Planet Ark Power > Energy Solutions > C&I Rooftop Solar

Commercial Rooftop Solar

Cash flow positive from day one

Energy costs have jumped more than 70 percent over the past year in many Australian industries, and there’s no end to their growth in site.

Unless you consider solar power.

There’s never been a better time to install solar, and the per-kilowatt hour cost is the most affordable it’s ever been. In fact, we estimate that by investing in solar now, companies can slash their energy cost by as much as 4x over the next 25 years. That can represent internal rate of return of 15%, 25% or even nearly 40%.

The two types of rooftop solar

Many people don’t realize this, but there are actually two different types of rooftop solar systems. Which you chose for your business will depend on whether it’s more economical to simply offset peak energy costs or to export energy back to the grid.

Also known as an urban solar farm, solar rooftops that can export energy back to the grid are called a Distributed Energy Resource. That means that the components that generate energy are part of a larger network of energy generators that are distributed around a location, a city, or an area. These systems contribute to cutting energy costs in two main ways:

  • By exporting excess energy back to the grid;
  • By reducing the need for delivery costs associated with infrastructure fees from the utility.

A traditional solar rooftop supplies its building with the power it needs for operations. Any excess power the system generates may be stored in a battery storage system, or it may just be lost.

Excess energy in a traditional system may not be sold back to the grid. What’s more, if the building is located anywhere except in an urban setting, the building will still pay the utility for gird infrastructure development and maintenance.

Why don’t all solar rooftop systems export energy back to the grid?

That’s a great question. This is highly regulated in Australia. By law, power suppliers need to keep voltage at a certain level. If levels are too high, they run the risk of causing electrical shorts, which can damage equipment, or cause fires or other damage. If an energy supplier delivers power at higher voltages, even accidentally, they can be fined by regulators. As you might imagine, utilities don’t want to pay these fines. As such, they often don’t allow solar rooftops to export their excess energy back to the grid, which can cause voltage spikes.

That’s where our technology comes in. With our smart battery storage systems, we’re able to regulate the voltage, making excess energy safe for export. That’s just one way we work to save our clients money.