy of Sunverge Energy.