The solar industry is in a boom phase at the moment. Wherever you look, people are talking about being self-sustaining, eco-friendly and independent. Installing a solar inverter checks all of these boxes. It generates power with minimal human interference, is reliable and is great for the environment. So, solar usage is probably going to continue to grow. Let’s take a look at some of the other trends that will affect this industry in 2021.
The appeal will broaden
Solar power systems have always been assumed to be an expensive affair given the relatively high initial costs. Thus, till now, usage has been limited mostly to high rise apartment developers, commercial complexes and bungalows of the rich and famous. However, the appeal will broaden and solar power will be democratized. A balance of government incentives and subsidies, lower prices and easier availability will drive this. Further, if the COVID pandemic has taught us anything, it is the important of being self reliant. This too will encourage people to install solar power systems for electricity on their rooftops.
Traditional energy companies will diversify their interests
As the appeal for solar power increases, more companies and utility providers will find it lucrative to enter this sector. Expect traditional power generating companies to diversify their offerings and enter the renewable energy market. The same may be seen for inverter and battery manufacturers. Many battery manufacturers will redesign their products so as to comply with the needs of solar panels thus making it more easily available.
Local is better
The pandemic has suddenly made everyone realize that though the world is growing smaller, covering distances can still be a challenge. The weaknesses of long supply chains have probably never been as apparent and everyone from big industry players to end consumers is looking for a way to shorten the supply chain. No one wants to be stuck waiting for a replacement part to be shipped from across the country or worse from abroad. Expect more small brands to emerge that cater to local needs and fewer companies to rely on imported components. Larger brands may move their factories closer to the biggest markets.
Robotisation may reduce costs
Shortening of supply chains may or may not result in lower price points. But, the entry of robotics into the solar industry most definitely will. Local production becomes more competitive and hence companies have to find a way to lower price points. This is where digitization and robotics will play a large role. The result, a solar inverter may become more affordable for many more.
The system must look good
The last year has seen people spend a lot more time at home. As a result, we’re less likely to ignore visual sore points. Solar panels take up considerable space and hence must look good. Instead of the old-school framed solar panels, photovoltaic cells will be integrated and built in to other building components. Think glass with inbuilt photovoltaic cells. These can be understood as intelligent building materials. As solar power moves from being an emerging technology to a ‘must have’, aesthetics becomes a lot more important. Even when they aren’t disguised as something else, the panels will be designed to be aesthetically pleasing to the eye.
Customer service and warranties will become key selection criteria
With more companies entering the sector and the broadening appeal of solar energy, companies will have to find new ways to set themselves apart. This is where warranties and customer service steps in. Given the cost of purchasing a new solar power system, companies will need to offer extensive warranties. They will also need to work on their customer service to make the installation and maintenance process less labor intensive for the end user. Customers will no longer make their choice based only on inverter and battery capacity but also on the type of service offered.
EV chargers will become more common in solar batteries
Given the rising petrol and diesel costs, electric vehicles will also see an increase in demand. It’s another way people have learned that they can reduce their carbon footprint. Thus, there will be a greater need for chargers in the garage. Since houses are likely to be powered by solar, the batteries will need to be fitted with EV chargers instead of waiting for the end user to make modifications on their own. The same 40-amp backfeed circuit breaker can be used to power this. The new inverter designs will have dedicated connections for these chargers and thus significantly reduce costs. This could further help increase the market for electric vehicles.
Solar use will see tremendous growth in the residential, hospitality and commercial sector. More and more people will install solar panels on their rooftops as well as other places like the covering for parked vehicles. A solar inverter may soon be as integral to developers as conventional electricity connections.