Top News

Solar, wind cheapest source of new generation in major economies – report

Solar and/or wind are said to be the cheapest source of new energy generation in all major economies, apart from Japan, finds BloombergNEF. It adds that China’s utility-scale PV market has contracted by over a third this year; and that battery costs are set to drop a further 66% by 2030, driven by EV adoption.
Installations

Finland launches technology neutral RE auction

The Finnish Energy Agency is seeking proposals for annual electricity production totaling 1.4 TWh. Large-scale wind, solar, biomass and wave power projects will be entitled to participate in the auction.
Installations

PV snaps up all capacity in Germany’s second mixed wind-solar auction

The German Federal Network Agency has selected 36 solar PV power projects with a combined capacity of 201 MW in the mixed energy auction, which ended with a final average price of €0.0572/kWh.
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Installations

Algeria issues 150 MW solar tender

Through the tender, the Algerian Government will select IPP solar projects with a capacity range of 10-50 MW. The projects, to be located in the southwestern part of the country, will be developed on a Build-Own-Operate (BOO) basis. Domestic content rule...
Markets & Policy

RE100 report showcases the role for corporate action in energy transition efforts

The RE100 Progress Insights Annual Report 2018, released at the end of last week, portrays the central role corporate policies can play in carbon mitigation efforts.
Markets & Policy

UAE makes another $50m in RE loans available

The seventh round of funding under the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development program takes to US$350 million the amount pumped into clean energy as part of state-run energy transition strategies in the developing world.
Markets & Policy

SolarPower Europe appoints new CEO

Walburga Hemetsberger has led the EU Representation Office of Austrian energy company Verbund AG for the past 10 years. At the same time, she was also a board member of Hydrogen Europe, in charge of Energy Transition Solutions.
Markets & Policy

Netherlands: PV projects totaling 3.7 GW submitted for autumn round of 2018 SDE+ program

Overall, 5,907 renewable energy projects totaling 5 GW are now under review by the Dutch Ministry of Economy in the second round of the SDE+ program for this year. Solar accounts for 72.8% of the total submitted capacity.

Press Releases

AEG Power Solutions showcases a complete battery energy storage solution in a 1MW micro-grid; announces partnership with Energon

AEG Power Solutions, a global provider of power supply systems and solutions for all types of critical and demanding applications, is demonstrating today a containerized energy storage solution featuring its Convert SC Flex system, during its Battery Energy Storage day, at its facility in Warstein-Belecke, Germany.

SMA exceeds 400 MW solar inverter sales in Vietnam

SMA Solar Technology AG (SMA) has sold more than 400 megawatts of solar inverters across Vietnam in 2018.

Hanwha Q Cells supplies modules to largest hotel solar installation in Stockholm

Hanwha Q Cells GmbH, the German subsidiary of one of the largest solar cell and module manufacturers in the world, Hanwha Q Cells Co. , Ltd, has supplied its award-winning Q.

Chinese delegation on an educational excursion throughout Germany

Rhea Education, in coordination with Solare Datensysteme GmbH (Solar-Log) led an educational excursion through Germany to learn more about varying PV technology and ways to optimize PV systems.

Opinion & Analysis

Featured

Renewables 2.0: Preparing for the new complexity of renewable energy in a post-subsidy world

As the deployment of renewable energy continues to expand around the world, driven by various inputs, such as capital allocation and investment, falling capital costs, competitive LCOE and various policy mechanisms, we are now moving towards a new era for renewable energy. ‘Renewables 2.0’ will have significant, wide-ranging consequences for all market players, as regulators reduce their support and power producers seek new revenue models. In this article, Duncan Ritchie, partner at Apricum – The Cleantech Advisory, will look at the key market developments for renewables, explode the myth of grid parity, highlight the need for flexibility and explain the importance of new financing solutions that are capable of meeting the new complexities brought about by ‘Renewables 2.0’.

Low demand driving consolidation

With the release of second quarter financial results, the rankings of global module shipments in the first half of the year can be confirmed. JinkoSolar shipped 4.8 GW to take first place in this period.

Will Taiwan meet its 20 GW solar goal by 2025?

By 2025, Taiwan aims to reach a cumulative installed solar PV capacity of 20 GW. However, by mid-2018, just 11.2% of this goal had been met. TrendForce analyst, Rhea Tsao, examines the situation and discusses what needs to be done to reach the target.

