Off-Grid and Grid Independent
The term “Off Grid” is often used, but with differing interpretations. We understand “Off-Grid” to mean a facility with no connection to a utility power supply – the facility is dependent on the solar solution as the only source of energy and electrical power. The solution compensates for cloudy days, extended overcast periods or increased consumption (visitors etc) with extra solar panels and a larger battery than will usually be required.
We introduced the term “Grid independent”, which means a solution that can provide power and energy to the facility on an average sunny day, indefinitely. It does not compensate for cloudy days, extended overcast periods or increased consumption (visitors etc) with extra solar panel or over-size battery, bat a connection to the utility power supply (or generator) is retained to fill in shortfalls on “not-average” days.
Off-Grid solutions need to be significantly larger than Grid Independent solutions for the same implementation, as off-grid must cater for worst case days, i.e. short winter days or overcast summer days.