Skip to main content

Home Solar Introduces New Issues With Popularity

Tesla's battery tech may be headed to your home next

Installing Solar Panels at your home as proved to be a cost efficient way of reducing your power bill. Especially as governments have promoted the micro-generation of excess power being sold back into the grid. In some areas this means that credits earned in the summer for generating power can more than offset the cost of buying power from the grid in the winter.

Great for the home-owner, not so good for the power companies, especially as the popularity of the solution grows.

In areas of high supply some districts report 50% of community power requirements are met by micro-generators. As that figure rises the power company needs to start backing off its own generation systems. The way that figure rises is interesting for the future of the power companies. As a household gains solar panelling its requirements for grid supplied energy fall off and the supply of micro-generated electricity rises. Eventually supply will outstrip demand and the power company will be required to either store the excess electricity using hydro-pumping stations, or dump it across the consumer load by raising the output voltage.

And there are a fixed number of pumping stations that can store that excess.

For the power company dumping the power will be a net loss as its required to buy the solar power from consumers at a fixed rate. With no net consumption and power being dumped it's making a loss. The only way to recover that loss is to raise prices in the winter months. Or stop buying the energy from micro-generators.

Until such time as Solar Panel systems are supplied with micro-storage systems to store the power against future demand the power companies, it's customers and governments will be in conflict.

Whether that proves to be Tesla's home battery pack or some form of flywheel system remains to be seen. Whatever it is, when it arrives it will be game changing for consumers and suppliers in areas ripe for the exploitation of solar energy.



Popular posts from this blog

F1: Robert Kubica Impresses In Renault Test Run

The car may be old but its the performance of the driver that's the story here. Robert Kubica returned to F1, after a fashion, earlier this week with an extensive test run in a 2012 Lotus Renault F1 car at Valencia.
The age of the car and the circuit were likely determined by F1's current rules which ban testing, but the reason for Kubica being in the car is far more interesting. Considered by many to be a potential World Champion and certainly one of the fastest drivers of his generation, Kubica's F1 career seemed to be over after a 2011 crash whilst driving in the Rally of Andora. His Skoda Fabia was penetrated by a guardrail in the high speed accident partially severing his right arm.
Up until last year Kubica has been competing in rallying, with the expectation that the limited movement in his repaired arm would prohibit a return to single seater racing.
So this week's test is both interesting and confusing. Interesting because Kubica completed 115 laps of the ret…

F1: Robert Kubica's Williams Test Asks More Questions Than It Answers

Comparing driver's times at a tyre evaluation test like last week's Abu Dhabi event is difficult at the best of times, but when trying to assess the performance of a driver who has been out of the sport for six years, that difficulty level is raised even higher.
On the face of it Robert Kubica's test for Williams was a success. Fastest of the three Williams drivers present the headlines look promising. However, taking into consideration the different tyres used to set those times muddies the water considerably.
Kubica ran a three lap qualifying simulation on the new 'hyper-soft' tyre - which should have given him a two-second advantage. Correcting for tyres it would appear that Kubica was significantly slower than Sergei Sorotkin - who was on the harder 'soft' tyre - and marginally quicker than Lance Stroll, the team's only contracted driver.

Stroll's family fortune currently funds Williams, so there' no chance that he will be anywhere but in a…

Panos Panay's Defence Of Microsoft Surface Hardware Sounds Eerily Familiar

This weekend I went out with my ten year old daughter to select a laptop for her school year beginning in January. The schools requirements are quite specific, requiring a Windows 10 device, with a preference for a touchscreen and a stylus. She chose a Surface Pro, after trying a large number of different options. Having seen the way I use my own Surface Pro - and tried it herself there was only ever going to be two options - and the other was a Surface Laptop.
I tell you this so that you understand I am a buyer of Microsoft's products through choice, not compulsion. I'm on my third Surface device now. 
So when Panos Panay dismissed reports of the death of the Surface hardware line, I was very interested to see exactly how strong these denials were. Especially how they reflect what has gone before. To whit: Windows 10 Mobile.
Panay claimed that Microsoft is in hardware for the long haul. Almost exactly mirroring the words of Terry Myerson, when he claimed Windows Mobile was g…