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Each electric power box is a node that interconnects, using normal wire to form a local grid. Our use of all direct current at a common voltage (100 volts in Japan, 120 volts in the U.S., 200 volts elsewhere) simplifies the equipment, lowers the cost and improves efficiency.
Our DC grids can form within a house and between neighbors.
Our direct current grids provide at least three advantages:
1. direct current (not AC) avoids inefficient conversions and control systems. In particular DC (direct current) allows automatic regulation of power flow to where power is needed by prioritizing each box or connected load to only take power when the priority voltage is satisfied. Because of this, excess electricity (at mid-day) automatically dumps into loads such as hot water heaters;
2. solar panels wired in series (110-135 volts) feed connected appliances typically with merely a single transistor between the solar panels and the end use, avoiding inefficient and expensive voltage transformation and control. Compare this with alternative systems that require several pieces of expensive equipment that have to alter both voltage and current type (DC to AC) via massaging the solar power through a variety of circuits, with associated losses; and
3. the DIY grid system overcomes the overcast/rainy day problem by providing power when direct sunlight is not possible. Many panels spread out over a wide area collaborate to feed power to an individual user. It is quite feasible to carry out high power activities such as running an air conditioner or powering a range top during rainy days without losing efficiency (unlike the legacy AC systems), based on our collaborative configuration.
To start a grid or add on to an existing grid, a customer selects specific boxes needed. Each box can connect to others via wire from home center to form a network:
* each box is small, very cheap, has a controllable priority and can be connected to solar panels: the network expands easily and with automatic regulation
* batteries can be added to power heat pumps and microwave ovens at night more efficiently.