Invitation to install & supply off-grid solar system

Installers and suppliers of off-grid solar and battery systems and products are invited to offer their systems for an inner Sydney terrace, in NSW, Australia.

The terrace is not connected to mains grid electricity or town water or sewer. It is connected to town gas but that will be disconnected later this year.


Date for submission of expressions of interest is now:      Thursday 13 April 2017

The invitation in English (Chinese and German language versions available on request) with technical and other details may be downloaded here.

The Invitation to supply & install an off-grid solar and battery system is issued and managed by Sustainable Future Group.

Upon submission of your expression of interest Sustainable Future Group will automatically provide to you two years of data of energy use, energy production, inverter and battery performance, including outages and other performance data. 

To the best of our knowledge there is no comparable ‘in-the-field’ data publicly available.


Key dates

Submission of expression of interest are due:         

-       4pm April 7th, 2017 (Australian Eastern Standard Time)

Negotiations and a decision are intended be completed within two weeks, ie on or before 21 April 2017.

Roof fixture which once held main grid wires to my house is now a sculpture on my wall; an off-grid action figure.

Roof fixture which once held main grid wires to my house is now a sculpture on my wall; an off-grid action figure.


More technical and operating data is provided in the invitation documents.

There is an existing off-grid system in place which will be replaced in whole or part depending on the replacement system.

The installers and product suppliers for the existing system are unable to offer explanations for the system not providing promised power and reliability, or to provide acceptable recommendations. *

The invitation

The invitation is for my house and there is a 2 minute 20 second video about it here, Sydney’s Sustainable House.

I don’t live off-grid just for myself.  I live off-grid to trial and to show options, create and publish real-life data for others, to give hope through action and accountability. 

This off-grid for electricity journey is incomplete. 

When complete, and the new replacement system is installed soon, the project will show what is feasible.

In the next newsletter I will explain pitfalls and solutions for suppliers, installers and buyers of solar systems in Australia.

Until then, remember: it's the amount of power to be generated that is being installed and bought - not merely the things on the site; merely having solar panels, inverter or batteries does not mean the anticipated amount of power is being generated; more details are in earlier blogs and in my book, Sustainable House.

For the moment the sun comes up each day for us to harvest her riches - thanks for that.


POSTSCRIPT 14 May 2017:

*  Data is key for solar: 

It's now clear that the Alpha-ess batteries and inverter are producing around 46% of the promised amount of power, have unexplained outages every 1 and a half days over two years, and were the wrong products for the project.

I get real time data from my solar projects to know whether they're producing the promised amount of power; so should we all.  

The data for the two year trial of the Alpha-ess batteries installed by Australia Wide Solar shows they're under-performing - delivering just 46% of the promised amount of power.  I do not recommend these batteries, related inverters or installers. I'm replacing the batteries with other products and different installers.