Degradation control tests for solar PV modules

Module degradation tests are essential not only for effective plant operations, but also to ensure an optimum ROI. However, fixed laboratories, where such tests are usually carried out, involve transportation issues, while it is not always economically feasible to send in mobile laboratories. So how can degradation in these instances be measured? Leonardo Enrique Pérez Abreu, Technical Manager of the Testing & Optimization department at Enertis discusses this issue.

World Overshoot Day comes early this year

World Overshoot Day marks the day the world has used up its annual budget of the resources it could have sustainably consumed. Despite efforts in relevant sectors, the date is creeping forward every year. Twenty years ago, it was in late September.

India’s trade war will have global repercussions

India is currently the second largest market in the world for PV module demand. With China’s domestic demand frozen since the 31/5 notification, the country’s total module demand in 2018 will likely only achieve 32-34 GW. This will allow India, which may surpass 10 GW in annual demand, to reach 13% of global PV demand this year. As a result, the future of India’s trade war has become an influential factor in the global PV industry.

Markets & Policy

Featured

“The government should be doing more – absolutely.”

While Westminster has brought the U.K.’s solar industry almost to a standstill, city councils are fighting like Gallic villages to keep the industry alive. Still, policy support and legislative security from Westminster are direly needed.

The weekend read: Hand in hand

In the world of data centers, two developments have finally joined hands: The rapid increase in required computing power, and the energy transition. This is not only sustainable, but strong business cases are evolving, as was witnessed at this year’s The smarter E Europe in Munich.

Centrica to join London blockchain trial for alternative billing

Using a blockchain-based energy trading system, the company seeks to examine ways to bill customers in the best manner for them and prosumers. In light of the potential removal of export tariffs for small scale solar in the UK, the system could provide alternative remuneration for system owners. The trial will run for six months, with the possibility of extending it to two years.

European Court of Justice censors European Commission approval of UK capacity market

With Theresa May’s government in full scale revolt this week over Brexit, the ECJ’s ruling that the European Commission wrongly failed to find fault with the UK capacity market mechanism four years ago, is likely to have Brexiteers on both sides of parliament frothing at the mouth with indignation.

Equinor takes 9.7% stake in Scatec Solar

The Norwegian oil producer has already partnered with Scatec on large-scale PV projects in Brazil and Argentina. The transaction cost $82.4 million.

Hanwha supplying 100 MW mono PERC modules to China project

Hanwha Q Cells is continuing its collaboration with CGN Power Group. The manufacturer is delivering its Q.Peak-G5 mono-crystalline PERC solar modules to a 150 MW site in China’s Hubei province.

Installations

A route to repowering for inverters

While the replacement of modules in aging PV systems with new, higher efficiency technologies has proved profitable for many projects in Europe, the route to improvements on the inverter side has been less clear. Greentech’s IPG Efficiency Kit, writes Ingo Rehmann, Founder and Managing Partner of greentech, offers a significant yield increase and further benefits for inverters of the Conergy IPG K series.

ACWA receives $320m financing for 300 MW Saudi project

The project, tendered by the Saudi authorities in February, will be built by a new company, which is 70% controlled by the energy giant and 30% by contractor AlGihaz Holding. The plant will sell power to the Saudi Power Procurement Company (SPPC) at SAR 0.08872 (US$0.0236) per kWh.

UK Government: ‘The devil is in the details’ for allowing RE in Capacity Market

A conference held this week in London shed light on the U.K. Government’s timeline for reviewing its Capacity Market and Contracts for Difference schemes, and what the changes could mean for renewable – and specifically solar PV – energy projects.

Argentina launches 400 MW mini renewables auction

Some 350 MW will be divided between wind and solar for projects of 500 kW to 10 MW in scale. The ceiling price for solar and wind has been set at $60/MWh.

Israel supports Angola’s solar ambition with $60m fund

The money will be used, among other things, to finance the construction of a 50 MW solar plant in Benguela province, in the west of the country.

TfL thinks big with aim to install renewables across London estate

The local transport provider wants generation facilities – almost certainly solar – across its 6,000 acres of land and roofs in the capital city, and hopes to break ground on the first sites within a year.

Technology

Featured

Flashing key for bifacial value

As new cell and module concepts move into large-scale production, and efficiencies are pushed ever higher, manufacturers of flash testing equipment must innovate to ensure their tools can provide reliable measurements, and cope with ever expanding production throughput. The expansion of bifacial technology beyond niche applications in particular raises new issues for flash testing standards. pv magazine spoke with several flasher manufacturers to shed light on the latest developments in this segment.

‘Solar cow’ wins Aid Innovation Challenge

Yolk yesterday won the Aid Innovation challenge at the 2018 AidEX in Brussels. Using solar PV in a fun, novel manner, the Korean social enterprise has addressed major social problems in under-developed countries.

