Homeowner Solar PV? A Non Starter in the Boston Area12 May

SBIR CONSULTANT NOTE ON MARKET ANALYSIS FOR RENEWABLE ENERGY

SBIR Consultant – Market Analysis: There are many issues of importance to be stressed in writing a competitive SBIR proposal. One of these is market analysis: urgent need for your innovation, your competition, showstopper issues, cost, and policy/legal impediments. The blog below is an example of a snapshot market analysis where solar is off to a slow start, primarily because the cost of electricity in Massachusetts is considerably lower, than, say Hawaii. Thus, the topic below illustrates the absence of financial ‘pain’ as an impediment to solar growth in this region. Does your innovation face this type of problem?

After conducting a survey of several towns in the Boston area, I noticed that there are relatively few residential rooftop installations compared to the number of residences in a given town (e.g., There are 40 residential solar PV facilities compared to nearly 26,000 homes in the Reading Municipal Light Department region). Median household income here is about $100K, while electricity cost is approximately $0.14/kWh. With this income level and Federal/state/local financial support, you might think that more homeowners would be motivated to pursue solar PV. However, the cost of electricity here is not an issue compared to Hawaii (e.g., $0.27/kWh). Thus, there are few such residential Solar PV installations in the Boston region.

Conclusion: installation of residential solar PV is primarily a financially driven decision. Sadly, climate change and environmental stewardship are insignificant factors at best. 

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About Dr. Everson

Prior to forming this SBIR consultant practice, Dr. Jeffrey Everson was director of business development for QinetiQ North America’s Technology Solutions Group (previously Foster-Miller, Inc.).

Dr. Everson has won and been the principal investigator for several SBIR programs, including a Phase I program for NASA, a Phase I project for the U.S. Air Force, and Phase I and II contracts from the U.S. Department of Transportation. For the Phase II program, he received a Tibbetts Award for exemplifying the best in SBIR achievement.

Previously Dr. Everson held senior scientist positions at Battelle Memorial Institute, The Analytic Sciences Corporation (TASC), Honeywell Electro Optics Systems Division, and Itek Optical Systems Division.

He holds a PhD in physics from Boston College and a MS/BS in physics from Northeastern University.

Contact

For more information about how JHEverson Consulting can help your company with its SBIR and STTR proposals, please contact Jeff Everson.

JHEverson Consulting is based in the Boston area but consults for clients throughout North America. It also is supported by affiliated consultants.