Hybrid Household Energy Storage System Optimized for Energy Self-Sufficiency

February 05, 2020 by Paul Shepard

Nichicon Corporation has introduced a new hybrid energy storage system for home solar power consumption. Nichicon will exhibit the system at the 10th International Smart Grid Expo at Tokyo Big Sight from February 26–28, 2020.

According to Nichicon, the new hybrid energy storage system is designed to “Back up the entire house with solar-generated power to guarantee your family stability in the event of disaster.” It is a large-capacity (12kWh) and high-output (5.9kW) hybrid energy storage system optimized for energy self-sufficiency

The ESS-H2L1 system leverages large capacity and high output to supply the entire home with power. When a power outage occurs, the energy storage system will automatically supply the home with power. The system can even supply air conditioning units and electric stovetops rated to 200V. Even if an outage lasts several days, the battery will automatically recharge if connected to a solar power system.

(click on image to enlarge)

  1. High capacity: 12kWh supports the use standard home appliances for up to 23 hours.
  2. Rated output: 5.9kW, charges/discharges (solar): 5.9kW, independent output: 5.9kW
  3. Supplies power to a home’s electrical panel during outages; able to provide 200V output enable the use of air conditioner units and electric hot plates. Full load distributor panel provided as an option.
  4. Guaranteed compatibility with solar panels of any manufacturer, along with ENE-FARM, and EcoCute products.
  5. Outdoor installation guaranteed for 15 years; providing protection against natural disasters for 10 years; installation possible in areas of extreme cold. Indoor use guaranteed for five years. Main electrical panel guaranteed for one year. Can be installed in areas with temperatures ranging from -30°C to 40°C and can operate in temperatures from -20°C to 40°C.
  6. Indoor remote-control touch panel and network control Free network monitoring service (error notification, product lifespan confirmation). Able to connect to the internet without a home energy management system (HEMS). Long-distance control, etc.
  7. Able to receive warnings from the Japan Meteorological Agency (from March 2020) Automatically charges the energy storage system to full when the Japan Meteorological Agency issues a warning to the owner’s area of residence.

This new large-capacity, high-output hybrid energy storage system, positioned as the industry’s flagship model, inherits the functionality of the highly appraised ESS-H1L1 (previous model). Metrics such as solar power generation and the battery’s charge can be monitored and controlled from an indoor remote controller, making it easy to use. The system’s features enable it to easily accommodate new services expected to make an appearance in the future, such as demand response and virtual power plant technology.

Target Customers

  • New construction homes installed with solar power and household energy storage systems as a set
  • Households with solar power systems installed whose feed-in tariff (FIT) period is set to end after November 2019
  • Households that have recently installed solar power systems who want to add an energy storage system (for energy savings and as an emergency countermeasure)
  • The low-priced model is optimized for use in power purchase agreements (PPAs) and third-party ownership (TPO). TPO is a model whereby a third party owns a solar power system on a homeowner’s property. Also called “roof lending.”

Overview and Development Background

According to the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy, the feed-in tariff (FIT) period for solar power systems installed in 560,000 homes will expire in fiscal 2019. The FIT period will expire for approximately 200,000 homes per year. This will a cause a shift in where power from household solar systems is directed. Shifting it from selling it to utilities to using it to power the home.

There is also demand for such systems from homeowners who seek protection against power outages that may occur during natural disasters (typhoons, heavy rainfall, and earthquakes). These consumers want to keep the lights on, the refrigerator running, and power TVs, cell phones, air conditioning units, and electric stovetops in case of emergency.

The market for household energy storage systems is growing rapidly against this backdrop.