Thursday, November 18, 2004

Solar Story

Part of the plan for the house is a small solar array (1500 W). You might think, as I did, that with the solar industry over 25 years old, that getting the exact product one wants would be easy. It is not. There are few vendors of small systems (sub 2500W) that will sell power back to the utility (grid-tie) and at the same time offer battery backup. I had placed an order for such a product from Xantrex (yet another Canadian company). The grid-tie part was to ship in August, but August brought only an announcement that they had decided not to make the product after all.

This left Outback Power Systems of Washington with the right products. They are a private and relatively new company. There website is horribly out of date, and they seem like the kind of garage company that could fold any minute.

I held off waiting to see if any new products or mergers would be announced. So yesterday I placed the order for an Outback system. I only need the inverter and some mounting equipment. I have had the solar panels for nearly two years now.

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