EnergyAustralia, one of Australia’s leading energy retailers, today announced a AUD$9.3 million partnership with solar inverter system developer Redback Technologies, the first major investment by the company’s NextGen business unit.
The Redback Smart Hybrid Solar Inverter system combines a smart solar inverter, battery enclosure and “intelligent” energy management software into a seamless package.
The technology allows customers to decide how they use, save and even sell energy captured from their roof-top solar panels. And they can do it all from a smartphone.
Andrew Perry, EnergyAustralia Executive – NextGen, said the partnership was a great example of how EnergyAustralia is investing in the development of reliable, affordable and cleaner technology which puts the customer in control of their energy consumption.
“With a Redback system customers can manage their energy consumption so they not only save money, but reduce their carbon emissions,” Andrew said. “We’re proud to be partnering with a company that’s driving Australian innovation in a way that’s good for customers and good for the environment.
“Our investment in Redback is a signal to the market, too: If you’re running a company with great ideas for new energy-efficient technology then get in touch with EnergyAustralia’s NextGen team.”
Andrew said EnergyAustralia had not set a limit on the funds it was willing to invest in the right business or technology.
The Redback system will help customers make the most of the energy captured by their solar systems, making households less reliant on the grid and more independent.
For example, the technology will allow a customer to schedule major appliances including electric hot-water systems, air-conditioners or even pool pumps to run when there is excess solar power available. It means households don’t have to draw more expensive energy from the grid during peak times.
The technology uses machine learning to gather intelligence over time based on user preferences and even external factors like the weather.
Redback Technologies Founder and Managing Director, Philip Livingston, said he was excited by the partnership as it will assist Redback to continue to develop technologies which put customers in the driver’s seat.
“It’s great to have the backing of a company like EnergyAustralia that’s committed to leading change in the energy sector,” Philip said.
“Our partnership with EnergyAustralia significantly accelerates Redback’s technology roadmap and strategic plan for leading the disruptive change required for the mass adoption of renewables,” he said. “Today marks a new day for the clean energy sector in Australia, and we at Redback could not be happier.”
Redback’s Smart Hybrid Solar Inverter system will be available to order from EnergyAustralia early next year with battery storage capacity ranging from around 3-12kWh. Because the system allows customers to use more of the solar energy they capture, smaller batteries can be used to keep costs down.