From pv magazine USA
In the United States, and particularly in Texas, where grid infrastructure is becoming increasingly unreliable, Americans are struggling to beat the heat as peak temperatures lead to peak energy demand and scheduled rolling blackouts on the energy grid. Simultaneously, energy prices are increasing, especially during peak demand hours, making this summer a costly and uncomfortable situation for many.
Electriq Power, the provider of the home battery PowerPod 2, said its battery can both provide backup power during blackouts, but also provide smart time-of-use charging and discharging cycles that insulate homeowners from expensive peak demand charges. Home storage also alleviates pressure on the grid, making it more reliable and prices more stable for the surrounding community.
The lithium ferro-phosphate PowerPod 2 battery comes in a few different formats, each with a continuous 7.6 kW AC power output and an instant 9.12 kW output. The battery has 10, 15, and 20 kWh usable capacity configurations. It can shift between backup power, time of use, and self-supply operating modes, and it has a max DC efficiency of 97.6%.
Batteries are often placed in the garage or in a cool, dark place on the exterior of the home. The PowerPod 2 is rated for outdoor use with a NEMA 3R certification. It is also UL9540 and UL9540A certified. It can operate between –15 C to 55 C and at a maximum altitude of nearly 3,000 meters. The battery unit measures 27.5 cm x 50 cm x 9 cm while the accompanying inverter is sized at 18 cm x 33.7 cm x 7 cm. Both components are warrantied for 10 years by Electriq Power.
Powering Puerto Rico
Last month, Electriq Power announced it was chosen as the exclusive hardware and software supplier for Barrio Eléctrico, an organization that works with community partners to install solar and storage systems in Puerto Rico. The island suffers frequent power outages and heavy storms that affect the centralized grid, so the distributed solar and storage offer an alternative to keep the lights on.
Rooftop solar and a home battery can also reduce electricity costs, which is a major concern in Puerto Rico. Over 750,000 households on the island are considered low- or moderate income, but electricity rates on the island are among the highest for US residents. By reducing the need for energy generated from the grid, home batteries installed as part of this program can substantially lower a family’s utility bill, said Electriq power.
“Puerto Rico’s ongoing struggle with stable electricity makes the island an ideal location for home storage and solar,” said Frank Magnotti, CEO of Electriq Power. “Thanks to Barrio Eléctrico, there are greater opportunities for homes on the island to embrace independent electricity generation.”
“The talent and natural resources in Puerto Rico are the ingredients for a robust economy, but the unreliable electricity is a primary factor holding back economic development. The first step to solving the electricity crisis is grass-roots action in each community. Our program supports individuals in taking control of their electricity needs, while it simultaneously builds the community’s capacity to design and have a voice in the electric service of tomorrow. Because of allies like Electriq Power, which provides the fundamental components of our high quality, affordable systems, we have been able to initiate community and municipal actions towards a brighter, more equitable future.” Lauren Rosenblatt, founder and acting CEO of Barrio Eléctrico
The need for distributed energy resources and backup power resonates in the continental US, too. Grid reliability reports warned of summertime outages in the Midwest, California and Texas, especially as a widespread drought in the west limits hydropower production and a mismatch between supply and peak demand persists.
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