Photovoltaic technologies have distinguished themselves as the preeminent solution to the World’s increasing energy demands. PhotonWorks Engineering has over 14 years of experience working with solar photovoltaic systems. We are honored to pass that experience onto our community.
The work begins with an analysis of your home or business. We have developed sophisticated methods for determining the potential of your site. By analyzing sun readings, shading analysis, air quality, and local site conditions our technicians are able to accurately predict the level of solar penetration available to you.
Once we have analyzed your site our engineers begin to design your system. Our mission in design is to reduce your bill to zero. The systems we design are carefully calibrated to produce as much energy as you need, no more, no less. Your environmental conscience will be clear, and your wallet will be heavier. This phase ends with a professional set of plans and permits ready to be translated into a real system.
With these plans our construction crews will be ready to improve your site. Construction on your home or business should be as quick and as painless as possible. Our electricians and laborers will greet you with a smile and leave you with a new solar power system. We understand the value of working quickly but we do not sacrifice safety or quality to do so.
Commissioning and closeout
With any large home improvement project there are regulations, permits, and bureaucrats to contend with. We have jumped through these hoops many times and are happy to do so for our fellow Hawaiians. The project ends when we commission your system by making sure that it is safe and functional. Once we have closed out your project your new photovoltaic system will start generating clean renewable energy.
The closing of your project is the beginning of your comprehensive operation and maintenance policy. If you experience any problems with your system, we will dispatch an electrician to your site at no charge to you for up to two years after installation. There are also options for longer O&M policies as well as annual panel cleaning. Solar panel systems are notoriously reliable with many manufacturers offering 20 – 25 year warranties.
Hawaii has set an ambitious precedent for the United States in terms of solar penetration. Oahu and Maui both boast solar penetration rates of 20%. This is a fantastic cultural and technical achievement. However, it has also placed a large strain on our local utilities.
During the day from 9 am to 5 pm most people are at work. At this time the demand for energy is relatively low. Conversely solar photovoltaic systems are producing their maximum output at this time. Later in the evening, particularly from 7 pm to 9 pm the demand for energy rises rapidly. At the same time the output from solar panels tapers off with the setting of the sun.
HECO is in charge of regulating this rollercoaster. They are responsible for ensuring high power quality. Power quality is defined as an electric networks ability to supply clean and stable power to the grid. In other words, HECO must be able to consistently supply power within specific voltage and frequency ranges amongst other requirements. In order to do so HECO must have enough generating capability to provide power at peak demand.
Every year as more Hawaiians opt into solar the roller coaster gets bumpier. During the day HECO is providing the minimum amount of power that it can in order to maintain power quality. In the evening it must rapidly ramp up its energy production to deal with the loss of solar generation as well as the increasing energy demand.
As a result of this HECO has been forced to end all Net Energy Metering (NEM) and Customer Grid Supply (CGS) programs for new customers. If these programs were left unabated the electrical network would begin to produce more than 100% of the load during peak daylight hours. This would unbalance the grid which would result in severe electrical damage.
Batteries are the unequivocal solution to the problems we are facing in Hawaii. Home battery storage systems would allow energy to be stored during the peak hours of the day. Therefore, the grid would not be at risk of rising over 100% of the load. Furthermore, HECO will be able to purchase power from solar users during the evening in order to reduce the stress on the grid. It is a win-win scenario.
The drawback of battery storage systems is their prohibitive cost. At this time a reliable battery storage system may double the cost of a photovoltaic system. However, the solar industry, since its inception, has been a robust competitor in the energy market. Every year photovoltaic panels become more efficient for a lower price. The same trend has been established with batteries, it is only a matter of time before they are adopted on a massive scale.
At PhotonWorks Engineering we have embraced this new technology. We are working with manufacturers from around the world to find reliable, cost effective battery storage systems for our customers. Recently in partnership with Ensync a manufacturer of battery storage system we have engineered and built Hawaii’s first large scale solar power and battery storage system for Century West. This system is also the debut of Hawaii’s first Power Purchase Agreement (PPA).
Where other solar companies may have lost their footing, PhotonWorks has found its stride. We will face any challenge be it technical, political, or economic in order to continue providing clean affordable energy to the good people of Hawaii.
PhotonWorks employs a wide variety of professionals in order to meet the many demands of engineering solar solutions. However, our expertise is not limited to photons. We provide a wide variety of electrical services in order to better serve our community. This includes but is not limited to:
- Installation and maintenance of lighting systems
- Heating/Cooling systems
- Solar Hot Water
- Analyzing and monitoring energy use
- Architectural and interior design
Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) are an excellent resource for massively reducing your energy bill. PhotonWorks encourages everyone to switch over LED lighting systems. Here Are ten good reasons to do so.
With an average life expectancy up to 100,000 hrs, at 8 hrs per day, the projected life span could be 12-15 yrs before replacement is needed
With an average of 80% -90% of energy converted to white light and only 10% loss of energy disbursement;compared to traditional inefficient lighting that only has a 20% efficiency rating of conversion of energy used to produce light while 80% is lost as heat. Due to their long life span, they have significant savings over the replacement, maintenance and labor costs associated with traditional light bulbs.
LED’s are 100% recyclable since they are free of toxic materials unlike traditional fluorescent bulb that contain a multitude of materials including mercury that are toxic for the environment. The LED’s long life span also saves production materials & costs of traditional incandescent & fluorescent bulbs.
LED’s are extremely durable and resistant to shock, vibration and weather conditions. Great solutions for outdoor lighting, traffic lights, parking lots, construction sites and manufacturing sites.
Zero U.V. Emissions
LED’s produce little to no infrared and no UV spectrum, which is beneficial for environments sensitive to damaging UV rays such as art galleries, museums, retail space and offices.
LED’s can be designed and configured in multiple design arrays and applications for the right solutions, LED mood lighting provides significant benefits for our well being, applications include; offices, retail, classrooms and homes.
Operational in Extreme Temperatures
LED’s can withstand extreme heat and cold, which is beneficial for outdoor lighting applications, ie; stadiums, parking lots, city street lighting. Providing reliability and consistency.
LED’s are designed to focus their light in directionality without the use of deflectors or canopies, making for a more efficient use of the light and energy. Well designed LED fixtures are able to direct light to the desired area more effectively and efficiently.
Instant Lighting and Frequent Switching
LED produce light upon switching instantly versus fluorescent bulbs that require time to warm up, and frequent switching does not degrade its effectiveness.
LED’s produce 1000 lumens per 10 watt of required energy, compared to Incandescents that require 75 watts, or CFL’s that use 25 watts, LED’s convert energy more efficiently into light instead of losing energy as heat.
We have designed and implemented high efficiency LED projects on large scales. The resulting savings are higher than you might expect.