Extensible Energy has released new features for DemandEx, its demand charge reduction software that works without energy storage. The most notable improvement is HardCap, an intelligent algorithm that automatically blocks demand spikes over a pre-set kilowatt level. When enabled, HardCap allows small solar PV buildings to limit demand spikes and qualify for an energy-only utility rate, saving thousands of dollars for demand charges while improving solar ROI.
“We developed HardCap because our commercial solar installation partners told us about relatively small commercial PV buildings that rarely went over the utility’s demand threshold, yet still triggered thousands in annual demand charges,” said John Powers, CEO of Extensible Energy. “HardCap is for those customers. It’s not for every solar PV building, but when it fits, the savings are tremendous.”
With DemandEx’s standard configuration, the software intelligently monitors solar and building loads and finds ways to reduce demand charges by about 30 percent. In many utility service territories, with HardCap enabled, Extensible says DemandEx will 100 percent eliminate demand charges.
How is that possible?
It does this through an enhanced whole-building load and solar PV output monitoring that is programmed to curtail usage whenever total electrical loads exceed the utility’s pre-defined demand threshold.
For example, many utilities require a customer to pay monthly demand charges if demand exceeds 100 kW in any of the preceding 12 months. Even with an appropriately sized solar array, a cloud could create an unavoidable demand spike, authorizing demand charges for the next 12 months. When DemandEx’s HardCap feature is enabled, total demand is always capped below the 100-kW limit, allowing the building owner to qualify for a tariff with no demand charges.
For larger buildings that routinely exceed the utility’s demand charge rate threshold, DemandEx’s normal load-flexibility algorithms can still automatically reduce demand charges by about 30% in commercial solar buildings. No batteries required.
In addition to HardCap, Extensible Energy has also released a new DemandEx web dashboard that gives solar installers the ability to view data from multiple DemandEx solar projects. Users can now create and save their own custom views, see load flexibility actions that DemandEx is performing in real time, and get access to additional support and resources for their sites.
— Solar Builder magazine