FOSTER CITY Calif., September 20, 2010—SolarCity®, a national leader in solar financing, design, installation, monitoring and related services, today announced it will receive $800,000 as part of a grant in the second round of funding by from the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) for the California Solar Initiative (CSI) Research Development, Deployment and Demonstration (CSI RD&D) Program. SolarCity is teaming with Tesla Motors and the University of California, Berkeley, which will receive an additional $900,000, to research advanced grid-interactive distributed photovoltaic (PV) and storage.
Investment in this project will help advance battery storage technology for the PV market. PV storage can manage the flow of solar electricity for use by a home or business, and extend production into the evening, even after the sun goes down. SolarCity is developing a system that will combine Tesla Motors’ vehicle battery system with SolarCity’s SolarGuard dispatch and monitoring platform, to create a combined photovoltaic (PV) and stationary storage product which can be installed in homes and businesses. The battery storage will collect excess PV power production so that during peak periods, the utility can pull from battery storage rather than power plants which have greater emissions.
“Battery storage will be an important component in the mass adoption of PV, it will make solar electricity a more predictable energy source,” said SolarCity COO Peter Rive.
The goal of the CSI RD&D program is to fund research, development, demonstration, and deployment of solar technologies that will measurably reduce the cost and accelerate the installation of technologies that employ solar energy to generate or store of electricity or to reduce the use of natural gas.
SolarCity®—a national leader in solar power system design, financing, installation, monitoring and related services—was founded with the mission to help millions of homeowners and businesses adopt solar power, protect themselves from rising electricity costs and protect their environment from polluting power sources. The company’s SolarLease®, PurePower™ and Commercial Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) options can make it possible for homeowners and businesses to switch to clean, solar power for less money than they currently pay for electricity. SolarCity currently serves more than 1,000 communities in Arizona, California, Colorado, Oregon and Texas. Additional information about the company is available on the Web at www.solarcity.com.