Monthly Archives

April 2016

Residential Energy Solutions Launched

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Named the ‘Icon Home Energy Hub’, the solution is made up of roof-mounted solar panels with a 3.1 kWp capacity together with an inverter, which converts the direct-current electricity generated by the panels into alternating current

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Memeburn – SA energy solution taking on Tesla Powerwall

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We spoke to Memeburn’s Graham van der Merwe in April 2016 about how the Icon Home Energy Hub works. We also discussed how you can save with different components of the system, and our motivation for engineering this specific solution for South Africans. Read a few article excerpts below:

Move over Tesla and Powerwall, because you’ve got competition in SA. Announced yesterday, Energy Partners unveiled their Icon Home Energy Hub, an all-in-one solution for storing and using solar energy in the home.

The inverter draws power through the solar panels and manages the loads when it needed, while charging the battery for night-time or blackout usage. Due to the way the devices are designed, the inverter can make sure 100% of any solar energy stored is used in order to reduce wastage. Depending on the settings, or how low on power the battery is, the inverter will also draw from the electrical grid, as well as use it to charge loads.

Icon Home Energy Hub Inverter & Battery

Along with its internal design, the aesthetics of the devices have been designed with homeowners in mind as the battery and inverter are the only visible components. Each of these is housed in a white and black casing, which is reminiscent of Apple products. They feature a single LED colour strip, which is the only interface between the user and the power readings. The inverter can display red, blue, and green for different messages, while the battery shows how full it is.

According to the company, which is backed by PSG Group, this is the first inverter designed for the South African market. Even though it’s developed in SA, it’s not all manufactured here. The company is hoping to manufacture the next version’s inverters in SA.

To read the full Memeburn article by Graham van der Merwe, click here.

Engineering News – New residential energy solution launched

By | Energy Partners in the Press | No Comments

We spoke to Engineering News in April 2016 after the launch of our Icon Home Energy Hub system for the residential market. Alan Matthews, our managing director, explained how the system fits into the household and how modular deployment benefits homeowners’ pockets. Have a read below:

The full household solution includes a hot-water tank, a heat pump and a remote monitoring platform allowing the user to monitor the status of their system directly through a mobile app. However, the company has opted for a modular deployment approach and is willing, for instance, to install only aspects of the overall offering, depending on a homeowner’s requirements.
The full solution will cost R167 000 before value added tax and is designed primarily for medium-sized households with a monthly electricity bill of above R1 500.

MD Alan Matthews says such households will save up to 70% on their monthly electricity bill and earn a 16% return on their investment over seven years.

The residential offering, he adds, has been developed over the past 18 months to cater for homeowners keen to “take control of their energy” in a context of rising tariffs and supply disruptions. However, it has been has also been sized with due regard to the prevailing lack of certainty about the rules associated with households feeding surplus electricity back into the grid.

“We have opted for a modular approach that enables households to increase their capacity over time should it make sense to do so,” Matthews explains.

To read the full Engineering News article, click here.

BizNis Africa – SA’s first residential energy storage solution launched

By | Energy Partners in the Press | No Comments

When we launched our Icon Home Energy Hub in April of 2016, our MD, Alan Matthews, spoke to Biznis Africa about this unique South African home solution. Alan explained why we embarked on developing the product to assist South African home owners with a solution for controlling their energy spend, especially when subjected to unreliable supply during load shedding by Eskom. Read some excerpts from the article below.

“Like our corporate clients, they too were at the mercy of tariff increases. But, unlike corporate clients, they did not have teams of engineers and strong financial skills to draw on.”

This is why we spent the last 18 months creating this unique solution for homeowners, he says. “Our solution enables home owners to take control of their energy, by supplying a set of reliable products that form a full home energy solution which combines lighting, water heating and renewable energy.”

The Energy Partner’s solution enables a family sized home to save up to 70% of its electricity bill and earn from a 16% return on their investment.

The Icon Home Energy Hub consists of two components: the Energy Hub Inverter and the Lithium Ion Phosphate Battery. “The inverter is a critical component in any solar energy solution. Its main function is to take the electricity generated (DC) from the solar panels and convert it into an energy form that can be utilised in the home (AC). The inverter also integrates with the battery to allow all excess generated energy to be stored in the batteries for later usage.”

The most recognisable global competitor to the Icon is the Tesla Powerwall battery, paired with a Solar edge inverter, he says. “When this product was launched in South Africa recently it received a lot of attention, but the Tesla solution is focussed around the battery – which is 6.4 kWh. Our solution includes a smaller battery, but also includes a heat pump and an extra-large hot water tank. This means that it delivers almost double the saving and costs less.”

He says that besides the energy bill reduction benefit, the solution also reduces the homeowner’s carbon footprint and environmental impact and makes the user independent of the grid. “The user can power essential loads for several hours, even if the grid is off, a feature that is simply not possible with grid-tied inverters.”

The solution is extremely flexible, for example, it can be installed without batteries and then 3.6 kWh or 6 kWh of battery capacity can be added as needed. It also includes a remote monitoring platform allowing the user to monitor the status of their system directly on their mobile app.”

Read the full Biznis Africa article here.

CNBC Africa Power Lunch

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Allan Matthews, our managing director, spoke to CNBC Africa in April 2016.

Solar PV installations should be fully considered by homeowners, to receive the energy returns expected. Partnering solar panels with inverters to create usable energy, as well as batteries to store excess, is the best solution. They also discuss the possibility of feeding back excess energy into the grid. Energy Partners Home Solutions offer a full home energy analysis, with an holistic approach. Get in touch to discuss alternatives for your home.