Advances made in organic photovoltaic flexibility

Researchers from the Rice University in Houston, Texas, have unveiled new findings in the field of organic photovoltaics (OPV).

IEA World Energy Outlook: Solar PV capacity to overtake all but gas by 2040

Even in its low ball scenario, the International Energy Agency (IEA) imagines that installed solar PV capacity will overtake that of all other forms of energy apart from gas by 2040. Overall, it presents four scenarios in its 2018 World Energy Outlook, which show a changing energy landscape. While it finds that CO2 levels are, perversely, on the rise, and that many energy efforts in all but the most whimsical of its forecasts are far behind those needed to seriously address global warming, it still imagines coal, oil and gas playing a leading role in our energy mix going forward. It also sees “dramatic” transformation in the electricity sector. Long story short: Read something else if you want to take real climate action. We suggest The Drawdown.

German scientists develop new process for stable perovskites

A team of researchers from Germany’s Martin Luther University Halle Wittenberg has developed a new approach to perovskite cell production, which they say could result in better stability and longer lifetimes. The team also made detailed observation of the perovskite’s formation and decay, which could help to inform further research into high performance solar cells.

Singapore launches blockchain-based renewable energy marketplace

Companies keen to offset their carbon emissions will be able to purchase renewable energy certificates at Singapore’s first blockchain-powered marketplace, launched by electricity provider SP Group.

Manufacturing

Featured

Secrets of monocrystalline silicon

Monocrystalline cells and modules are rapidly overtaking multi as the dominant technology in solar markets globally. To understand why, you need to go up the value chain.

Sungrow bags 201 MW solar project in Vietnam

The Chinese-based manufacturer has closed a deal for the supply of its inverter solutions to the large-scale solar project in southern Vietnam. Sungrow says it has deployed a total of 1 GW of solar projects in Vietnam.

IHS revises up outlook for Chinese solar to 40 GW after underestimating demand

Around 34.5 GW of PV was installed in China in the first three quarters – 1.5 GW more than expected by IHS analysts, who have raised their full-year guidance.

German government devotes €1bn to battery cell production

The Federal Ministry of Economics has published further details of possible battery cell production on a gigawatt scale. At the Networking Conference Electromobility 2018 in Berlin this week, Minister Peter Altmaier stressed the urgency of the project, for Germany and Europe to be independent of Asia and the US in storage technology.

Manz reports improved Q3 sales, EBIT

The German PV equipment provider saw sales increase by a third in the first three quarters of 2018. Full year 2018 guidance remains unchanged.

Daqo reports revenue, profit decline for Q3

Despite a considerable increase in polysilicon sales, the Chinese manufacturer saw its turnover decline 7.5% year-on-year in the latest quarter.

Energy Storage

Featured

Whole system thinking

Sector coupling is rapidly becoming a reality, writes Andy Bradley, Director of Business Development at Delta Energy & Environment, meaning that whole system thinking – cross vector as well as cross sector – is becoming ever more important. Energy storage has a vital role to play in enabling this more interconnected and dynamic energy system.

Spain’s Endesa to deploy 4 MW / 1.7 MWh battery in Melilla

The battery will be made by assembling 78 second life battery packs from Nissan’s electric Leaf vehicles. The project is expected to help resolve imbalances in the electrical system of the autonomous city and improve quality of supply.

Boom in electromobility unlikely to cause lithium shortage

The French Environment & Energy Management Agency (Ademe) has published a report in which analyzes the dynamics of lithium supply and demand in different scenarios of global electrification by 2050. The agency experts are convinced that only with a 75% penetration of electric vehicles there is the real risk of a marked decrease in the safety margin of lithium supply.

Edison connects large-scale storage system at PV plant in southern Italy

The Italian power provider has implemented its first pilot storage projects linked to solar. The system can provide grid services such as primary and secondary frequency regulation and tertiary and voltage regulation.

Czech Republic may exclude PV from future renewables auctions

Once a leading European PV market, the Czech Republic may resume development of large-scale renewables from 2021. Only wind, hydro and biomass projects, however, will be eligible, under a proposal from the Ministry of Industry and Trade. Only rooftop solar, of up to 1 MW, would be backed by a ‘feed-in premium’ scheme.

PV to take lion’s share of $120 billion annual investment

The impressive growth is unlikely to replace coal-fired power generation as it will only be sufficient to cover the predicted increase in demand for electricity. The electrification of heating, manufacturing and transportation offer room for further development.

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