The Duck Curve and Solar Explained

solar duck curve graph
26th September 2023

Solar power is without doubt the most mainstream way to self generate power for the majority of us. Embraced by millions of homes and businesses worldwide, it harnesses the power of the sun. 

With so many solar panels generating energy, it has caused some challenges for the grid. We are generating more energy than the grid can cope with throughout the day. Daytime energy demand is lower than early evening demand and this can cause issues. Moreover, modern lifestyles mean we consume so much more power than we did, even as recently as 10 years ago.

What Is The Solar Duck Curve? 

Ok, the Solar duck sounds a little strange, we’ll admit. However, it refers to a curve caused by the instability and fluctuations in grid power demand and supply. The term ‘Solar Duck’ was coined back in 2012 in California and is a graphic representation to show the curve, year-on-year.

The solar duck represents the timeline that our demands and draw on energy peak and fall throughout a typical 6am to 9pm day. We start with steady demand (think of a duck’s tail). The demand falls rapidly mid-morning as the sun begins to shine and excess power is exported back to the grid. Then, later in the afternoon, as our demand begins to rise, the curve does too. Leading to a huge demand for power by later afternoon and early evening. As we all arrive home from work, turn heating, lighting on. Start cooking, homework, stream TV etc. Our increasingly power driven needs to cause a massive spike (top of a duck’s head) that only begins to fall again much later in the evening.

Why Can The Duck Curve Be A Problem? 

Power grid and mains infrastructures are likely decades old and simply struggle to cope with the large influx of energy when they don’t need it. Ie, through the day. Or the other side of the coin. A huge draw on energy later in the day at peak time when demand can outstrip supply is just as big of a problem.

The lowest and highest part of the ‘duck curve’ graphic is the most challenging as the grid attempts to cope with accelerating extremes of high and low demand for energy. These challenges can lead to potential for blackouts if the grid infrastructure fails to cope.

Is Solar The Answer?

Yes, alongside other renewable methods, Solar is still a very easy way to self generate energy. However, consider adding smart battery storage alongside your Solar PV. This helps stop the ‘solar duck’ curve by utilising the excess daytime solar to power devices and appliances. Moreover, the battery stores additional excess solar so that your demand at peak time is negligible as you’ll be using stored energy. Less reliance on the grid, but in reality, by using your excess solar, it is helping the grid better negotiate the peaks and troughs of the influx they struggle to deal with. Huge savings for you and much less chance of those badly timed power outages we all dread.

Whilst the term ‘Solar duck’ curve may sound a little odd, it is a very real result of modern day energy usage.  

Solar Solutions To The Duck Curve

Soltaro are experts in energy management products and devices. Our innovative software ensures that you use your energy in the most efficient way to lower your energy costs. 

AIO2 Battery Storage

Our combined ESS (Energy Storage Solution) Battery is the perfect choice to store excess solar. By storing power that would usually go straight back to the grid, you store it and use it to power your home when you aren’t generating solar. Simple, expandable and affordable.

AIO3 Battery Storage

Like our AIO2, the AIO3 is a combined ESS. However, it is much larger in scale and more suitable for three phase properties such as much larger homes or businesses. Like all of our AIO range, it uses our Qendercore software for even smarter usage.

EV Charger

The Soltaro EV charger is the easy way to charge your car. Using excess solar or grid power, it’s the ultimate in flexible ways to make running our Electric Vehicle even greener. And of course, it’s designed to work seamlessly with the rest of the Soltaro range.

Air Conditioning 

The Soltaro AC unit is a perfect way to switch from fossil fuels and move toward an all electric home. Providing hot or cold air to maintain the perfect temperature within your home. As a smart AC unit, it can use excess solar to power your home. Using the app, you can set behaviours to get the perfect temperature every time you arrive home. 

Contact Soltaro  

Drop us a line at [email protected] or use our contact form. We’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Get in touch


+61 1300 276 582

UK & Europe

+44 1909 807 577

New Zealand


If you'd like to find out more about the AIO2 or any of our other products please complete your contact details using the steps below and we'd be happy to answer questions you have.

Aftercare & Support

Don't forget to register your new Soltaro purchase to validate and extend your warranty.

Register Products

Clich here to raise a support ticket and in most cases we can fix the problem without the need to visit your home.

Report a Technical Issue

All of our documentation including terms & conditions, warranty and techncal mannuals can be found here.