Based on its recent research on the solar inverter market, Frost & Sullivan has presented CyboEnergy with the 2013 Global Frost & Sullivan Award for Product Differentiation Excellence. CyboEnergy's inverter, CyboInverter, combines a central inverter with a micro inverter, thereby addresseing the shortcomings of existing inverter types.

Solar panels and inverters are the two most critical components in a solar power system as they work together to collect solar energy and convert it into usable electricity. In order to be successful in the competitive market, it is crucial for inverter manufacturers to differentiate themselves by providing innovative solutions that enhance the functionality and provide monetary benefits to the end users. The global solar inverter market in 2012 was worth $7.5 billion and is expected to grow at a compounded annual growth rate of 16% to reach $14.7 billion by the end of 2017.

When compared to central inverters, the inputs to a CyboInverter are low-voltage DC and the output from the CyboInverter is the standard 240V AC. As there is no high-voltage or high-current DC in the system, it is much safer for the installer, user, and the property. This product also helps bring down the installation costs by eliminating the need for detailed solar panel alignment design and DC wiring to the DC junction box. In addition, the CyboInverter performs maximum power point tracking (MPPT) on a panel level, enabling an increase in energy harvest and, ultimately, lower energy costs.

When compared with micro inverters, the CyboInverter stands out for allowing the use of a single inverter for multiple panels, whereas a micro inverter has to be attached to each individual panel.

"Another key differentiating feature is that CyboInverters are scalable and can be used for large-scale projects," said Frost & Sullivan Industry Analyst Gautham Gnanajothi. "It has multiple input channels to connect to several solar panels so that the inverter's per watt cost can be reduced further."

Each 4-channel CyboInverter can connect to four solar panels using four pairs of MC-4 connectors and generate up to 960W AC power. Each CyboInverter's input channel has its own control and MPPT mechanism based on CyboSoft's (CyboEnergy's parent company) Model-Free Adaptive (MFA) control technology to optimize power production and eliminate the problem of partial shading.

The CyboInverter can generate more power every day during sunrise, sunset and partial shading. Its patent-pending design features a 'moonlight mode', through which it can generate power as low as 5W at low irradiances.  A number of CyboInverters can daisy-chain with standard AC power cables and connectors. Frost & Sullivan notes that the CyboInverter also does away with the time-consuming solar panel alignment, and complex DC cable and/or AC cable installations. It can be easily mounted on the back rail of a solar panel outside or hung on a wall inside.

"Furthermore, the design of CyboInverters enables it to work efficiently with minimum circuit components," noted Gautham Gnanajothi. "Frost & Sullivan analysis confirms that this makes CyboInverters highly cost-effective and greatly augments its profile as a solar inverter that provides higher customer value than a micro inverter."

CyboInverters offer grid-flexibility with both grid-tie and off-grid CyboInverters in the same product family. For instance, the CI-Mini-1000A is a grid-interactive mini-inverter that produces 240V, 60Hz and up to 960W AC power to be sent to the grid. The CI-Mini-1000T is an off-grid mini-inverter that generates 230V, 50Hz and up to 960W AC to power AC loads such as fans, lights, TVs, computers, mobile phone chargers, food processors, vacuum cleaners, microwave ovens, battery chargers and small appliances. Providing customized solutions to end-users based on world AC power standards is one of CyboEnergy's key strategies. CyboEnergy has released 10 off-grid CyboInverters based on specific electrical standards to serve the global microgrid market.

Each year, Frost & Sullivan presents this award to the company that has developed a product with unique features/functionality as well as high quality for customers with complex needs. The award lauds the degree of the products customization and the fit for evolving market trends, which ultimately results in a strong brand perception of the product as being unique.

Frost & Sullivan's Best Practices Awards recognize companies in a variety of regional and global markets for demonstrating outstanding achievement and superior performance in areas such as leadership, technological innovation, customer service, and strategic product development. Industry analysts compare market participants and measure performance through in-depth interviews, analysis, and extensive secondary research in order to identify best practices in the industry.