Services: Renewable Energy

Renewable energy is becoming increasingly accessible to home owners and businesses around New Zealand. From solar installations and wind turbines to micro hydro systems, there is a variety of options to investigate when looking into sustainable energy systems to suit your home. With experience across the board in systems for domestic, commercial and industrial properties, Hoskins Energy Systems can provide the depth of knowledge to match a system to your needs. Practicality, price and design will all be factored into our recommendation and we will ensure that you understand the capability of your system of choice.

A bit about renewable energy

Solar PV (photovoltaic) systems convert solar energy to electricity. Arrays of solar PV panels can be sized and arranged to fit the space available. Domestic PV systems tend to be from 3 to 5 kW, with each kW covering an area of roughly eight square metres.

Micro-hydro systems are best suited to rural areas on waterways that flow all year round. The more vertical distance you have between the point where you take the water and where the turbine is located the more electricity you can generate. Generally, micro-hydro systems for houses and buildings are less than 5kW, and in many cases less than 1kW.

Small wind turbines are a possibility if you are in a location with consistent, strong wind. New Zealand has one of the best wind resources in the world giving us the opportunity to generate renewable electricity with no ongoing greenhouse gas emissions. However, there are maintenance requirements to factor in when opting for wind turbines, lots of moving parts need more attention than static systems.

Grid connected system
You have the option of choosing a grid connected system. This allows you to generate your own electricity without needing a battery bank. When your system is generating power, it will supply any loads in your home, with excess power being exported back to the grid, for a credit on your power bill. At times when your system doesn’t generate the amount of electricity you need, the national grid provides a back-up to your system. These systems are also called grid-tied, or grid-interactive, and you can use one form of renewable system or a combination of different systems.
If you do use power from the grid, you’ll still pay for it at retail prices, and if you sell excess back into the grid you'll get less than retail. That amount, the "buy back" price, is set by your electricity retailer. In the event of a grid outage, your system will shut down as a safety precaution. There is an option to add batteries so your system acts as a back up power system for grid outages.

Stand-alone power systems
In some situations connecting to the grid can be very expensive, it can cost as much $25,000 per kilometre. A stand-alone power system can be an attractive economic alternative. Stand-alone power systems generally use a combination of renewable generation sources, a battery bank, smart controller/inverter and often some kind of back-up like a diesel generator.

 

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