Will IoT Play a Big Role in Solar? You Bet!

August 31, 2017 Eric

The solar industry is changing almost as fast as it’s growing. You can see a lot of this growth in the state of Virginia — as massive retailer Amazon moves in to harness enormous amounts of sun power in multiple Virginia counties, big local utilities are also accommodating solar power, although they might be a little reluctant about it.

 

The bottom line is that the use of solar energy is expanding rapidly, not just on gigantic solar farms that power big commercial efforts, but also in small business administration, and in individual households where consumers like to get their energy from a more sustainable source.

 

That leads us to another big trend is also growing quickly — the Internet of Things is one of the most interesting new technological developments in our digital age. Experts predict some 50 billion devices coming online within the next few decades to form complex and sophisticated connected networks.

 

Experts are already looking at how IoT will play a critical role in the solar industry. For example, there is the idea of scalability.

 

Solar is an energy source that is dynamic, not static. In the past, that has worked against some solar adoption models. However, the Internet of Things has a lot of potential to improve how that dynamic energy is used, and to make large-scale deployment a lot smoother.

By hooking up connected sensors to solar panels or windmills, analysts can do more to examine what’s going on over a connected grid. They can start automate a lot of the give-and-take processes that will make supply meet demand — so that they get over a lot of the hurdles of using solar in a versatile way. A report from Renewable Energy World goes over some of this “horizontal” scaling benefit, as well as the idea of decentralization in solar networks.

 

For more, check out this interview with AT&T General Manager Mike Zeto. Zeto talks about a connected world, and points out how the company is interested in leveraging the Internet of Things in energy markets.

 

It’s an exciting time for the solar industry. If you want to know more about setting up solar projects in Charlottesville, VA or surrounding areas, Sun Day Solar can help. We have a lot of experience helping to connect our customers to systems that practically utilize the sun’s power for residential or small business applications. We can now consult on available grants and incentives, and help to figure out what’s makes sense for a given property. Talk to Sun Day Solar about your plan to switch from traditional energy sources to the green power of the sun.