Solar Energy Solutions for Condo, Apartment, and Townhouse Owners in Minnesota

Overcoming the Challenges of Going Solar in Multifamily Homes

Recent research shows that the percentage of residential solar installations is significantly higher for single-family homes than for multifamily homes, such as condos, apartments, and townhouses. Our survey indicates that there are several challenges that make homeowners and associations hesitant to adopt solar, despite the availability of different federal and state incentives, including:

1. Higher installation costs for solar on multifamily homes, particularly on shared roofs that require additional approval from homeowner associations.

2. Higher costs for low-rise buildings with shared roofs in condos and townhouses.

3. Individual system costs are higher due to smaller size, according to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).

4. Limited or no access to federal tax credits, which require individual solar systems to be larger than 4kW to qualify.

5. Limited or no access to state and local incentives for residential solar installations done through associations.

These challenges result in a higher cost of solar, making it difficult for communities to install solar.

However, we have solutions to help you overcome these challenges and enjoy the benefits of solar energy. Our award-winning technology and expert knowledge enable us to find an optimized system solution that lowers costs, increases energy production, and extends system service lifetime. We also have proprietary solutions that improve system lifetime and reduce costs.

We can help you design the system, select the best components, find the right installer, manage the project, and navigate the incentive system for owners and associations.

With our help, you can install solar and enjoy the lower cost of the system, full access to federal tax credits, and the benefits of state and local incentives.

Contact us today to learn more about our solutions for solar energy in multifamily homes.

IBTSC has become an American Made Network Gold Connector

Sept. 2021

On Sept. 2, 2021, we are pleased to announce that the IBTSC R&D team was selected as an American Made Network Gold Connector based on our work contributed to the American Made CHallenge and American Made Network.

In addition, we are pleased to know that the IBTSC R&D team became the first team that both served as a leader for teams winning an American Made Challenge, and as a connector who supported a team to win an American Made Challenge in the following year.

“We have received tremendous support from the American Made Network when we developed our Nano Heatsink technology to improve Solar module life time. We are happy to be able to contribute our effort to help other teams and companies for their technology success and winning the American Made Challenges” said by Dr. Kaizhong Gao, the CEO and Chief Scientist of IBTSC.


DOE Award Winning Technology, Dec 2020, April 2021

Solar panel loss conversion efficiency (CE) when heated up. Only until recently, scientists started to understand the mechanism causing this light induced degradation (LID). Thermal management is one of the major issues for flat panel solar energy productions. Commercial solar PV products mostly convert solar energy to electricity at a conversion efficiency (CE) of around 20%, while the majority of the solar energy (typically >70%) was absorbed to heat up the solar panel before eventually dissipating to the environment.

Unfortunately, there is no practical solution in the market to mitigate the problem with reasonable cost yet. This means, in the places and times when the solar power is at its peak value, most of the solar panels will have a CE loss, which reduces the energy production and increases LCOE. In many situations, this reduction of CE causes solar panels to absorb more energy, which heats up solar panel temperature even more.

Based on the field failure analysis, extreme conditions such as thermal stress in the hot spot in solar panels speed up the failure. To extend solar service lifetime from 25(30)-50 years, a valid solution to remove/reduce extreme conditions is necessary.

IBTSC R&D team has developed a Nano-Heatsink (Nano-HS) technology to reduce solar panel peak temperature and to lower the LCOE of solar energy. This technology has been recently demonstrated and won American Made Solar Prize Round 4 Ready stage and Go stage competition. The complete performance demonstration in the field and the reliability measurement will be conducted by Fall 2021.

Contact us if you are interested in working with us to get this technology to your product, or want to collaborate with us in any way.

Solar energy efficiency improvement

Heatsink Technology to Improve Energy Efficiency

Solar panels and solar power generations has been widely adopted over the past decades. One of the major issues for flat panel solar energy productions is that as more energy is produced, the photovoltaic panels (PV) panel temperature increases and the conversion efficiency (CE) reduces 1. Only until recently, scientist starts to claim that the mechanism causing this light induced degradation has been understood 2. There is no practical solution yet. In the meantime, the commercial product mostly has CE at around 20% 3.

The majority energy, (typically >70 %) was absorbed, heat up the solar panel and eventually dissipated into the environment. There is tremendous scientific research made to continuous increase the solar panel CE. Every percentage gain in CE gain will lead to large benefits in terms of total energy produced. Heat sink with increased surface area can effectively dissipate energy, reduce temperature, improve efficiency, reduce degradation and failure rate, ultimately has the potential to reduce levelized cost of energy (LCOE). IBTSC has developed unique materials and design solution to produce cost effective heat sink to reduce PV temperature, without increase installation cost of solar panel. Interested? Please contact us to be our partner or collaborators to get this technology to the market and help to reduce solar energy cost and CO2 emission.

Interested in working with us to get this technology to the next level? If you are solar panel manufacture, investor, installer and is interested to be our partner, please contact us. Let's build technology for further reduce solar energy LCOE, and enable more clean energy to be utilized.