Submitted by Andrew on Mon, 07/03/2016 - 09:46
Solar Then Vs Now – How Much Can Change In 8 Years?

We don’t know about you, but 2008 doesn’t seem like that long ago to us.

Yet in the context of solar power, that short span of time from when solar panels first started making their way into Australia, to now, represents a huge shift in affordability and tech.

It’s hard to think that ten years ago there wasn’t really a solar PV panel in sight (especially when you look around Australia’s suburbs today).

Back in 2008 when they first started to become available to homeowners, you’d pay around $3,000 for a 1 kW system (1 kW inverter) – and that was after an $8,000 government rebate and another $1,000 worth of STCs (RECs back then). If you had an extra $500, you could get a bigger inverter (usually 2 kW) so that you could add more panels later – which was considered amazing back then!

If you wanted to add extra panels to your install, they’d cost about $1,500 each and they were only about 150 kW (compared to 250 kW+ today).

A 5 kW system in 2008 was extremely rare because it would cost… wait for it… around $40,000!

Aside from far better affordability, solar panels have come leaps and bounds in technology too.

Panels now perform better in lower light, are much more robust, less sensitive to heat and feature many other technical improvements.

Likewise for solar inverters. Today’s crop often come standard with dual tracking, wireless connectivity and online monitoring of production – all wild, futuristic concepts just eight years ago.

In 2016, you wouldn’t even consider installing a 1 kW system - it’s just too small.

The average size system our customers are choosing today is 3 kW, with many opting for the even bigger (and drastically more affordable) 5 kW option.

What’s next?

Solar power technology continues to change and evolve in really exciting ways. The next ‘revolution’ in solar tech is without a doubt, home battery storage. In 2024 (eek!) – which is only another eight years away, we predict that basically every home that has panels on its roof will have a battery collecting excess energy installed as well.

The best part about home battery storage is that the technology is already available now.

Here’s to the future!