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Solar power draws Sunshine Coast businesses together

Two Sunshine coast businesses — Auzion, a supplier of solar systems, and Latronics, a local manufacturer of inverters — have announced a strategic alliance to provide the country with greater access to solar systems. (Pictured here are Mark Leckenby (L) and Klaus Langer.)

Auzion began operations just over two years ago and have been involved in sustainability research with the University of the Sunshine Coast. “We have devel oped AuziMax Energy Maximiser which will be fully commercialised in the first quarter of 2011 after the completion of a pilot study,” Auzion managing director, Mark Leckenby, told PACE.

For customers with a solar grid connect system, AuziMax can help maximise the amount of power fed into the grid. AuziMax allows users to monitor all of their building’s energy needs (including incoming mains, power circuits, lights, hot water and air condi tioning) in conjunction with the solar power generated. Through a secure web portal, users can view an accurate break down of their energy usage. The device allows users to establish energy alerts to optimise usage in line with set targets.

Auzion is keen on using Australian- made products wherever possible. This drove Leckenby to develop AuziRack — a solar panel mounting system made from anodised aluminium which is rated for all Australian cyclone zones. He believes locally developed and produced systems are better than available imported prod ucts. “We were able to reduce the number of components needed, making the system more streamlined,” he noted. The only component not made in Australia is the solar panel. “And these come with a 25-year performance warranty,” he adds.

According to Latronics CEO Klaus Langer, their research and development efforts come on the back of 25 years of manufacturing experience. “We can’t say too much about current projects until they are ready for release to the market but we are collaborating on innovative communications for a complete residential energy management system,” he said.

“We have been working with Auzion for some time,” said Langer. “This new alliance means both companies can work more closely in the booming solar sector.”

In 2009, the Australian Government set an ambitious renewable energy target of 20 per cent by 2020, which means that one-fifth of Australia’s electricity must be supplied by renewable sources such as solar power. Teamed with the implementation of numerous govern ment-based incentive schemes and the anticipated soaring energy prices over the next decade, Auzion and Latronics are gearing up for increasing demand.

“We live in one of the sunniest places in one of the sunniest countries in the world, with an average of seven hours of sun a day, an ideal climate for solar panels,” Leckenby said. “People can make real contributions to the environment and also save money by installing efficient solar grid connect systems.”

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