Solar Power International 2015 Pre-Event Showcase - Page 14


The picturesque town of Haliburton in Central Ontario is home to just 6500 year-round residents, but with electricity costs in Ontario reaching as much as $8000 per year, renewable energy is becoming very popular to keep utility costs down; particularly for those who can take advantage of net metering.

With its old grid infrastructure, Ontario’s regulatory agencies control feed-in tariffs closely, often denying applications for micro-generator accounts citing concerns about oversaturation of solar generation on their circuit. George and Elaine Schmid operate their business, the Haliburton Soap Factory, out of their home; they contacted Brian Nash of Haliburton Solar and Wind to discuss their options to decrease their overall electricity use and high utility costs. Brian designed a 10kW PV system around OutBack’s Radian inverter/charger with GridZero technology.

GridZero allows a home or business to use generated renewable energy for self-consumption and draw on the grid only when needed, such as demand spikes or when there is insufficient solar radiation, effectively “zeroing-out the grid.” With this technology, the Schmid’s reduced their utility costs by nearly 50 percent.

Gietzen Electric, located in Buhl, Idaho, is a full-service electricity installer and repairer with more than 40 years of demonstrated high-quality service. After a service interruption from the grid, a local resident approached Gietzen Electric about installing an alternative power source that would ensure electricity access during outages and reduce his overall spending on power during peak demand times.

In order to design a high-quality PV/solar system with seamless operation, Gietzen chose a complete OutBack Power system for the 12kw solar project, including dual Radian inverter/chargers FLEXmax charge controllers, IBR-3 with EnergyCell GH Batteries and OPTICS RE remote control and monitoring. The finished system requires little maintenance and both the installer and homeowner can check on the system any time from their phone, laptop or other internet-enabled devices. The customer’s home utility bills have diminished entirely, only paying a monthly fee for the meter.

CASE STUDY #2: GridZero Business - Haliburton Soap Factory


Net-Zero Home in Idaho