Hybrid Power Systems
In contrast with off-grid power systems, hybrid systems add off-grid capabilities to already grid-connected properties. Since hybrid systems don't have to offset the grid entirely, sizing is more customizable (typically less than an off-grid system) and they don't require a backup generator.
Hybrid systems include batteries and solar power, making them able to isolate from the grid, form a "mini-grid", and be self-powered. It is optional to incorporate a standby generator for additional backup power, if desired.
Hybrid systems are generally configured in one of two ways:
To backup essential loads like refrigeration, lighting, and most 120V appliances and outlets, a partial-house backup configuration separates these loads from larger loads, requiring less battery power for operation.
To backup a whole house, including larger 240V appliances like water heaters, air-conditioning, and well pumps, the main electric panel can be supported by additional battery capacity.
In either configuration, the duration of backup power depends on the users, load management, capacity of the solar array, and the availability of sunlight.