Sonnen Builds Home Battery Systems Into 2,900-Unit Arizona Subdivision
German battery company Sonnen GmbH is setting out to repeat its home-country success in the United States by equipping a 2,900-home subdivision in Prescott Valley, AZ with its standard home storage system.
“For an approximately 1% premium, the homeowners will pay 40 to 60% less to operate their homes than currently available high-performance homes,” Greentech Media reports, citing Dave Everson, CEO of local builder Mandalay Homes.
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“Once built, the companies will have a massive distributed power plant on their hands,” Greentech adds. “With just the first fifth complete, the neighbourhood will have 10 megawatts of dispatchable power at the ready, far beyond the miniscule pilots that pass as virtual power plants these days.”
“Sonnen is a company that likes to get things done: We want the virtual power plant to really exist, and it does exist in Germany,” said U.S. Senior Vice President Blake Richetta. “We’re not going to be paralyzed by pilots anymore in this country.”
Residents won’t have to own or maintain the storage. “Mandalay has wrapped that equipment, along with a modest solar array, high-tech insulation, and other energy-saving measures, into a package that will cost marginally more than high-efficiency homes already on the market,” Greentech notes. “Notably, Mandalay is moving ahead without a utility contract in hand.” Instead, the two companies plan to build the community, then present the virtual power plant to utilities as a distributed energy asset.
Mandalay is “not waiting for the utility companies; they’re doing this with or without them,” Richetta said. “That is the secret sauce to us getting out of ‘paralyzed by pilot’ mode.”