Sydney-based solar data start-up Solar Analytics has been awarded $2.1 million in grant funding from the federal government’s Australian Renewable Energy Agency, to fast-track its rooftop PV monitoring technology.
The company, which is now part owned by AGL Energy, and developed the gentailer’s Solar Command App, has plans to install its smart solar monitoring technology in 25,000 homes by 2020 – so far, it has signed up are than 12,000 users in Australia.
The technology tracks the performance of residential solar PV systems, reporting the results back to the householder as well as identifying and correcting faults and inefficiencies – measures that have been shown to increase the energy yield of a rooftop solar system by as much as 15 per cent.
According to Solar Analytics’ estimates, more than half of all Australian rooftop solar systems are underperforming, while another 14 per cent are not working at all at any given point in time. Hardly any solar households – 5-10 per cent – use monitoring technology.
Solar Analytics is also eyeing overseas markets, after its solar monitoring hardware – the award-winning, Australian made Auditor metering device made by Solar Analytics partner WattWatchers – was approved, last month, for installation in Canada and the US.
“As more and more homes put on solar and energy storage, data becomes even more critical,” said Solar Analytics CEO Stefan Jarnason. “It let’s you decide when you should be charging the battery and when you should be using the energy in the home, and when you should be sending the energy back to the grid.”
“We also take in live weather data and we put all of that together so that we can then give useful information, valuable information back to the home owner,” he said.
“We can tell you what energy you’ve produced, what you should have produced, and if (your system is underperforming), we can tell you what to do about it.”