Starting in April, Centrosolar will begin offering solar energy storage systems, providing round-the-clock access to electricity produced by photovoltaic plants. The new Cenpac Storage system comprises a storage battery, a battery inverter and an intelligent energy manager. Based on current needs, solar energy is supplied to power consumers, is used to charge the battery or is fed into the grid. While households without storage capabilities typically use a maximum of 30 per cent of the solar power themselves, this figure can be more than doubled where storage systems are in place.
Centrosolar has attracted experienced partners such as SMA and Hoppecke for the new storage solution. The batteries used in the system rely on tried-and-tested lead-gel technology and are available in three practical sizes: 3.7 kWh, 6.0 kWh and 7.4 kWh. The battery sizes have been specifically designed for single-family households where PV plants with operating capacities of up to 6 kWp, 9 kWp and 10.5 kWp are installed. The batteries have a service life of approximately 2,500 cycles at a depth of discharge of 50% and are therefore particularly well suited for solar applications with high charge and discharge loads. Using a 7.4 kWh Cenpac Storage system, a four-person family with annual electricity consumption of 4,000 kWh is able to meet up to 85 per cent of their daily electricity needs with solar power. “The storage system allows plant operators to draw power whenever they need it – whether the sun is shining or not. Not only does storage improve the energy-related benefits of a solar plant, it also guarantees that the operator's personal power needs are met," explains Dr Axel Müller-Groeling, member of the Centrosolar Management Board.
The storage battery is complemented by the Sunny Island battery inverter, which has been specifically developed for own consumption by SMA. This is installed in the same way as a PV inverter and is more than flexible enough to work with different battery sizes. The Sunny Home Manager looks after the overall operation of the system. This energy management system regulates the flow of energy between the solar plant, the storage system, the household and the power grid. It monitors each and every component to ensure energy is managed intelligently. The Sunny Home Manager recommends particular actions based on the learned consumption profile of the household, the local weather forecast and the resulting generation forecast for the PV plant.
Cenpac Storage is ready to go off-the-shelf, requiring no design work by the installer. Even installers with no experience with storage solutions can connect the system to new or existing solar plants without difficulty. Cenpac Storage will be available from April onwards.
Date: Mar 12, 2013