Making solar cost-effective

Eletricity always flows with Low Carbon Exchange and Eseye

Energy saving with the Low Carbon Exchange

Eseye’s hardware with the AnyNet SIM provided the Low Carbon Exchange with reliable connectivity, optimised data usage and a reduction in unnecessary manpower costs.

Situation

Low Carbon Exchange (LCX) is a specialist provider of solar panels and other renewable energy technologies to social housing in the UK.

Emissions targets and clean energy cashback schemes (commonly known as the Feed In Tariff) have incentivised investment in technologies that reduce reliance on fossil fuels and introduce a situation where householders and organisations such as UK housing associations become energy generators – not just consumers.

Commonly PV solar panels and air-source heat pumps are installed in social housing, providing tenants’ heating, hot water and electricity generation. A housing association can help a tenant save as much as £300 a year on domestic energy bills by ‘gifting’ the energy generated on site. When both solar panels and heat pumps are installed, heating and hot water costs are significantly reduced for most of the year and in some cases properties can periodically become energy neutral.

The savings are substantial but the increased accountability and complexity demands sophisticated and reliable management systems and the scale of LCX’s accounts – they often fit more than 1000 solar installations per month – means they require a transparent and efficient way of remotely managing and evaluating large numbers of devices. Managing these devices must in most cases be done wirelessly; social housing tenants cannot be required to provide broadband access for remote monitoring. Using a consumer grade router also introduces risks of tampering, service degradation and connectivity theft.

Tamperproof, intelligent IoT management

Eseye worked with LCX to design a managed M2M solution that delivers intelligent management of the remote process, security and robust connectivity. The Eseye Sunbird router has an AnyNet SIM permanently fitted on its circuit board which provides global, cross-network coverage. This unique embedded SIM also enables the router to be set to connect only to the authenticated Eseye APN, removing the risk of tampering and connectivity theft.

Eseye streamlines the setup process with the Sunbird router’s cross-network coverage, so that during installation engineers can be confident of data coverage without needing a range of network contracts and multiple network-specific devices and SIM cards. Eseye data shows that mobile network connectivity using AnyNet is up to 10 times more reliable than consumer broadband.

Invaluable business insight provided 

After installation, Eseye’s proprietary intelligent management system provides valuable insight into the device’s performance. Costs incurred by dispatching technical staff to remote process issues can also be minimised through the remote analysis and management that the Eseye system enables. Given that the cost of a call-out ranges from £150 to £225 a solution that prevents unnecessary demands on resources is a great benefit.

Never without warm water

For a developing industry that provides essential utilities, reliability is crucial. Analysis of the data from each system is used to schedule proactive maintenance visits, ensuring tenants are never left without heating or warm water. Technicians can be deployed only when necessary and can be well equipped to resolve any issues on-site.

We are pleased to have seen a vast increase in uptake over the last few years and we expect to generate more than 5GW of electricity and £2.5m in income for charities this year alone. Eseye understands the challenges of M2M and we have been very pleased with the way our support queries have been handled. Eseye’s phones are always answered and the whole support team consists of qualified engineers who know my solutions and quickly resolve my issues.
Mark Skingley Low Carbon Exchange

Helping tenants reduce bills

The M2M solution delivered by Eseye to Low Carbon Exchange enables LCX and housing associations nationwide to share data and manage processes effectively, while tenants are able to reduce bills and feed surplus electricity back into the national grid. The efficient and secure exchange of data is central to this, and in creating a customised and flexible solution we can reduce the overall costs of lifetime ownership.

It is really rewarding to see how Low Carbon Exchange is using Eseye’s M2M solutions to improve the everyday lives of their Housing Association customers’ low-income tenants, both by deploying green energy as well as reducing costs. We are proud to support the UK’s move towards a greener and cleaner future for us all.
Paul Marshall COO, Eseye

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