SunCulture Solar Inc. (Mountain View, CA, U.S.) on September 22nd, 2016 announced the launch of “SolPad”, a new series of integrated energy products for solar homes or off-grid photovoltaic (PV) applications.
According to the company, SolPad’s integrated solar PV panel combines battery storage, an inverter system and intelligent software into a single device.
“SolPad revolutionizes personal energy by bringing together the sustainable smart home, solar and energy storage into a simple, gorgeous and integrated device,” said Christopher Estes, CEO and Chief Product Architect at SunCulture Solar, Inc., designer and manufacturer of SolPad.
“More than just a solar panel”
SolPad Home offers homeowners control over their electricity generation, energy storage and usage. While SolPad Home is designed to be a gorgeous rooftop solar solution, it is much more than just a solar panel, SunCulture Solar emphasizes.
According to the company, each SolPad Home panel is like a smart-energy computer, with each device being its own energy powerhouse that is completely self-sufficient. Homeowners can start with one SolPad and easily add more with minimal installation time.
Battery storage at the panel level
SolPad Home panels store both solar and grid energy with solid-state battery technology. This battery technology is inherently safer than standard lithium-ion-based batteries, SunCulture Solar says.
Each SolPad device is equipped with its own “solar micro-storage,” or built-in battery storage at the panel level, and the solid-state low-voltage battery design is optimized for safe rooftop operation.
SolPad’s Home’s “flexgrid” inverter is designed to seamlessly integrate with built-in solid-state “solar micro-storage,” and this innovative combination allows SolPad to operate with electrically optimized power efficiency.
A personal solar micro-grid
Flexgrid can automatically detect when to charge from the sun or charge from the local utility grid, adjusting for cloudy or rainy days, as well as changing local electricity rates.
During the most expensive daytime hours, SolPad Home will switch to stored battery power, then switch back to grid power when rates are low. Flexgrid will also detect when there’s a power outage or blackout and safely disconnect itself from the grid.
Once off the grid, SolPad automatically forms a personal solar micro-grid that will keep delivering power to specific lights and appliances.
“Connect” is a wireless system that links two or more SolPad Home panels on the roof, completely eliminating the need for any complicated cabling or wiring, simplifying the installation and greatly reducing cost and installation time.
According to the producer, SolPad’s fully integrated product design approach reduces the total cost of installed solar and energy storage by up to 50% when compared with other existing product offerings.
SolControl’s interactive user interface (UI) makes homeowners aware of when and how they are consuming energy. It puts cost-saving control into a gamified and easy-to-use smartphone application. SolControl also helps conserve electricity by autonomously learning usage habits and intuitively providing suggestions to further optimize power consumption.
SolPad also acts as an internet hot spot
One of the most revolutionary features of SolPad is that it also acts as a powerful internet hot spot. Thus, consumers can have power and the web in one place. This feature is especially valuable in developing countries where both power and the internet are not readily available.
For the developing world, SolPad can bring power to those in need where a grid infrastructure is nonexistent.
SunCulture Solar is selecting its manufacturing partners for SolPad and SolPad Home, and will bring SolPad to market in the second half of 2017.