Background

Almost all existing Battery Energy Storage Systems are far more utilitarian than they are user-friendly. It seems to us that these haven’t been looked at as a consumer product, but rather a piece of industrial infrastructure adapted for domestic use.

Our team not only understands the behaviour of homeowners with rooftop solar arrays but also the issues faced by installers, and it was clear that there were many aspects of household (and smaller commercial) battery storage systems that could be improved.

Aim

Drawing on our core of industry knowledge, we envisaged an energy storage solution consciously conceived and designed to meet the needs of solar homeowners.

Our goal was to create a system that was easy to use and that redefined the product category as a genuine consumer appliance.

We were very clear that our product needed to be more intuitive and user friendly, as well as more visually appealing, allowing it to be installed anywhere in the home without looking out of place.

Approach

Even though our team already had an intimate understanding of what consumers and installers wanted from a BESS, we carried out extensive field research and conducted one-on-one interviews with business owners, installers, and end users.

In addition, a number of in-depth case studies on existing BESS owners helped us better understand real-world energy use patterns. Along the way, we uncovered the shortcomings of existing products and some obvious areas for improvement.

This detailed research informed our product specifications:

  • AC coupling
  • 3-4kW charge / discharge power
  • 6kWh base capacity (with the option to add additional 6kWh modules)
  • Options for communication (cellular / Wi-Fi / Ethernet)

With our understanding that installation can account for a large proportion of the total cost of these types of products, we set out to discover how this could be reduced.

Methodology

Here is the breakdown of our roadmap from concept to product:

  • Conduct case studies on existing systems
  • Identify key issues with installation
  • Understand the regulations and certification
  • Determine key factors for each of the major components (inverter, battery cells, BMS, communications module)
  • Develop a blueprint of software and firmware
  • Conduct a feasibility study
  • Evaluate system configurations
  • Spec components
  • Source manufacturers
  • Create a prototype with real components
  • Finalise structural design and component layout
  • Open tooling
  • Finalise firmware
  • Thorough testing and debugging
  • Devise the software user interface
  • Finalise software design
  • Certification
  • Patent
  • Mass production

Solution

The Energizer Homepower represents the intelligent evolution of domestic solar energy storage solutions. We have created a genu­inely user-facing consumer product, rather than a piece of semi-in­dustrial infrastructure to be hidden away in a garage or basement.

As intended, our BESS is easier to install than most previous models on the market, is far more visually appealing, and more intuitive to empower users to make the most of their energy.