Top News

Seven days that shaped the solar world... it's the latest pv magazine weekly news digest.

The pv magazine weekly news digest

Hanwha Q Cells, Enphase Energy, Solarwatt and EDF are among the big names grabbing the headlines in a week where new product launches and new GW-scale tender details were revealed.

Announcement

pv magazine & partners join forces with Hannover Messe

Along with initiative partners Huawei, sonnen, Suntech, S.A.G, innogy and First Solar, pv magazine will be exhibiting as part of the Integrated Energy Plaza at the 2017 Hannover Messe. The Solar Premium exhibition space will herald solar PV’s arrival as a major energy player at the iconic industrial trade show. The booth will consist of a joint exhibition presence with our partners, and will play host to a series of networking events.  Solar Premium will feature as  a part of the Integrated Energy Plaza for the duration of Hannover Messe 2017, which runs from April 24-28.

For more information, visit www.hannovermesse.de

Technology

Fraunhofer ISE and EVG set 31.3% efficiency for silicon multi-junction solar cell

The German research institute and the Austrian semiconductor specialist have achieved a 31.3% efficiency for a silicon-based multi-junction solar cell. The result improves the previous record of 30.2%, which was also set by EVG and Fraunhofer ISE.

Markets & Policy

Afghanistan approves plan to deploy 65 MW of solar

The Afghan government has approved a plan for the deployment of 100 MW of renewable energy capacity. The plan includes 65 MW of solar tendered by the government in 2016.

Installations

Russian JV to build 100 MW solar farm, 300 MW cell fab in India

Investment by a Russian firm in the Indian solar sector sees Miyota Power India – a joint venture between state-controlled JSC Minneftegasstroi and Akis Tech – collaborate with Al Ameen Green Energy on Tamil Nadu PV plans.

Markets & Policy

EIB and Eiffel Investment Group launch €200 million clean energy fund for bridge financing

The European Investment Bank and Eiffel Investment Group have launched a fund devoted to investments in the green economy in France and Europe. The fund will provide bridge financing for, among others, projects in the solar and storage sectors.

Installations

PLB Engineering unit to develop 20 MW in Malaysia

PLB Green Solar — a subsidiary of Penang-based construction group PLB Engineering — has secured approval to build the project from the Malaysian Energy Commission.

Installations

AU Optronics finishes Taiwan’s biggest rooftop PV project

The Taiwanese company completed the 9.87 MW installation — which consists of arrays on top of two of its liquid-crystal display factories — in late December.

Markets & Policy

Iran’s PV market expected to see strong growth over next 12 months

Between 750 MW and 800 MW of renewable energy generation capacity will be installed in Iran in the country’s current calender year. Most of this capacity will come from solar and wind. Meanwhile, the country has reached approximately 22 MW of cumulative installed solar capacity, as of the end of February 2017.

Markets & Policy

Q4 contraction does not dampen record 2016 for Hanwha Q Cells

The South Korean solar company posted record revenues and module shipments last year, increasing 34.8% and 55% respectively year-on-year.

AC Energy acquires renewable energy development platform

The Philippine conglomerate Ayala Corporation’s energy-focused arm AC Energy Holdings Inc. has taken control of Bronzeoak Clean Energy (BCE) and San Carlos Clean Energy (SCCE).

Enetronica reports revenue and profit drop for 2016

The Italian solar developer saw its turnover and profits decline slightly last year. The company acquired Italian solar inverter manufacturer Elettronica Santerno in late 2016.

Sri Lanka to extend loans for rooftop solar systems

The island nation’s Ministry of Power and Renewable Energy is set to leapfrog to the next stage of energy supply by expanding its loan scheme for rooftop solar.

Installations

Featured

Wärtsilä delivers 15 MW hybrid PV plant to Essakane Solar in Burkina Faso

The solar farm will be added and synchronized with an existing oil driven power plant. The hybrid power plant will serve a local gold mine, saving 18,500t CO2 emissions annually.

UAE-based Ocean Holding plans to invest $100 million in solar in Armenia

Armenia’s Ministry of Energy has signed a MoU with UAE-based Ocean Holding for the construction of PV plants with a combined capacity of over 100 MW.

EDF joins consortium building phase III of Dubai’s 1 GW solar plant

The French power utility will join forces with a consortium led by Abu Dhabi-based developer Masdar to build the third 800 MW phase of the largest PV project in the UAE.

New York City passes 100 MW of installed PV

The city is now 10% to its 2030 solar goal, but still lags well behind the rest of New York State in deployment.

