Andalay solar, a subisidiary of AKeena solar has recently partneredwith Westinghouse and is preparing for a big push into the residentialmarkets.
Akeena is a large installer of PV systems in California and in 2007they partnered with Enphase to design a module with a prewired inverterattached. They then took the Enphase inverter and the module and ran it through the UL testing. The resulting product is UL listed andproduced AC power directly from the panel. What they have done isbasically combined two steps in the process (therefore simplifying theinstallation process).
They have been having pretty good success and have actually startedselling some of their panels at Lowes and Home Depot.
This latest announcement by Andalay that they will be changing andusing the name of Westinhouse is a marketing move to try to capturelarge market share. They already have an innovative, game changingproduct, and now they will be recognized as one of the oldest andrespected names in appliances and electricity.
We are excited to see how this partnership will play itself out.This product in the mainstream does have the ability to radicallysimplify solar installations and begin to drive down the price.
At SimpleEnergyWorks we are Andalay dealers (we can install/sell) and will soon be selling Westinghouse (they officially change their nameover this summer).
An interesting development in the microinverter market that willaffect solar implementation by the average DIY homeowner and ACelectricians.