Wind versus traditional grid supply
Switching to renewable energy systems that provide energy security and a future-proofed fixed cost makes sense.
Remote, Off-grid & Backup power market:
In remote areas, grid supply is either intermittent, unpractical or prohibitively expensive due to the need to build, maintain and connect extra transmission and distribution lines to the usage points.
Individuals and businesses operating in such areas have traditionally relied on diesel fuel generators which are expensive to run due to high operation and maintenance costs, volatile commodity prices and complex transport and delivery logistics. This type of generator also produces large amounts of greenhouse gases and poses a health and safety risk to the locals and the environment. Spills frequently occur, even in the most technologically advanced regions of the world.
Renewable energy systems are the safest and most cost-effective solution. Axis Energy offers stand-alone wind or hybrid (wind/solar/energy storage) installations that provide a compelling economic case for implementation.
Most households and businesses located in urban areas are connected to the national electricity grids. While reducing one's carbon footprint can be an overarching reason itself, there is further justification to switch to renewable energy.
Electricity prices are soaring across the globe. Consumers have to pay a retail charge regardless of their actual electricity consumption. This charge can be as high as a third of the electricity bills, and could be avoided altogether if consumers produced their own electricity.
Further to that, the cost of electricity is not just volatile, but also upward trending. In Australia, the Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show a 20% increase in electricity price between 2012 and 2016. A study from the Australian National University demonstrated that electricity prices rise more in states highly reliant on fossil fuel such as coal for power generation. Queensland's electricity prices have increased 136% between 2006 and 2016 while those of South Australia only increased by 87%. Queensland's share of renewable energy mix only increased 3% as opposed to South Australia's 48% over the same period of time.
Renewable energy systems have a fixed capital cost and small O&M costs over their lifespan. Axis Energy provides solutions that have minimal O&M costs meaning the capital costs are recovered faster through savings on energy bills. Customers know what their electricity will cost years ahead.
Wind versus solar
Solar energy stand-alone systems are a mature solution for those located in sunny areas.
There are, however, inherent limitations with such systems, for instance:
they only produce power during sunshine hours;
they require a large footprint to generate meaningful volumes of power; and
large capacity batteries must be installed in order to minimise reliance on grid supply of electricity and be able to use solar power at night time when the demand is the highest (this drastically increases upfront capital costs).
Where the local resource is adequate, installing a small wind turbine instead of solar energy systems - or installing a hybrid system comprising of wind and solar energy converters - often offers better economics than a stand-alone solar energy system.
Axis Energy's stand-alone wind energy system is more cost-effective and a better alternative to solar energy systems in windy locations, areas with seasonal or low solar irradiation exposure and when the space available for installation is limited.
Unlike solar, our solutions are not limited to produce energy during daylight hours only. It has the major advantage of being able to produce energy day and night, as long as the wind blows. Windy nights are more common during Autumn and Winter, when solar radiation is already lower, providing a much more holistic solution than stand-alone solar energy systems.
In the residential sector, night time is precisely when most people are at home, often back from work, university or school, and have numerous appliances and lighting going which therefore require the largest amount of energy. Likewise, the commercial and industrial sectors can use night time wind energy for the overnight operation of the equipment such as HVAC, fridges/freezers, and other machinery that operates continuously.
In additional to that, Axis Energy's technology is able to produce much larger amounts of energy than solar energy systems for a given footprint. Two masts consisting of three modules each can produce up to 15 kW, and take only about 10 m2 of space. Efficient solar panels produce about 170 W per square metre, meaning a 85 m2 roof space is required for a 15 kW capacity system. This allows better use of the available space on rooftops and enables commercial volume power production within the ‘built environment’.
Micro-grids - wind, solar and energy storage
In locations where both the solar and wind resources are good, a hybrid system has an additional benefit of reducing the capacity of battery storage required to prevent energy supply shortage as the only time the stored energy is required is when the wind and sun resources are simultaneously low.
The ability to rely on the wind system to provide energy increases the amount of power available at all time when compared to a solar energy system alone. This further reduces the need for battery storage.