Off Grid Power Systems
Installing an Off Grid power system may be a necessity or a lifestyle choice.
Either way you have much to gain from today’s increasingly efficient and affordable solar panels, inverters and batteries.
Renewable energy generation such as solar not only helps you create a sustainable lifestyle but benefits the environment. This also reduces noise, air pollution, and cuts diesel transport costs to save you time and energy.
Northern Rivers Renewable Energy understands the benefits and challenges of living off grid.
Who are We?
Proprietor Trent Rogers has done so for the past 20 years. Trent has become an industry leader in the design and installation of off grid solar systems. His passion for the environment and interest in utilising solar energy for everyday living has driven him to achieve the most efficient outcome and designs. Focusing always on the individuals unique needs and location to meet all year round energy requirements.
Northern Rivers Renewable Enegy takes pride in sourcing the best quality components available to deliver a quality system to our customers.
Northern Rivers Renewable Energy has extensive experience designing off grid systems for remote locations. Our priorities are designing a system that will meet your energy needs and be cost effective.
Northern Rivers Renewable Energy recognises that this is a major investment and therefore our staff will spend time with you to properly assess your location and design accordingly.
Steps Towards Energy Self-Sufficiency
An important first step towards energy self-sufficiency is to minimise any unnecessary power use. Ensure your home has a good passive solar design to reduce the need for heating or cooling and get appliances with high energy-efficiency ratings.
Consider for example, non-electrical alternatives for heating and cooking. When setting up a solar PV power system, we will assess the aspect of your building and design a system to best suit your location and energy usage.
If your roof does not have north-facing surfaces or is shaded too much, we have rack systems which may offer good alternatives. The system size, orientation and the tilt of the panels allow us to estimate the annual power generation of the system.
Off Grid System Design
During the design process one of our accredited system designers will provide you with a solar PV system design and specification. This will include things such as :
- Establishing your electrical loads over an average day using a load analysis
- Determining the type of panels
- Determining the size of your solar PV system
- Deciding the type of inverter
- Establishing the location of solar panels in relation to angles, available sunlight, shading and temperature.
How big does your system need to be
The size of your solar PV system will depend on:
- The physical unshaded area available for the installation of your panels
- How much you are prepared to spend
- What portion of your electrical consumption you wish to generate.To work out what size solar PV system you require, you need to analyse your household’s daily electricity consumption. Your monthly or quarterly electricity bill measures your household’s electricity consumption in kilowatt hours. From this figure, you can calculate your average daily electricity consumption, and the average amount of electricity your solar PV system needs to produce to cover your electricity needs. If you are unsure how to do this we can help you.
This process will also be completed by your accredited designer during the design and specification stage, as part of their load analysis. Off Grid Power System Components usually incorporates a power-generation system as well as an energy storage capability.
A solar array is configured in ‘strings’ to produce a voltage closely matched to the charge controller in use.
The charge controller passes the generated electricity on to the inverter or batteries. The best inverters are multi-function devices that manage the charging of your batteries, and automatically control a backup diesel generator when necessary to keep your batteries in good charge.
Additionally, they will convert your battery d.c.voltage to an 240 V a.c. supply ready to run all your lighting and appliances.
The battery storage system is generally configured to run at 48 volts.
It is contained in a separate room or enclosure, if in the same room as the inverter and other components.
A monitor will allow you to see at a glance what the ‘state of charge’ of the battery system is.
A diesel or petrol backup generator is commonly available to keep the batteries at a good charge level at those times when insufficient sun is available.
A system such as this will generally require no maintenance other than regular monitoring of the battery charge state, leaving more time to enjoy the great outdoors.
Off Grid Installation
The beauty of an stand alone installation is that the up front cost is almost all you pay for your off grid power.
You then have very low running costs for up to 20 to 30 years.
Unlike grid-connect systems, am off grid system may be eligible for STC rebates for a system up to 20kW! That’s a great incentive. Costs vary widely, depending on system configurations and energy needs but a small system may cost approximately $15,000-20,000 (incl. GST); medium system $30,000-$40,000; and large $50,000 upwards.
We are here to help
Wherever you are up to in planning your off-grid renewable energy supply, contact Northern Rivers Renewable Energy to discuss your site, lifestyle or business requirements and the range of options for your secure energy future. If you would like more information or wish to arrange for an obligation free site appraisal please contact us