ADI goes solar with SunWize

Saturday, September 1, 2007

MELVILLE, N.Y.--In order to offer customers a tool for security solutions in remote locations or with difficult power obstacles, ADI announced in late July it will carry solar power solutions from SunWize Technologies, a designer and manufacturer of solar energy systems that earlier this year announced a partnership with AvaLAN Wireless and Mobotix cameras (search "SunWize" at
"We were getting calls from our systems group to carry this type of product," said Scott Sturgess, director of product marketing for intrusion and fire products at ADI. "Maybe they're doing a project in the desert and wondering, 'How am I going to power the cameras.' We were struggling with how to solve this for our customers, and it was almost fate that I got a call from Bruce Wilson at SunWize."
Wilson is SunWize's eastern United States sales manager and has been working in the solar industry for 25 years. He said the demand for alternative power sources has increased rapidly since Sept. 11, 2001. "Our dealing with security systems prior to 9/11 was pretty much non-existent," he said. "Then everybody wanted to put a camera at the back gate, and because of that, issues of power consumption arose."
The SunWize products will be sold through ADI's Louisville, Ky., systems group and Sturgess noted that every SunWize system is custom developed for each specific solution. This is because "there's definitely nothing standard" about solar systems, said Wilson. "From application to application they're customized based on three factors: the location, whether it's Florida or New York makes a big difference in how much sun there is; then the operating voltage, or the voltages of the equipment that's going to be drawing power; then the duty cycle: How many hours a day will the system be in use?"
Wilson emphasized that the more power that's needed, the more expensive the solar solution will be.
Sturgess thought the most likely application would be where power is otherwise unavailable or difficult to get, "But maybe you have to rip up a street to get power to the solution," and it would be more cost effective to go with solar even if you were right next to a power station. For the end users, "over time, it pays for itself," Sturgess said.
Both Wilson and Sturgess speculated that the solar systems might have an application in residential settings where the customer has already invested in home automation.
"The initial reaction from dealers is very exciting," Sturgess said. "A lot of dealers want to know about [SunWize], they want quotes and I'm seeing the systems group working daily on quotes for systems using the products."