My Journey to Green Energy: A Balcony Power Plant in Berlin




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Enjoy this personal submission from our in-house solar enthusiast, Lenny.

My Journey to Green Energy: A Balcony Power Plant in Berlin

When I first heard about balcony solar panels, I was immediately fascinated. The idea of generating my own electricity on my balcony in Berlin seemed like a small, modern miracle. I already envisioned myself as part of a green revolution right in the heart of the big city. Thus began my personal journey towards a more sustainable lifestyle — with a balcony solar panel as my faithful companion.‍

Berlin, with its surprisingly abundant sunshine, seemed to me the perfect place for this endeavour. I remembered how I had enjoyed the warm, sunny days from spring to late autumn without ever thinking that these sunbeams could be converted into energy. The idea that my small balcony would soon be more than just a spot for coffee and reading excited me. But first, a question came up: Is my balcony even suitable?

The sun shines on it all day long, but is that enough? I read that a south-facing orientation is ideal but my balcony faces west — would a balcony power plant still be worthwhile? After research, it depends on your lifestyle: if you work all day and only need power in the morning when getting up and in the evening when coming home, then east-west is the new south. But if you need power during the day (or have a storage system), a south-facing balcony power plant is advantageous. The decision was quickly made, yet the path to installing my balcony solar panels initially felt like a journey into the unknown.

The idea that my household could be partly supplied by self-generated electricity was both exciting and a little frightening at the same time. Installing a bi-directional meter by the network operator was a significant step that made the project tangible. It felt as though I was officially becoming part of a larger electrical grid, a community of power producers.

The First Harvest: Power from Sunlight

When the balcony power plant was finally mounted and caught the first rays of sunlight, it was a moment of pure joy. Seeing how the electronics in my home, from the television, to lamps, to the refrigerator, were powered by energy that was just moments ago part of a warm sunny day felt almost magical. I could track the energy produced via the Ostrom App on my smartphone in pretty much real-time, adding a new dimension of interactivity to the whole experience. Monitoring quickly became one of my favorite activities. It was fascinating to observe the direct relationship between sunlight and power generation and to learn how I could adjust my consumption for maximum efficiency.

A Green Lifestyle: More Than Just Electricity

My balcony power plant has changed my everyday life in Berlin. It has given me a deeper understanding and greater appreciation for energy and sustainability. The longer hours of sunshine in the city are no longer just pleasant but also useful, and every watt of produced energy feels like a small victory. The awareness of actively participating in the energy transition gives me a sense of satisfaction and pride.

Conclusion: A Personal Energy Revolution

Opting for a balcony power plant was more than just a step towards green energy. It was the beginning of a personal revolution that has opened my eyes to how modern technology and sustainable living can go hand in hand.

My small balcony in Berlin is now not only a retreat but also a powerhouse — in the truest sense of the word. It is a daily adventure and a constant companion on my path to a more conscious handling of our planet's resources. I find myself looking at all the balconies around me and thinking, "What if they all had a balcony power plant?"

Thank you, Lenny! If you are inspired by this article, be sure to check out the Ostrom Store for balcony solar panels and more. Ostrom also works together with top solar partners if you are interested in exploring larger roof panels.