THUNDER BAY – Thunder Bay Hydro is taking on the future of electricity distribution, working with a local homeowner to generate their own clean energy and serve as a power source to support the electricity grid.
Today, a few months after announcing its partnership with Powerstream Inc., Thunder Bay Hydro unveiled the first installation of a Power.House® system in the city; a solar power generator which is controlled using a software management system.
The installation was commissioned on January 12, 2017 by local contractors, and consists of rooftop solar panels, a bank of high-capacity, utility-grade batteries to store the power and a master control unit that work together to collect solar energy during the day and convert it into electricity. On sunny days, electricity is sent to the battery backup, used in the home or forwarded to the electricity grid for credit. The software management system determines the routing depending on what is best for the homeowner at that time.
“It’s an exciting day for our company”, says Robert Mace, President of Thunder Bay Hydro. “Thunder Bay Hydro is tasked to provide local customers with access to electricity. In the future, there will be alternatives to getting that electricity from the grid. We are pleased to be able to be on the path to implement technologies that will benefit our customers.”
The first home to take part in the program was selected based on grid location, roof orientation and size, willingness of participants, and satisfaction of home assessment criteria.
“I am interested to see how much power can be generated from my own home”, says Kristine Thompson, homeowner of the first Power.House® system in Thunder Bay. “I have never been interested in my home’s energy consumption before, and look forward to saving energy and giving back to our city’s electricity supply”.
The system is expected to generate approximately 6000 kilowatt-hours of electricity per year, resulting in a significant reduction of electricity required from the grid.
Based on previous installations at our partner utility, a higher level of knowledge regarding energy usage, positive bill impact and effective power outage protection for the project homeowner are anticipated. Thunder Bay Hydro will determine how it will move forward with the technology once the system has been observed over a measurable period of time.