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Prosumers Drive Increasing Demand For Smarter Solar Building Solutions

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As concerns
about increasing home energy costs continue, ABB expects to see stronger demand
from ‘Prosumers’ in 2018 for smarter solutions to manage energy usage.


With 80 percent of consumers now owning at
least one smart home device and over a third (36 percent) investing in energy
management technology to provide greater control of their energy usage*
, the rise of the prosumer highlights one of the most
exciting trends in renewable energy, with ABB predicting even
greater competition and innovation in the energy sector for 2018.



ABB believes
that it is this desire to harness energy and use it only when required that will
lead to increasing demand in 2018 for solar inverters with integrated energy
storage, control and smart features, like its UNO-DM-PLUS inverter and REACT,
that enables consumers to store excess energy for use it when it is most
needed.


These 'prosumers’,
who install solar photovoltaic (PV) and energy storage solutions, will look to
maximize self-consumption. Research by IHS Markit **predicts that the rate of
self-consumed power will increase to more than 2.5 percent of total final
electricity consumption in Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom by 2020, with
more than 25 TWh of electricity being generated and self-consumed on site.


As Massimo
Migliorini, Global Business Development manager for ABB Electrification
Products division said: “These active energy users, who both consume and
produce electricity, are having a dramatic impact on the electricity system. In
effect, householders have now become the owners of the energy harnessed by
their photovoltaic (PV) system and are deciding when to use it without wasting
a Watt."


In
response, ABB offers a broad range of inverters to meet the needs of modern
homes. For example, its UNO-DM-PLUS single-phase inverter family is easy to
install and fast to commission. The addition of Plug and Play connectors, both
on the DC and AC side, together with wireless communication, enable a simple,
fast and safe installation without the need of opening the front cover of the
inverter, resulting in shorter installation time and lower costs.


UNO-DM-PLUS
responds to the increasing demand for the smart capabilities prosumers are
looking for. It allows customers to enjoy a remote monitoring experience,
thanks to the embedded logging capabilities and the ability to directly
transfer the data to the intranet (via Ethernet or WLAN). A comprehensive set
of control functions with an embedded efficient algorithm, enabling dynamic
feed-in control of the energy, make the inverter suitable for worldwide
applications.


Innovations
include the ability to collect and store PV energy, making it available when
it’s needed, after sunset, during the evening and first thing in the
morning. ABB offers a range of advanced
solutions for collecting and storing PV energy, including REACT, which manages
the energy that the photovoltaic system produces, by storing it inside a
high-performance battery. Thanks to its integrated load manager, it optimizes
energy storage by aligning energy production with the levels of consumption.


When
combined, the storage and load management elements make the best use of the
energy harnessed within the PV system. This avoids consumption peaks, by
spreading the electricity load to keep usage within the capacity of the energy
produced.


In line
with the demand for greater connectivity, REACT has a dedicated app for
smartphones or tablets, allowing the user to monitor how much renewable energy
is being produced and managed, while at home or away remotely.


“It’s this
appetite for greater connectivity and smarter solutions that will drive the
future of the residential solar market. Installers need to be able to link to
this growing digitalization and capitalize on the solutions that put control
for energy usage and storage back in to the hands of the homeowner", concluded Massimo.


* www.techuk.org/downloads/Theconnectedhome 2017

** IHS
Markit™ Grid Defection Report June 2017



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