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$37,223 pledged of $125,000 goal
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By Seth Myer
$37,223 pledged of $125,000 goal
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About this project

The Genesis of Sun-Box™

The inspiration for the Sun-Box™ was to provide an easy "off the shelf" solution for solar. There had to be an alternative to complicated and costly grid-tied systems.

The Sun Box™ is a complete, self-contained, solar powered generator in a box.  It captures solar energy and stores it for use throughout the day and night.

Traditional Solar

 A traditional solar power system is grid-connected, and requires an engineer to design the system, an electrician to install, and typically needs approval from the city along with a net-metering agreement from the utility co - a process that can take 2 months+

Having seen the complexities of getting a solar project designed, installed and operational - I knew there had to be a better way..  If we could simplify the implementation of solar, more people could enjoy the benefits of having clean, unlimited power from the sun.

One other limitation of traditional grid-tied solar is the fact that when there is a power outage from the utility side the solar does not work!  Even if it is during the day while the sun is shining.  The only way around this is to install batteries to store the energy, and an automatic transfer switch to switch the power from the grid to the batteries.

Another problem with traditional solar, is that you can not take it with you if you ever move or need to relocate the system.  It is "hard-wired" and structurally attached to your home.

While still connected to the grid, you are "at the mercy" of the utility company's requirements and fees.  You will likely still have a monthly fee just for the "privilege" of having service, and many times there are additional fees for net-metering your solar.

Grid-Free

All of these limitations are resolved by the Sun-Box™  You are not dependent on the grid, because the Sunbox™ is fully autonomous and completely Grid-Free.

The SunBox™ can be relied on every day, and all day (24/7) to provide power for your devices and equipment.  Not only that, it is portable and can be taken with you in the event of an emergency.

Module Types

The Sun-Box is configured for ease of use "right out of the box"!  There are four basic box types; all of which are compatible with each other, yet they serve specific purposes.  All boxes have the same physical dimensions.

The four types are:  Main (M), Storage (S), Generator (G) and G+ (Kickstarter special!)  For a multi-box system, an M box is required.  The M box is the "brains" of the system which combines the power of several boxes and converts the DC power to AC power.

 Additional Storage (S) boxes can be added to the M box to increase the power output and storage capacity.  Generator (G) boxes increase the power output.  The G+ box also has minimal storage capacity and a smaller inverter so that it can operate independently.

Each Sun-Box is rated in kWh's (kilowatt hours), the same unit typically used on your power bill. Your daily kWh usage will give you an idea of how many boxes you would need to free yourself from the utility co.

In the US, the typical household uses between 20 and 40 kWh's per day. In China, the average home uses about 5 kWh's.  The 10 Box System provides 5 kWh's of power, so if you are conservative it is possible to function with only 10 boxes!

Each box is 21-¼” x 46-⅞” x 3” and weighs 38 lbs.

 Rewards:

 

 One Box

Kickstarter Special - has minimal storage capacity, and is an inexpensive way to get started.  Can only be expanded by connecting to an M box.  Does not have WIFI or pure sine-wave inverter (does include modified sine-wave inverter) It aso includes Lithium Ion (Polymer) batteries rather than the LiFePo4
  • 125 Watt-hour battery 
  • 100 Watts solar generating capacity 
  • 400 Watt maximum power output 
  • Lithium Ion batteries
  • Modified sine wave power inverter
  • Includes one (1) G+ box
  • Requires M box for expansion
  • See Energy Chart below to determine what can be powered
  • Kickstarter special!  This box is essentially a "day-time" box that has minimal battery storage

2 Box System

  • 500 Watt-hour battery 
  • 200 Watts solar capacity 
  • 1000 Watt maximum power output
  • Lithium Iron Phosphate batteries (10 year battery)
  • Includes WiFi for monitoring and control
  • Pure sine wave power inverter 
  • Expandable (Includes one M box and one S box)
  • See Energy Chart below to determine what can be powered

 

 4 Box System

  • 1000 Watt-hour battery  
  • 400 Watts solar capacity  
  • 2000 Watt maximum power output
  • Lithium Iron Phosphate batteries (10 year battery)
  • Includes WiFi for monitoring and control
  • Pure sine wave power inverter  
  • Expandable (Includes 2 M boxes and 2 S boxes)
  • See Energy Chart below to determine what can be powered

6 Box System

  • 1000 Watt-hour battery  
  • 600 Watts solar capacity  
  • 2000 Watt maximum power output
  • Lithium Iron Phosphate batteries (10 year battery)
  • Includes WiFi for monitoring and control
  • Pure sine wave power inverter  
  • Expandable (Includes 2 M, 2 S and 2 G boxes)
  • See Energy Chart below to determine what can be powered

10 Box System

  • 1500 Watt-hour battery  
  • 1000 Watts solar capacity  
  • 4000 Watt maximum power output
  • Lithium Iron Phosphate batteries (10 year battery)
  • Includes WiFi for monitoring and control
  • Pure sine wave power inverter  
  • Expandable (Includes 4 M, 2 S and 4 G boxes)
  • See Energy Chart below to determine what can be powered

 

 Energy Chart

Use the following Energy Chart to determine how many Sun-Boxes you need for your application.  The values provided in this table are estimates.  Your specific appliances and devices may vary from what is shown.

