While the concept of combining energy storage technologies and solar panels holds appeal for many and becomes increasingly feasible, some companies are stepping out and offering hybrid solar and storage systems now as a way to differentiate themselves in the market.
Intermountain Wind and Solar in Utah focuses on the hybrid market, producing several varieties of battery and solar combinations, including portable solar generators that can provide power in the event of a disaster.
The company is also increasing marketing efforts for its fully-integrated battery back-up systems that allow customers to send excess energy back to the grid for credits on their bills, while also storing power in batteries to provide backup electricity that will operate independent of the grid in the event of a power outage.
The system combines the cost savings typical grid-tied systems offer with the security of backup power that so many solar array owners realized they didn’t have after Superstorm Sandy wiped out power on the East Coast for weeks last winter.
The company has been offering hybrid systems for some time, but has invested n improving the technology.
“We want to increase the amount of power that back up batteries can provide,” said Doug Shipley, founder of Intermountain Wind and Solar. “By providing more power, homes and businesses can continue functioning through extended power outages and medical outlets can retain full functionality in the case of disaster or emergency.”
Intermountain has recently invested in developing more powerful solar panels. Using the more efficient solar panels has allowed the company to produce a hybrid solar and energy storage system that is the same physical size it was before, but with greater energy output, according to a release from the company.
Intermountain’s focus on hybrid systems has helped it to grow quickly in a competitive field.
“As solar installers in Utah, we want to continue providing accessible and efficient alternative resources,” Shipley said, “whether they are full functioning or back up.”