From the category archives:

Batteries & Energy Storage

Solar energy self-consumption explained

August 22, 2016
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When it comes to solar power in Australia, lots of things have changed in the last few years. If you’re currently shopping around for a solar system, perhaps the most important thing you need to keep in mind is this: You’ll get the most out of your solar panels by consuming the energy they produce while it […]

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Victorian utility to deploy distributed batteries to defer network upgrade costs

August 22, 2016
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Victorian utility United Energy will partner with Melbourne start-up GreenSync to deliver a community-based demand response and energy storage project on the Mornington Peninsula, to defer the need for costly network upgrades in the popular tourist area. GreenSync says the five-year project will engage and incentivise households, businesses and community groups from Rosebud to Portsea […]

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Kilowatts vs kilowatt-hours in solar power & battery storage: Power, energy or capacity?

August 18, 2016
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If you’re shopping around for solar panels or a battery storage for your home, you’re undoubtedly come across the terms ‘kilowatt’ (abbreviated as kW) and kilowatt-hour (kWh). These terms might be a bit confusing at first, so we’ve written this article to explain these terms and make them easy to understand. Power vs energy (vs capacity) When […]

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Three-year trial will pit 8x lithium battery products against one another

August 18, 2016
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A three-year battery storage trial that will test eight leading technologies under Australian conditions was officially launched in the ACT on Wednesday, at the Canberra Institute of Technology’s Bruce Campus. Over the course of the trial, which is being conducted by ITP Renewables, lithium-ion battery chemistries and products will be tested and compared against claims […]

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Sonnen’s Eco in Australia: An all-in-one, modular, German-made battery storage system for homes

August 15, 2016
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Sonnen is a German home battery storage system developer that has one of the most robust & attractive products on the Australian market. The Sonnen Eco is an expandable, all-in-one battery storage unit that includes Sonnen’s proprietary energy management software, promising to deliver significant value to homes that install one. This article provides an overview […]

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Installing a battery bank for a grid-connected home? Smaller is probably better

August 11, 2016
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If you are in a grid-connected home and want to get batteries for your rooftop solar system, you’re probably wondering how much capacity to have installed. Although the ultimate answer comes down to your personal preferences and goals, what about if you’re primarily after a good return on your investment? In this article we’ve endeavoured […]

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Solar battery storage in South Australia

August 10, 2016
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Roughly one in three homes in South Australia is equipped with a solar PV system. While the main motivating factors for going solar to date have been generous government incentives (especially feed-in tariffs), these days low solar system prices are the main reason SA homes are going solar. The need for these homes to use as much of […]

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7 good reasons to install battery storage now

August 9, 2016
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There are now dozens of home battery storage product options to choose from on the Australian market. On average, price points are still high, but there are plenty of good reasons to have batteries installed on your home. As a counterweight to our previous article about reasons to wait to install batteries, in this piece […]

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5 arguments for solar-without-storage: Why would you wait to install batteries?

August 5, 2016
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Solar battery storage is a hot topic in Australia these days thanks to a combination of global technology and market developments, as well as the peculiar story rooftop solar in Australia. Energy storage system costs are coming down steadily, and early adopters are already having battery banks installed in their homes. But for many Australian […]

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Thinking about going off-grid? Keep these points in mind

August 4, 2016
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With the dawn of the age of (nearly) affordable battery storage, more and more Australian homes are considering the possibility of disconnecting from the electricity grid; or the first time, off-grid living looks like it may be feasible virtually anyone – even for urban households. Solar Choice has conducted some desktop analysis into the minimum amount […]

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What is battery ‘end of life’?

August 3, 2016
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‘End of life’ is one of the key specifications that you should keep in mind as you compare battery storage options for your home. How is battery end of life defined, and why is it so important? Defining battery end of life If you have a battery storage system installed on your home, its lifespan […]

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Retrofitting battery storage to an existing solar PV system: What to consider

August 2, 2016
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Lots of Australian homes are expected to install battery storage in the coming years. Many of these homes will install brand new solar-plus-storage systems, but quite a few will be retrofitting batteries onto a pre-existing system. What do you need to keep in mind for a battery storage system retrofit? Considerations for retrofitting energy storage […]

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Solar becoming competitive with wind as ACT moves towards renewables target

August 2, 2016
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Submissions to the ACT’s latest “next generation” renewable energy tender indicate solar power is now competitive with wind energy, possibly suggesting a future shift in Australia’s roll-out of renewable energy technologies. ACT environment and energy minister Simon Corbell told the Clean Energy Summit that the reverse auction of more than 200MW of renewable energy capacity […]

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Ergon publishes 10-point ‘reality check’ list for would-be off-gridders

July 29, 2016
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Queensland utility Ergon energy has decided to address the issue of grid electricity defection by publishing a 10-step guide for consumers considering the idea. Ergon, which doubles as the main network operator and retailer in Queensland and services regional and sometimes remote areas, is likely to be at the forefront of the move to quit […]

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How interest in home battery storage has grown in Australia (proof in charts)

July 28, 2016
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There are only so many ways to start writing an article with some variation of ‘interest in battery storage in Australia is growing rapidly’ without repeating yourself, but that’s exactly what I have valiantly attempted to do over the past 1.5 years. Here, I’ve put together some charts that attempt to explain why I’ve felt compelled […]

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NSW Solar Bonus Scheme feed-in tariffs end this year: What are your options?

July 26, 2016
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On December 31 2016, recipients of NSW Solar Bonus Scheme will cease to receive bill credits for their exported solar energy. The Solar Bonus Scheme (which closed to new applications in 2011) offered 60c per kilowatt-hour or 20c/kWh, depending on the signup date. Once the scheme ends, these rates will drop significantly, to as low as low […]

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RedFlow’s ZCell: An Aussie-designed flow battery for homes

July 25, 2016
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RedFlow’s ZCell is currently one of the most talked-about battery storage products on the Australian market. Slated to be available in Australia in the very near future, the battery has significant advantages over most of the other products on the market – and it sure to appeal to the tech-happy ‘early adopter’ market despite its price […]

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‘Genie is out of the bottle’ for large-scale solar & storage projects

July 25, 2016
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Australia could host some of the world’s biggest solar and battery storage projects, after local infrastructure investor Lyon Group revealed plans to develop a pipeline of more than 300MW of solar and up to 60MW of battery storage. The first new project is planned for South Australia, with a 100MW solar PV plant to be combined […]

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LG Chem introduces stackable, modular lithium battery

July 22, 2016
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South Korean battery maker LG Chem has released its new generation systems in Australia, promising they will offer more choice, and be cheaper, smaller, lighter, and with improved aesthetics. LG Chem, which claims nearly half of the nascent but rapidly growing Australian grid-connected market, is offering low voltage and high voltage options to Australian households, […]

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Can you go off-grid with solar and energy storage?

July 20, 2016

These days, almost everyone considering solar and battery storage is wondering if it’s possible to disconnect from the grid altogether; ‘going off-grid’ seems to be all the rage. Just how feasible is it for the average household to go off grid – and is it really worth it? How easy is it to go off-grid with […]

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Melbourne ‘mini-suburb’ has a Tesla Powerwall in every home (units now on sale!)

July 18, 2016
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Plans for what could be the world’s first “Tesla town” – a mini-suburb on the outskirts of the Melbourne CBD whose new-build homes will include rooftop solar and Tesla battery storage – are being unveiled by local property group Glenvill, as the green development’s first 60 homes went on sale last week. The new 16.46 […]

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