This is Out Island Energy
Despite its many merits and the promise of a greener future, renewable energy has historically been plagued by misinformation, an often intimidating complexity, and a general perception that it requires significant lifestyle compromises to work effectively.
Enter Out Island Energy. We deliver on the promise, working with you from your initial energy needs analysis all the way until we ultimately watch you flip the big switch on commissioning day. We are an engineering consulting firm, sifting through the technology and terminology to champion a system that succeeds in every measure. We believe in systems sized to your lifestyle, not the other way around. We exhaustively research and choose the tools and the talent necessary to best meet your needs and fulfill your energy desires, while keeping a practical eye on the cost/benefits of our solution. We act as your energy agent and ensure that the system(s) that you invest in ultimately perform at a level that meets or exceeds your level of expectation. It's that simple.
We act as your energy agent and ensure that the systems that you invest in ultimately perform at a level that meets or exceeds your level of expectation."
With over ten years of personal experience living off the grid, we at Out Island Energy understand the realities of living and working in remote locations. We design systems that we know will work because we have lived with them. We build systems that will weather hurricanes and withstand corrosive salt environments. We arrive on the job fully prepared for the demands of a complete installation, with all the requisite tools and equipment on hand from the outset. We don’t waste your time and money waiting on overlooked parts or forgotten tools.
For installations in coastal or island areas, we have the option of bringing our lodging with us in the form of a large cruising catamaran, thus eliminating one of the major hurdles to construction in remote locations. We have an intimate understanding of the customs and duty process, and have extensive relationships in the international shipping industry.
Experience the Out Island Energy difference.
In short, Out Island Energy is uniquely positioned with the knowledge, experience, and contacts to ensure your renewable energy system is designed, purchased, delivered, and installed flawlessly.
We are currently producing a project site walkthrough & informative shorts about renewables. Join our mailing list if you would like to know when they become available.
Of the total amount of energy produced by the Sun, only 45 one-billionths of a percent reaches the Earth. But just one hour’s worth of that tiny fraction is enough energy to power the entire planet for a year. Amazing.
To put it another way, we only need to capture .02% of the solar energy that hits the Earth, or just 5% of the available wind energy, to completely power the planet.
Why choose Renewables?
Truth is like the sun, you can shut it out for a while, but it ain’t going away."
Unlike oil, natural gas, and other non-renewable energy sources, the Sun isn’t going away. Neither is the wind. Consider this: of the total amount of energy produced by the Sun, only 45 one-billionths of a percent reaches the Earth. But just one hour’s worth of that tiny fraction is enough energy to power the entire planet for a year. Amazing. To put it another way, we only need to capture .02% of the solar energy that hits the Earth, or just 5% of the available wind energy, to completely power the planet. The truth is, the energy is there, abundant and free. And we have the technology to harness that energy and power our lives, without resorting to sources that pollute our air, ravage our environment, threaten our security, and which will, ultimately, run out. The argument makes itself.
We only need to capture .02% of the solar energy that hits the Earth, or just 5% of the available wind energy, to completely power the planet."
If you have readily accessible power from an electric company (i.e. you are “on the grid”), it can be tempting to dismiss the need for renewable energy. Electricity has been historically very inexpensive, obscuring the efficacy and necessity for supplemental production. By all indications, though, energy is going to become increasingly more expensive as global demand grows and we continue to produce as much as 90% of our energy through the combustion of fossil fuels. With this in mind, investing in renewable energy sources is analogous to any other long-term investment. You are effectively buying your energy up front, at today’s prices, and with a net metering agreement, excess power is actually sold back to the power company. In areas prone to power brown–or black-outs, renewables also offer an opportunity to bring consistency to your power supply. The addition of energy storage (i.e. batteries) to a grid-connected system can provide a backup to bridge the gaps in the grid, providing your sensitive electronics with smooth, reliable power.
Energy is going to become increasingly more expensive as global demand grows & we continue to produce as much as 90% of our energy through the combustion of fossil fuels."
If you live away from the grid, the argument becomes even more obvious. In most cases, the only practical alternatives to renewables are diesel generators, which carry with them a host of attendant problems. Not only is there the considerable and recently volatile cost per gallon of diesel, but in many off-grid applications the logistics and costs of delivering that fuel to the site become significant issues. Small-scale diesel power generation is also considerably less efficient than a centralized plant, and this problem is compounded by the fact that these generators must run continuously, whether demand is there or not. Thus we arrive at examples of huge generators running for hours just to power a few lights, and in the process wasting thousands of gallons of fuel each year. Diesel generators require frequent maintenance and are prone to mechanical problems. Frankly, they’re loud and smelly and dirty. Off-grid renewable energy systems incorporate a means of energy storage, which allows you to use only the energy you need at a given moment, without throwing the bulk of it away. Hybrid inverters allow you to keep the diesel generator as a backup and supplement to your renewable sources, ensuring a seamless delivery of power. And renewable energy systems require far less maintenance, and have much longer operating lives, than a primary diesel generator. This reliability and sustainability become all the more desirable in remote locations.
Myth: Renewables aren’t practical in the real world.
Truth: Renewables are scaleable, seamless & use mature technologies.
There is a common belief that renewable energy is only realistic for small cabins or seasonal-use homes that require minimal energy. This is most decidedly not the case. Solar and wind harvesting are mature technologies, having been employed in various forms and at different scales for decades.
