For the first time in 15 months, pv magazine USA reports on site at the Solar and Energy Storage Northeast Expo in Boston.

June 10, 2021

Over 1,500 smiling faces gathered in the Seaport neighborhood of Boston to forge connections and showcase products and services live and in person for the first time since the pandemic. Business cards changed hands, product data sheets were passed around and printed copies of PV magazine were truly distributed by you in the exhibition hall.

The Solar and Energy Storage Northeast Expo took place on June 9th and 10th and attracted nearly 70 exhibitors who showcased their latest innovations and products. And although this event was smaller than in previous years, there was a palpable energy in the air as the element of human connection enabled great discussions.

A similar message came from many attendees: This conference felt like a fresh start. It was shaped by the exchange of powerful ideas and actionable connections.

Buyers and suppliers from over 300 unique organizations explored business solutions, emerging technology, policy initiatives and market dynamics at the event sponsored by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and the Smart Electric Power Alliance (SEPA). All proceeds from the event support the expansion of the solar energy industry through the year-round research and education activities of SEIA and SEPA as well as through the extensive advocacy efforts of SEIA.

Technical summary

Here are some of the tech highlights from this year’s expo.

Fortress power

Fortress Power has presented its eVault Max 18.5 kWh lithium battery storage, which is characterized by increased security, easy installation and scalability.

The device was on display, which was easy for the exhibitors as this design includes wheels for easy installation and maintenance. The device has a forward facing wall that can be removed to access the four cells it contains. Fortress Power says these features save time and result in an hour to two hour installation time.

The Fortress Power battery can be used for backups throughout the home, off-grid storage, peak reduction and demand reduction and can be used on both a private and a small commercial scale. The battery can build up to 20 units in parallel and reaches 370 kWh. The company uses lithium iron phosphate technology, which they believe is a safer and more environmentally friendly option than typical battery elements.

QuickBOLT

With the QB1 Microflashing, QuickBOLT offers a fastening solution that saves material and eliminates the need to remove shingles or underlay. The QB1 is a patented small “puck” that sits on top of a pre-drilled hole that is drilled directly through the shingles and into rafters. Then it is fastened flush with the roof with a sleeve and an “L-shaped” foot.

The company said it had installed over 1 million QuickBOLT brackets with no leaks reported. Additional “miniflashing” smaller than the size of a typical clapboard can be added for even greater watertightness.

GeothinQ

geothinQ develops GIS mapping software for site suitability analysis. Its customizable and easy-to-use GIS platform enables solar developers to search for properties that meet the criteria of a solar project.

The geospatial tool enables the user to make informed decisions by providing data on the proximity of transmission lines and substations, property assessments and feasibility studies, and due diligence. geothinQ is not just a mapping tool, but a team of geospatial experts to support you.

Intelligent

The Californian startup Enteligent showed the SolarUp Rapid Shutdown Module, a Rapid Shutdown Device (RSD) with power electronics at module level (MLPE) for efficient performance optimization. The company said the device will be available in August and will have the benefit of optimizing performance at a price competitive with the standalone RSD.

The Sunspec certified device enables easy installation and maintenance and houses both RSD and MLPE in a single location. SolarUp Single enables shutdown and optimization at module level across two modules, while SolarUp Dual enables shutdown at module level with independent module optimization for two modules.

Enteligent announced that it will soon be launching a quick charger for RVs. This device is charged directly via solar and, according to the company, delivers up to 13% more electricity from panels than conventional charging of electric vehicles. After sunset, the charger pulls out of the storage tank or from the mains. This product will ship in the second quarter of 2022 and can be used for both commercial and personal purposes.

S-5!

S-5! Metal roof solutions presented its PVKIT 2.0, a standing seam metal roof bracket that reduces the total weight and volume of the installed solar system. S-5! says that a standing seam roof already contains integrated “rails” and that their direct fastening uses this property of a metal roof.

The result is what S-5! says: 85% less weight, 25% better load distribution, 70% fewer components and lower material costs compared to rail mounting. The lower weight and smaller component also lead to lower transportation and logistics costs, according to the company.

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