In the example (far right column), the devices and appliances shown total to 4.88 kWh's per day, so you would need a 10 box system which is rated for 5 kWh's


Choosing the right Sun-Box System

Choose the minimum system size using the largest load you want to power. If you have several large loads, add them together to determine the total watts required. Choose a SunBox with enough power output to power all the loads together. Consider the amount of power you need during the day and the amount you need at night, since some Sun-Boxes have extra daytime capacity (like the 6 Box System).

Examples of Use:

 The Sun-Box provides power in ANY location where there is SUN!  So you can now have power for a myriad of applications, such as:

  • Cabins
  • RV's
  • Remote locations, pump stations, electric gates, etc
  • Swimming pools
  • Sheds or shops (out in the yard, away from the house)
  • Camping
  • Outdoor trade shows
  • Fairs
  • Small house
  • Remote training or field study locations
  • Emergency preparedness (can take with you on short notice)
  • Remote monitoring stations (weather stations)
  • Power for remote signs

Compared to gas generator:

The Sun-Box™ is QUIET.  You can use it anytime - day or night.

There are no ongoing costs (or mess!) for fuel or engine maintenance.

There is no reliance on supply-chain for fuel purchase. For example, during an emergency if fuel is no longer available. All you need to power the Sun-Box is the Sun!

Tax Credits

The Sun-Box qualifies for the 30% federal tax credit.  State tax credits may also be available, check the DSIRE website:

http://www.dsireusa.org/

Expandability

The Sun-Box™ is modular so that you can easily expand the system to include additional boxes if you need more power.  It is a "plug and play" system that only requires you to connect the boxes to increase the capacity. 

There is an on-board computer that recognizes new boxes as they are plugged-in, and reconfigures the system to accommodate the new addition(s).

WIFI

The on-board computer is equipped with WIFI that connects to your internet. This allows you to see your daily solar production data, along with battery charge and power usage.  This info is also available on your phone.

Monitoring

The control system on the computer monitors all of the critical system functions to assure that everything is operating properly.  If there are any problems with the system, it will be reported (in real time) to the web interface.

The entire system is monitored and managed by the control system so that you don't have to worry about it.  This assures that it will always be fully functional and ready to serve your power needs.

Battery Health

Of greatest importance in autonomous solar power systems are the batteries.  The batteries are the "heart" of the system. The main cause of system failure is typically due to some problem with the batteries.  Once the batteries are dead, the whole system is no longer functional!

The Sun-Box control system monitors battery health and controls the conditions that affect (and potentially degrade) the battery health.

Temperature

For example, extreme heat and cold can degrade and even destroy the batteries.  The Sun-Box has multiple, redundant heaters and cooling fans to control the temperature inside the insulated battery enclosure. This assures that the temperature is within the healthy range for the batteries.  The redundant fans and heaters assure that if one fan fails, the other fans are still operational.  Temperature sensors within the enclosure enable this monitoring and control feature.

Battery Charge

Another main cause of failure in batteries is when the demand for power is beyond the capacity of the batteries.  Even in a system that is operating properly (large enough batteries to handle the load), if the batteries are drained too low (like leaving your car lights on) it can kill the battery.

The Sun-Box EMS (Energy Management System) proactively manages the battery charge, and prevents this draining to occur when the charge is low.

Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFe PO4)

The batteries are Lithium Iron Phosphate - the most robust battery available today.  Unlike other Lithium batteries, the LiFe PO4 is capable of several thousands of cycles (vs. hundreds of cycles for all other battery types).  These batteries will last 10+ years (vs. 3-5 years life for other batteries)

Another advantage of LiFe batteries is that they weigh less.  The total weight of the Sun-Box is less than 40 lbs!

The Sun-Box™ Team:

 

 

 

 

Risks and challenges

Once our project is funded, the main challenges will be in supply chain - getting all of the components in a timely manner. To address this challenge we have been proactive in our selection of multiple suppliers for all of the key components. We currently have at least 3 sources for each critical part in the system.

Also, we have over 60 years of combined experience in engineering, design, manufacturing, and getting the product to market. See our bios for more info!

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    THANK YOU !

    By contributing only $1 you will be part of our Sun-Box community! You will receive all of our updates, and are invited to contribute to the ongoing development and refinement of our product.

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    Sun-Box Keychain

    Key chain - indicate choice of either wood or metallic look plastic.

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    Solar Powered Flashlight

    It's always great to have a flashlight for emergencies - and this one is charged by the SUN!!

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    Sun-Box T-Shirt!

    The SUN actually charges the paint on the logo of this T-Shirt and it GLOWS at night!!

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    One Box (Early Bird Special)

    Will Retail for $850

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    2 Box System (Early Bird Special)

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    4 Box System (Early Bird Special)

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    6 Box System (Early Bird Special)

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    10 Box System (Early Bird Special)

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Funding period

- (30 days)