Great Advances in Solar

I've written about my opinion on solar energy in the past but I honestly believe that 2017 will be the year that this industry gives us more advances to the technology. You may not be aware but there were vast improvements in 2016 and I know this only because my family has recently looked into installing solar panels to save a buck where we can.

First and foremost one huge change that took place in 2016 in the solar market was the acquisition of Solar City by Tesla. Tesla has positioned themselves as the premium standard when it comes to electric vehicles and it seems only natural that they would acquire a company that has continually out performed other solar provider.

In my little quest to find the latest and greatest I stumbled upon the Aspen Battery which is a battery designed to efficiently provide battery capability in addition to your solar panels to be less reliant on your energy provider. By now you may be wondering why you need a battery when you have solar? Think of it like a hybrid car. You use the battery when you can but for the most part you're still dependent on fossil fuel. Same thing goes for the solar industry. However the Aspen battery contains no heavy metals or toxic chemicals and the best feature by far is that it's non-combustible because it uses saltwater which basically means that it won't explode on you and burn down your house while trying to save a few dollars. There are actually a few companies, Tesla being one of them with their Powerwall 2 that has been recently redesigned 2016 but Tesla isn't great on their technological advances when it comes to batteries as they have a history of over-heating. Regardless of that, it hasn't stopped the company from constantly trying to beat the market. Tesla has released new solar panel which they've designed to look like traditional shingles. I'm not sure of the pricing on these yet but we all know the routine. When it's new to the market, the prices are through the roof (pun intended)! I just like that it looks like a traditional roof versus those big bulky panels. From what I've read the textured and smooth glass tiles are the cheapest versions of the new system.

Now for the important stuff that really impacts our bottom line. When you get a solar unit installed on your roof, it's just the 1st phase in becoming less reliant on your electricity provider and the end goal is to be completely off the grid. The only problem is that the solar panels we use today doesn't provide all of your electricity and you actually still have an electric bill that comes every month. No one actually tells you that in the brochure when you're weighing your options to go solar. After installation of the solar panels, the energy you consume is converted from DC to AC for your use but it's also connected to the electricity grids which is another name for your electric company. What you don't use is actually fed back into that grid (owned by your energy provider) and in turn they distribute it back out as a profit. What the battery does is take the energy that you produce and stores it in it's inverted state so that you can use it later. The battery only sends the energy back to the grid when it has no more storage capability (basically means that it's fully charged) and you'll only use energy from the grid when your battery is fully depleted. The only problem I see with this outside of the fact that the technology is still in it's infancy is that you want to install the safest more cost efficient battery after having the solar panels installed.

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