Tigo Energy Raises $10 Million
Tigo Energy has raised $10 million to march toward commercial production of its solar panel monitoring system.
The Los Gatos, Calif.-based startup got the second round of fundingfrom ICV, Matrix Partners, OVP Venture Partners and Clal Energy. Thecompany previous raised $6 million last year.
Founded in 2007, Tigo has seen its monitoring system deployed in 18projects in the United States, Europe and Japan. The company’s deviceis attached to each panel in a system to harvest as much energy fromeach panel as possible. Currently, most of the solar energy system isstrung together so that when one panel isn’t performing well because ofit’s in the shade or covered in debris, it lowers the performances ofthe rest of the panels in the system.
Tigo’s system also comes with a software to monitor each panel’spower output. The startup claims that its system would squeeze 20percent more energy from each system.
Other companies have developed hardware to combat the same problem. Enphase Energy and SolarBridge Technologies,for example, promote the use of microinverters instead of a centralizedinverter for converting direct current from each panel to alternatingcurrent for feeding the grid. Using microinverters would ensure thatthe power produced from each panel is harvested. Enphase andSolarBridge also offer monitoring software as part of the package.
Tigo isn’t developing microinverters. Its approach would be more akin to what National Semiconductor’s new product, SolarMagic,a device that would be attached to each panel to squeeze more powerfrom each panel and prevent the poor performing panels from affectingthe power output of better ones.
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