Solar power to go

Ready Solar makes "Solar in a Box" to make the installation process less expensive and easier on home builders and owners.

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.--Buying a solar panel should be like purchasing a refrigerator or hot tub, according to ReadySolar.

It should be a home product that comes ready to install in one box with simplified instructions so nearly anyone can install it. Hence the company's so-called "Solar in a Box" product it's pitching here at Launch: Silicon Valley.

Ready

ReadySolar makes a modular, prefabricated solar-panel box. The aim is to bring down the cost of solar installation and components, according to Meredith McClintock, the company's founder and president. The company does that by building a proprietary chassis in which any kind of solar panel can go.

The Solar in a Box system will be sold directly to builders and can be installed by crane in several hours with less than a dozen parts. The company says the advantage will be that builders won't need a subcontractor specifically to install solar panels.

The typical solar system can cost between $9 and $11 per watt of power, or $30,000 and $60,000 for a new home. ReadySolar says it can bring the cost down to between $4.50 and $5.50 per watt.

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About the author

Erica Ogg is a CNET News reporter who covers Apple, HP, Dell, and other PC makers, as well as the consumer electronics industry. She's also one of the hosts of CNET News' Daily Podcast. In her non-work life, she's a history geek, a loyal Dodgers fan, and a mac-and-cheese connoisseur. E-mail Erica.

 

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