General Electric Plans Net-Zero Energy Home by 2015
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Date posted: 16/07/2009
Posted by: Site Administration
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Computing Power

Using solar panels, wind turbines, appliance monitoring, and on-site energy storage, General Electric has a plan to enable homeowners to cut their annual energy consumption (from the electric grid) to zero, in some cases, and at least minimize consumption in others. GE is piloting the technology this year, and hopes to commercialize the system by 2015.

The GE Net-Zero Home Project encompasses a variety of technologies, as well as consumer incentives. The most expensive part of the project involves on-site power generation through solar panels or wind turbines, where applicable. As GE executives explained during a recent symposium at the company's Global Research Center in Niskayuna, New York, a 3,000-watt solar panel array could be enough to supply all of a home's consumption, and cost about $30,000 to install.

GE is also converting its appliances (for about $10 per appliance) to be able to communicate with a home's smart meter, allowing consumers to find out how much energy individual appliances use. The information will hopefully allow users to control appliances by using them during off-peak times (peak times are usually morning and early evening), encouraged by time-of-use pricing plans.

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