Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility Marion Perrin, scientific manager of Oscaro Power: “generating one’s own energy is a major social revolution” | Open Energies

Marion Perrin, scientific manager of Oscaro Power: “generating one’s own energy is a major social revolution”

After working at the National Institute of Solar Energy, a branch of the CEA (atomic and alternative energy commission), Marion Perrin is now Oscaro Power’s scientific manager. And her ambition? To empower individuals with self-sufficiency in energy. How does that work? By means of easy-to-install photovoltaic systems that let them produce and manage their own energy supply. 

Here’s what Marion has to say: 


Tell us about Oscaro Power 

Marion Perrin: Oscaro Power is the online provider of brand photovoltaic systems for home owners. We have focused our business on user-installable, home-consumption photovoltaic systems. In layman’s terms, we sell solar electric panels for generating a home’s own electricity and – better still – which can easily be installed by users themselves! Our mission involves offering consumers all necessary assistance to make their projects a success. That means answering their questions – and there are a lot of them – while their ideas take shape: How many panels do I need? What requirements shall they cover? What type of system and what equipment? How do we even go about it? We therefore offer tutorials and and provide a responsive customer relations centre. We intend to break the glass ceiling of 35,000–50,000 home-use systems installed every year. Subsidy-based schemes are running out of steam. Ours is a non-subsidized model in which home owners themselves install their systems. 


“Digitalization has made controlling your home a reality” 


What’s your vision for the sector? 

Marion Perrin : Solar energy is witnessing exponential development and growth, and we’re only just scratching the surface! Ambitious targets for renewables in the energy mix cannot be met without major consumer involvement. That’s self-evident. But consumers have a hard time feeling involved when the subject is something abstract, something they can’t visualize. Producing one’s own consumption is however a very concrete thing, a hands-on entry to the world of energy. By becoming producers as well as consumers, individuals see for themselves the necessity of balancing supply with demand and can better understand how this applies at grid level. Their production and consequently their benefit cannot be maximized unless they consume as they produce. That’s why I think own-use generation provides an excellent grounding in this real societal revolution. 


Are smart energy systems an answer to the issues? 

Marion Perrin: Completely! Digitalization is a game-changer when it comes to managing home-produced electricity. Real-time production and consumption data lets us make the most of our surpluses. We first decide on the best moments for starting the washing machine or recharging the electric car. Then for supervising these production and consumption needs, digital provides essential information. We can then move on to the control part for the operation of our on-off consumption strategies: should I prioritize running the dish washer or charging the car? bearing in mind I’m off to see my grandmother tomorrow. Or would it be better to run the washing machine? And what about my heat pump? In short, the right order must be given at the right time in line with pre-defined priorities set by the consumer with one eye on their energy bills. 


“Open Energies: the crossover between abstract and concrete” 


Because the money aspect is also important, right? 

Marion Perrin: Not just important but primary. If we look at a high-quality 5kWp system, the outlay including VAT will be roughly 4,500 euros. Such a system can cover up to half a yearly usage of 10,000kWh, which would be billed at around 1,500 euros without own-use production. That’s no mean saving! 


So was there a real need for an event like this dedicated to energy digitalization?  

Marion Perrin: Yes. Until now there hasn’t been a trade show offering a clear view of energy digitalization. Take the energy roaming concept for example: it’s hard to conceptualize and few people know what to make of it! Yet nowadays we need to be able to explain roaming electrons. You probably think it’s mission impossible! (laughs) But with Open Energies, these abstract notions are made concrete by showing concrete applications and the savings they can make, by enabling discussions with manufacturers. It’s a great way of reassuring people and accelerating the uptake of these new technologies and their uses!