Click. Done? SimpliPHI 6.6 Home Battery Overview | The Pitch

SimpliPHI 6.6 Home Battery Pitch

The new SimpliPHI 6.6 Home Battery launched by Briggs & Stratton is even simpler than the “plug-and-play” cliché. The SimpliPHI 6.6 Home Battery has a wire-free design that simply clicks a battery stack into place in under five minutes.

Backstory: Briggs and Stratton acquired SimpliPHI in 2021, a battery brand that’s specialized in lithium ferro phosphate (LFP) battery chemistry for over a decade. Their combined teams worked with a lot of installers, to hear what they liked and didn’t like about home battery storage installations.

“We wanted to have a product that was very easy for installers to install, to size, and really cut down on the time and some of the errors that can naturally occur in the field,” says Sequoya Cross, VP of Energy Storage with Briggs & Stratton, on The Pitch, a Solar Builder YouTube show.

The result is the SimpliPHI 6.6 Home Battery. On The Pitch, Cross explains how the RapidStak connector works, why there isn’t an internal inverter, and how they’ve improved the performance and safety of their LFP chemistry.

Watch the full 15-min conversation right here. Below are some of the key quotes and moments.

Pain points of battery installation, solved: 0:30

“If you go back in time, everything had terminals and wiring, and people were having to make sure that wire gauge, and their wire lengths were all equal sizes so that we kept balance within a stack of batteries or an array of batteries in an installation. That can lead to complications, and sometimes we’d even see reverse polarity, where people would just have all black wires, for instance, and then say ‘oh wait, where am I at in my system?’

By looking at ways that we could make it easier for the installer, everything just clicks into place. You’re not worrying about wiring anymore. That’s one of the major things. Safety is another. Having batteries that can scale and meet the requirements of code and some of the residential applications has been another struggle that installers have had as well.

SimpliPHI 6.6 Home Battery installation explained

“With the RapidStak connector, all of our power and communications is coming through a single connector, and that connector is embedded into each battery. It’s also embedded into the base. An installer has a choice, depending on how they want to mount the battery. They can either start with a floating wall mount or a floor base. Either of those options are very simple to install.”

“With the RapidStak connector, all your positive and negative connections come into place. You just run your home run, your positive and negative, to your inverter’s DC bus and your comms cable to the inverter or to the EnergyTrak Gateway. And it eliminates exposed terminals. You can’t have, maybe, a wrench or a tool that can fall and create a connection between the terminals and short out.”

“You’re eliminating wire runs, conduit sizing, conduit fill.  Everything inside a conduit, to an AHJ, is very invisible. Are they doing that right? You can get heat, and you can get other things that can become failure points in a system when you’re putting batteries together. But by having a connector that is UL rated as being able to carry the current it does, and eliminating resistance issues at terminals … and all of these things that can contribute to inefficiencies in the system …  you get away from that.”

External vs. internal inverter

“If you look at an all-in-one solution where the inverter and battery are paired together or inside a single enclosure, you’re having to scale both power and energy capacity together at the same time. If you want to expand, you have to jump to another, say, 13 kWh, but you’re also expanding the power output.

“By decoupling these two pieces of equipment with the SimpliPHI 6.6 Home Battery, you can have a varying degree of energy storage available to the customer and different power requirements. You can also do the reverse. If someone has very short duration and higher power requirements, you can have a larger inverter and a smaller battery bank. It allows for a wider variety. We can customize systems for what customers really need, and we can also reduce costs that way by not having to duplicate power equipment.”

“Very often, those systems that have integrated inverters are also requiring still to be AC coupled to something. They’re still requiring other power equipment, either microinverter that are on the roof or even another string inverter that’s tied to it. So there’s still complexity even when you’re looking at these all-in-one solutions.”

Hear about closed-loop communications and inverter partnerships here: 6:53

Why does one SimpliPHI 6.6 Home Battery have 6.65 kWh of capacity?

“For us, 6.65 allowed us to get a three battery stack as close to 20 kilowatt hours as possible. When you see other batteries that are marketed as 5 kWh, they’re actually 5.12, and that’s an important designation when you start looking at the total capacity ratings of different batteries as it applies to code. NFPA 855 is creating constraints in terms of how much battery capacity can be within each stack, and 20 kWh happens to be that magic number.

At 19.95 kWh per three battery stack, it’s a simple and easy way for us to create these capacity limits and then be able to scale multiple stacks together and meet the requirements for 40 kWh in a utility space 80 kWh in a garage or outdoors mounted on your wall.”

Benefits of SimpliPHI LFP batteries

“We navigated UL 9540 very early with some of our previous products. We’re able to prove the efficacy of the chemistry, the safety of the chemistry, by not having unmitigated thermal runaway explosions or fire risks. We are one of the only residential batteries that can be installed in New York City because we understand LFP.

“In addition, the SimpliPHI 6.6 Home Battery has the ability to charge at lower temperatures than any of the batteries we’ve had before. That is based on that chemistry and different modifications to the chemistry that are now allowing us to charge this battery at 14 degrees Fahrenheit or -10 degrees C. We’re also able to discharge it at its full discharge rate at – 20 degrees C.

“On top of that, we’re coupling our BMS firmware and software to curtail charge rate and extend the lifespan of the battery. These batteries have 6,000 cycles at 96% depth of discharge. That’s an improvement of our previous batteries as well.”

Hear more about UL 9540 testing results & what AHJs are looking for: 13:09

— Solar Builder magazine



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