In addition to the solar panels and batteries, the network also consists of a hub that communicates with a smart meter to manage the flow of electricity. The hub predicts how much energy the low-power DC devices will need in the near future, how much electricity is available as stored energy from the solar panels and battery, and whether it is currently a peak or off-peak period. It can even use the weather forecast to predict how much solar power will be generated the following day, and use the information to decide how much electricity from the grid to store in the battery.
To use the electricity, devices such as computers, printers, and phone chargers can be connected directly to the hub. To power ceiling lights, Smart DC light switch sockets can be installed in place of existing light switches. The Smart DC sockets can also be configured to act as DC inlets to plug in the window- and wall-based solar panels.
The Smart DC network is intended to power only low-power DC devices, not high-power appliances such as washing machines, dishwashers, and stoves. These appliances are best powered directly by the grid, and the best way to cut their operating costs is by choosing energy-efficient models, according to Moixa. The company estimates that about 40% of a home’s electricity goes toward powering low-power DC devices, which could result in significant savings.
Source: physorg.comAdded: 14 October 2011