A combination of the home automation specialists ZigBee and the largest form of alternative energy seems simple, yet it is not something that has really taken off yet.
If you know the home automation market, you will know the name ZigBee. ZigBee offers the latest, advanced wireless technology, which is currently used in millions of products worldwide.
Solar energy is a market that has been around for a while, but it is gaining popularity as electricity prices rise. Furthermore, people are making a conscious effort to become greener, and this alternative energy form ticks all the boxes. Solar energy is also getting much more effective, which means that it is less expensive.
When installed, this technology feeds back to a central unit that is controlled by the user. This unit then tells you when maintenance is required or when the panels need cleaning. One of the biggest issues with solar panels is because they are installed on roofs they are hard to get to regularly. This is an issue because they do need cleaning quite a lot to receive the best output. However, it is not viable to clean them all the time so having the information come through to the central unit tells you when it is a good time to go up there and clean.
The energy that comes from a series of panels tends to be limited to the output of the panel performing the worst. This means if you have one panel that is covered in dust, then your group will not be performing as well as it can.
Monitoring these panels using ZigBee technology offers different benefits. When the right solution is installed, the user is offered the chance to turn on/off individual panels or substrings through their phone or PC or controller.
Legally, all solar panel systems that have been installed on business premises are required to have a manual shut down feature so that they remain safe in the event of a fire. If you have ZigBee technology installed this would give the person with remote access the chance to turn off the system from wherever they are in the world. This means a trigger or switch does not need to be used every time, which is an issue because the trigger or switch would have to be close to the panels, which means they may not be able to be obtained during a fire.
As you can see from the above, clearly the combination of solar panels and ZigBee is a winning solution and one that will continue to grow.