Solar power news keeps getting better. Stem and Kyocera Solar have joined forces to provide both solar panels and an intelligent energy storage system.

Stem says that up to 50% of an energy bill can be based on peak charges. The company’s advanced battery storage and predictive analytics help customers to avoid buying electricity when it is most costly.The Stem system connects behind the meter to analyze energy usage and make beneficial predictions. It has an onsite battery that is charged with electricity when rates are at their lowest. That stored energy can be released when needed, so customers don’t have to buy during peak demand. Stem says its system can save 20% on energy bills.

Of course, Kyocera is a leading solar power photovoltaic modules and systems manufacturer, so it seems perfectly natural that it would join with an intelligent
energy storage company.

“Intelligent energy storage is a natural fit for PV — and our solution integrates seamlessly with Kyocera’s solar technology to bring new value to the commercial market. Kyocera’s expertise in providing turnkey solutions through its technology partners presents a great opportunity for Stem as we expand our offering to solar customers,” explained Stem CEO John Carrington. Kyocera is the first solar power provider to offer the Stem system. It is now available to businesses in California, Hawaii and New York.

One of Stem’s customers is Alsco, a textile manufacturer with over 16,000 employees. After implementing the Stem system, Alsco began to reduce demand charges by about 8-10% per month. Another customer, Intercontinental Hotels, uses a Stem system to store energy and then release it to power elevators when they are in use during peak demand.

It probably isn’t surprising to anyone that commercial solar power is a huge market. According to SEIA, “As of mid-2013, cumulative commercial deployment totaled 3,380 MW at over 32,800 facilities throughout the country, an increase of more than 40 percent over last year.” We may be hearing about how many homeowners are ‘going solar’ but many businesses are too, and this trend is an important one.