- Published: October 18, 2013
- Written by Amanda H. Miller
The newest HDPV Alliance member, ecoSolargy, will announce at the Solar Power International Conference (SPI) this weekend that the company has developed a complete solar energy kit that provides the highest-quality components and greatest system efficiency at the most affordable price point possible.
The HDPV Alliance, founded a year ago by a collection of solar industry companies making panels, inverters, cables and other components, envisions its set of industry standards and logo for member products to indicate the same seal of approval and level of quality that consumers associate with Energy Star appliances.
Founding members of the Alliance include Ampt, KACO New Energy, LTi REEnergy, and REFUsol amongst many others.
“Going back a year and even before that, a group of us got together and determined there was a great opportunity to get all the types of companies together so we could realize the benefits of a distributed generation conversion infrastructure,” stated Mark Kanjorski, Marketing Director for Ampt and Chair of the HDPV Alliance.
From the beginning, the goal was to develop a set of comprehensive standards for each piece of the solar installation puzzle.
“When we break down the value chain of a solar system, you have racking, the PV modules, converters, switches, cabling, labor and the doohickies that connect it all,” said David Devir with KACO New Energy and another Chair of the HDPV Alliance. "The lack of cohesion between the elements contributes to the inherent cost of a solar installation."
Focus is shifting from the expense of solar panels to the so-called soft costs, such as permitting, streamlining the installation cost becomes key in bringing down the cost of solar. That’s something that starts with the creation of industry standards.
“We’re a bunch of competitors – the highest-performing component manufacturers – coming together and developing best practices to overcome some of these obstacles,” Devir added.
While the HDPV Alliance isn’t building kits or selling anything and is instead just developing industry standards and issuing a seal of approval, some members are taking the extra step toward creating an integrated solution.
That’s what ecoSolargy has done with its kit.
“Originally we started out only selling our solar panels. But our goal is to bring down the cost of solar, to reach grid parity,” stated ecoSolargy CEO Allan Lee. "Most of our customers buying panels are installers. They’re very good at it, but they’re not always good at negotiating supply contracts and putting together deals for all the components.”
Once ecoSolargy joined the Alliance, the company gained access to all its members, which represent some of the best manufacturers in every realm of solar power conversion.
“We’ve never had our hands on a good group of companies like this all working on the same side together,” Lee said. “We designed an end-to-end solar solution based on input from all the members.”
Because ecoSolargy was able to work directly with each of the component manufacturers, the company can now offer a cost-competitive, high-performing complete solar kit to its installer customers.
It's projected that alliance members will continue to work together to develop integrated systems like the one ecoSolargy will soon begin marketing.