The current module oversupply market dynamic has coincided with efforts to bolster manufacturing outside of China by national governments and manufacturers alike. pv magazine consultant and contributor Götz Fisbheck was a part of discussions regarding made-in-Europe production, to find that protectionist measures are being called for by some.
In a new weekly update for pv magazine, OPIS, a Dow Jones company, provides a quick look at the main price trends in the global PV industry.
In the third week of September, European electricity markets prices fell compared to the previous week. The decline was due to lower demand and a significant increase in wind energy production in several markets, which offset increasing gas and CO2 prices. On September 25, TTF gas futures reached their highest level since early April and on September 18, Brent reached its highest settlement price since November 2022.
Warnings about the need to decentralize Ukraine’s electricity grid, made 10 years before the Russian invasion, fell on deaf ears at the time. In the wake of war, nations across Eastern and Central Europe are alive to the risks embodied in traditional energy networks.
Solar module prices have never fallen so sharply in such a short period of time. One reason for this is the “PV module glut” in warehouses in Europe, according to pvXchange’s Martin Schachinger.
Plummeting module prices are weighing on European manufacturers, but the impact on wholesalers is differently, as warehouse conditions are showing signs of improvement.
Jaebin Choe, renewables permitting team researcher at environmental advocacy organization Solutions for our Climate (SFOC), told pv magazine that some South Korean regional governments have been forced to pass exceptional clauses to allow the construction of solar PV arrays in their municipalities despite federal regulation. The association claims this represents the ‘biggest bottleneck’ in the country’s solar pursual.
As the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies underlines the delays in hydrogen storage investments, a group of researchers have developed a cost-effective material to absorb hydrogen at non-cryogenic temperatures, which they consider optimal for fuel cell storage systems.
EU Energy Commissioner Kadri Simson, speaking at the European Heat Pump Association’s (EHPA) Heat Pump Forum this week, has reaffirmed the European Union’s commitment to decarbonizing heat.
BAJsolar has finished building a 10 GW solar cell factory in eastern China. It has invested CNY 2.6 billion ($355.75 million) in the new facility.
Tenevo Solar plant is expected have a solar capacity of 238 MW, a wind capacity of 237 MW and a storage capacity of 250 MW-500 MWh, with construction starting this month. Konstantin Nenov, director of Renalfa AD – one of the businesses behind the project – tells pv magazine the plant is emblematic of the Balkan country shifting away from coal and towards the sun.
TotalEnergies has become the sole shareholder of French agrivoltaics specialist Ombrea, in a transaction that builds upon the partnership they started in 2019.
Conall Bolger, CEO of the Irish Solar Energy Association (ISEA), has told pv magazine that while it was ‘good’ news the Irish government favored solar PV projects in the latest renewable auction, less than half of solar PV projects selected in the first tender round of the same program would not ‘reach the finish line.’
Munich-based startup 42watt will expand its fee-based services to simplify building energy efficiency renovations for homeowners and enter new market segments after raising an undisclosed amount of seed funding.
Iberdrola has finished building Spain’s first hybrid wind-solar project, featuring a 74 MW solar plant and a 69 MW wind farm.
We Drive Solar and MyWheels have announced plans to transform the Dutch city of Utrecht into the world’s first municipality with a “neighborhood battery on wheels.” The system will feature 25 Ioniq 5 vehicles equipped with vehicle-to-grid (V2G) tech from Hyundai Motor.
Fraunhofer ISE researchers utilized a new front metallization technique to produce a III-V gallium arsenide solar cell. For mask and plate front metallization, they used a new two-step printing scheme that reportedly allows for the realization of extremely narrow mask openings.
Dragonfly Energy is using lithium hydroxide recovered from recycled batteries to manufacture battery cells, with Aqua Metals leading the way in recycling solutions for materials in the supply chains for energy storage and electric vehicles.
EnergyAustralia’s plans to install a 500 MW/2,000 MWh big battery storage system in the Australian state of New South Wales are gaining momentum, as the Hong Kong-owned generator has secured approval to conduct site investigation works.
Solarstone, an Estonian producer of building-integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) solar roofs, has opened a 60 MW manufacturing facility in Viljandi, Estonia, to produce a broader range of design and performance specifications.
Mondragon Assembly says it has won a patent dispute in China, marking its second successful case in the country in relation to its patented continuous string process.
Scientists in India utilized solar geometry to create a novel energy estimation model that reportedly accurately predicts both the front and back irradiance of bifacial PV modules. The model achieved correlation coefficients of 1.04 and 1.40 for the front and rear side, respectively.
Researchers from Germany’s Fraunhofer ISE developed new techniques to reduce silver consumption in tandem perovskite silicon solar cells and heterojunction silicon PV devices. The new processes relate to cell metallization and module interconnection.
SolarWatt has started production of TOPCon modules, with plans to manufacture both glass-glass and glass-backsheet versions. It says it aims to make its first shipments in January 2024.
Researchers in Iran have designed a new light trapping (LT) structure for perovskite solar cells that reportedly achieves optimal light absorption without impacting the electrical properties of the cells. The key element of the device is an anti-reflector layer based on silicon dioxide (SiO2) that improves light harvesting and charge extraction performance.
Hydrostor has signed a deal with miner Perilya to build a 200 MW/1,600 MWh advanced compressed air energy storage facility in a disused mine cavity in New South Wales, Australia.
As the energy storage trend unfolds, stories litter the media landscape about lithium-ion batteries catching fire, and even exploding. This is a valid concern, as the time for consumers to understand a basic truth about lithium-ion batteries is long past due.
Wood Mackenzie says that US developers installed 1.7 GW/5.6 GWh of new storage capacity in the second quarter of 2023.
Moroccan researchers have investigated the potential energy savings of PV systems integrated with biomaterial-based walls in rural areas. They say that solar-powered earth homes could achieve a levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) of $0.218/kWh.
Solar industry veteran Jigar Shah, the director of the US Department of Energy’s (DoE) Loan Programs Office, says that virtual power plants are the path to success, as solar net metering now faces an uncertain future.
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