Lux Research named eIQ Energy one of its top 10 most innovative companies in the fourth quarter of 2011.
The company was the only one on Lux’s list of innovative businesses working in new technologies that focuses on the solar industry. Silicon Valley, Calif.-based eIQ develops inverters and optimizers that enable solar photovoltaic arrays to perform at their peaks and produce the most energy they can, according to the Lux report.
“They really stood out to me for a couple reasons,” said Lux analyst and one of the report authors Matt Feinstein. “A lot of companies are scaling down.”
He said that most of the companies working in this sector of the solar industry are trying to make their products smaller and design them to be more compact. But eIQ isn’t doing that.
“They’re one of the few DC/DC optimizer companies staying with stand-alone hardware,” Feinstein said.
And they’re targeting larger-scale commercial solar projects with their product, which Feinstein said he believes is where the most market potential is.
“They’re targeting the right spot because they’re not scaling down,” he said.
Like many companies in the downstream solar market, eIQ is concentrating on a parallel structure for its system.
“Solar designers can architect a system in parallel rather than in a series,” eIQ CEO Oliver Jensen said in a marketing video, “saving in upfront costs, simplifying in installation and improving the overall economics of the system.”
Working with parallel structures, enables inverters to convert a much larger amount of the energy produced by solar panels into useable power.
“At the end of the day, they can provide more than a 5 percent increase in energy conversion,” Feinstein said.
While other companies are working on similar technologies, they’re not targeting the same market eIQ is, Feinstein said.
“Nobody else is doing this specific thing,” he said. “And the people they’re selling to are going to realize the value in it.”
The company was created in 2007 and has been growing since then, Feinstein said. That was a golden year for solar companies getting off the ground, he said.