Technology

Featured

IHS Markit: Storage and better grid efficiency could save hundreds of billions each year

A new white paper published by analysts at IHS Markit compares the electricity network with other key systems such as transport and data infrastructure. The report concludes that increasing the amount of electricity storage available could create a more flexible, efficient and reliable grid, and save billions of dollars each year.

Solar monitoring company wins $2.1m ARENA grant

Sydney-based solar data start-up Solar Analytics has been awarded $2.1 million in grant funding from the federal government’s Australian Renewable Energy Agency, to fast-track its rooftop PV monitoring technology.

Renewables helped drive 62% drop in new coal power capacity in 2016, finds report

Coal production in freefall, says new report by Greenpeace, Sierra Club and CoalSwarm, which recorded a 62% reduction in new coal power construction starts and a 48% drop in pre-construction activity last year.

Neo Solar Power posts $206.9 million net loss in 2016

The Taiwanese PV cell producer partly attributed the NT$6.3 billion ($206.9 million) loss — down from a NT$139 million net profit in 2015 — to the idling of some of its production capacity in China.

Manufacturing

PV Crystalox posts lower shipments and revenue for 2016, closes UK ingot production

The UK-based polycrystalline wafer manufacturer posted a decrease in shipments and revenue in 2016. Its UK ingot production is expected to be closed this year due to “deteriorated” market conditions.

Veolia opens solar module recycling facility in France

The French environmental services provider has secured a 4-year contract from PV cycle for the treatment of end-of-life photovoltaic modules.

Analysis: 1 GW Konya deal in Turkey could mark beginning of new manufacturing landscape

Götz Fischbeck, CEO of Smart Solar Consulting, discusses some key questions that have arisen from the recent 1 GW Konya solar tender, which was won by a Hanwha Q Cells-Kalyon Enerji joint venture at a price of $0.0699/kWh.

Meyer Burger signs $15m deal for PERC cell tooling upgrade

Existing Asian customer places order for the Swiss firm’s MAiA 2.1 upgrade cell coating platform. Delivery and commissioning expected in second quarter of the year.

Energy Storage

Featured

Trade Show tour at Energy Storage Europe 2017: innovative storage products

Video: Michael Fuhs and Jonathan Gifford, chief editors at pv magazine group, showcase the latest innovations at the Energy Storage Europe 2017 exhibition that are shaping the storage market.

Solarwatt launches modular storage system

Germany’s Solarwatt has launched a fully-modular battery storage system that it claims will be suitable for installations ranging in scale from small residential up to commercial and industrial installations.

Bringing all storage solutions together at Messe Düsseldorf

Video interview: On the second day of the Energy Storage Europe conference and trade show Hans Werner Reinhard, representative of organizer Messe Düsseldorf, gave his view on the future of the event and the energy storage market.

RMI calls for ‘action’ on Africa’s PV minigrid market

Solar-powered minigrids could account for a greater slice of sub-Saharan Africa’s $740 million off-grid market, but progress is still needed throughout the region in terms of policy, financing and commercial services, the Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) says in a new report.

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Press Releases

Panasonic Donates a total of 1,584 solar lanterns to South Africa, Swaziland, and Lesotho

Since 2012, Panasonic Corporation has been working on the 100 Thousand Solar Lanterns Project, a project that aims to donate a total of 100 thousand solar lanterns to the world's non-electrified areas by 2018, which is the centennial of Panasonic's foundation. As part of the effort, the company donated a total of 1,584 solar lanterns for the first time to three nonprofit organizations (NGOs) working in the three countries of the Republic of South Africa, Kingdom of Swaziland, and Kingdom of Lesotho.

Hanwha Q CELLS and Erdgas Südwest transform former waste dump into a 4.4 MW solar power plant

Erdgas Südwest assumes regional responsibility for putting the former waste dump in Malsch municipality of Baden-Wuerttemberg state to ecological use *Hanwha Q CELLS supplies high-performance solar modules for high energy yields and maximum cost-efficiency of the plant *Around 16,000 Q CELLS brand solar modules with Q. ANTUM technology will help save roughly 2,600 tonnes CO2 per year

More women should fill skills gap in growing global renewable energy sector

Energyjobline and Airswift release GETI, the world’s largest global energy sector skills, recruitment, and employment trends report. Renewable energy a rapidly growing field globally.

Huaneng Power International, Inc.: RMB 8.520 billion bet profit attributed to equity holders of the company in 2016

Huaneng Power International, Inc. announced its audited annual operating results for the twelve months ended December 31, 2016 prepared under the International Financial Reporting Standards, in which the Company recorded consolidated operating revenue of RMB113.