Solar with battery storage is a sought-after option for many industrial, commercial and even residential consumers.
The huge interest in solar storage solution means that there a big market that is willing to adopt it. But it hasn’t yet. And the reason is obviously the cost!
In India, integrating batteries into your solar solution would cost 30% more than your typical solar system price. At this price, and considering the fact that batteries require more maintenance and may have to be replaced in a span of 5-7 years, your return on investment is pushed back a couple of years.
Challenges to growth of battery technology
- Some of these design challenges and intricacies arise from the need to calibrate battery voltage and capacity, battery chemistry, AC output voltage and phase, average and peak loads and grid-interactivity.
- The project cost is another major consideration and plays a significant role in figuring out the extent of battery required especially. Though added energy security seems like a no-brainer in most cases, the additional cost of energy storage and corresponding power electronics must be taken into account.
On a positive note, solar energy storage is getting cheaper, albeit very slowly. Whether it would be a major disruptor or not, only time will tell. Nevertheless, it would be appropriate to say that the energy storage industry is where the solar industry was 10 years ago.
Future of Battery Technology
There are some companies that are in the limelight when it comes to energy storage and they would probably dictate the future of energy storage. Some of them are listed below.
- Elon Musk’s Tesla with its reportedly (but also disputedly!) cost-competitive Powerwall and Powerpack products on offer to residential, commercial and utility-scale segments
- Germany’s Sonnen with its newest product SonnenCommunity which offers residential customers the opportunity to trade energy with each other
- Australian company Redflow with its ZCell technology targeting the domestic market for self-consumption
Read a Solar Mango article on Solar Invertors and Storage HERE.