The current generation of equipment incorporates sophisticated power management features that can provide reliable, seamless power where and whenever you need it.
Most systems are modular, allowing you to start small and build your infrastructure as your ambitions, funds, and energy demands change over time. There really is no limit to what you can power with renewable energy. Even air conditioning, long considered outside the scope of practical systems, can be accommodated with today's systems.
Myth: You have to significantly alter your lifestyle to include renewables.
Truth: Renewable energy systems can be thoroughly customized.
Again, renewable energy systems can be scaled to almost any size, meaning that a system can be designed to meet the demands of your lifestyle, without requiring compromises or concessions.
You don’t have to live a frugal lifestyle to make these systems work. Out Island Energy will assess your energy needs as they are now and will design a system to meet that need and any anticipated growth, without requiring sacrifices on your part.
Dream big, and let Out Island Energy help you make those dreams a reality.
Myth: You have to rewire your home.
Truth: These systems are designed for integration.
Every energy system on the market today is designed to be integrated into your existing electrical system, without any significant rewiring. Everything from your breaker panel out through your residence remains unchanged. We simply change the way power is delivered to that panel, interrupting either the supply from the power company or from your generators, depending on your specific situation.
Feel free to contact us with questions regarding incorporating renewable energy into your existing home or business.
By far Out Island Energy’s most ambitious project to date, “Harvest Moon” challenges us to create an off-grid renewable energy system capable of powering a large residence complex on a remote island while maintaining grid quality or better reliability and having capacity enough to handle all the complex’s loads, including air conditioning. The customers expressed a strong desire to limit generator run time as much as possible, but also that the system be transparent and seamless. Because of their remote location, they need a system that is both incredibly robust and extremely reliable. They anticipate using the residence a large portion of the year.
The property, consisting of a duplex guest house, a caretaker/service building (which houses the inverter and the batteries), a rather sizable main house, and a recreation building.
- Power required for Main House, duplex Guest House, Caretaker House, Garage, Dock, Wood Shop, 2 Pools, and Recreation Room
- 7,500 total square feet of air conditioned space
- 400A service at 208/120VAC 3-phase
- Major Loads include: 16 tons of A/C, 1500 gpd R/O water maker, commercial refrigeration and ice makers, ‘infinity’ pool and associated pumps, electric clothes dryers, well pumps, pressure pumps
To meet these energy needs, Out Island Energy partnered with the California-based engineering firm Blue Oak Energy to design a rock-solid system. The sheer size of the anticipated loads immediately forced us into the realm of industrial telecommunications inverters and commercial-grade batteries and PV modules. The resulting design promises to deliver up to 100kW of power reliably, with very little interaction from the end user.
The system functions much like its smaller consumer-grade cousins: the inverter/charger acts as the ‘brains’ of the system, coordinating the flow of power between PV, batteries, house loads, and generators. Under normal conditions, the PV array will charge the batteries, while the inverter converts that DC power into the 208/120V 3-phase AC power used by the house. There is enough storage capacity to carry the system through the night and, if need be, a few days of heavily overcast skies. If the batteries begin to get depleted, the inverter will automatically start one of the generators and transfer the house loads over to it, while simultaneously charging the batteries. When the batteries are completely recharged, the inverter shuts the generator back down and resumes normal operation. There are several levels of redundancy to ensure power can always be delivered to the outlets when desired.
- percent -
Percent of total energy demand offset with renewable sources.
- gallons -
Gallons of diesel or kWh of electricity saved with OIE's solution.
- tons -
Tons of CO2 emissions eliminated with OIE's solution.
- years -
Return on Investment - the number of years to pay off OIE's solution with cost of energy savings at current applicable rates.
This project is currently in the final stages of PV installation, and performance data will be posted upon completion.
The Out Island Energy Solution
This system conservatively promises to reduce the owner’s fuel consumption by 35,000 gallons per year, which at today’s prices translates into roughly $150,000 in annual savings and a return-on-investment of less than 5 years.
- SatCon Powergate 100kW Hybrid Inverter
- 53kW Sunpower PV array
- C&D 2500Ah @ 270VDC Lead Acid Battery Bank
- 11 AET Solar Water Heating Collectors (all hot water supply and pool heating)
- (2) Caterpillar Olympian 100kW Diesel Generator
- Infrastructure for future addition of wind power
- Analyze energy usage habits
- Research and design an energy system sized to meet your needs
- Arrange and/or supervise installation
Starting with some broad-strokes discussions of your energy desires, and budget, Out Island Energy will analyze your energy usage habits and design an energy system sized to meet your needs. From a small system designed only to supplement your power supply, to large-scale systems capable of powering an entire community, we will tailor the design to best meet your needs. We then research and bring together a turn-key system, complete down to the nuts and bolts, and arrange for installation.
Depending on the scope of the project and its location, we will either do the work completely in-house, or will outsource the work to qualified local contractors. Regardless, Out Island Energy will be there to ensure that the end product is exactly what was agreed upon. Again, we are here to act as your personal renewable energy advocates, organizing and facilitating the entire process so that you can feel confident that you are getting the best value for your money.
- Energy Needs Analysis & Site Assessment
- Renewable Energy System Design & Sizing
- Renewable Energy Consulting
- Project Management
- Vendor Selection & Consulting
- Shipping Coordination
- Equipment Selection, Estimation & Purchasing
Beginning in 2011, we will be sending occasional emails with renewable opportunities, informative articles & new offers.