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These 3 US states have the most small-scale solar PV

Of the 4.5 GW of small-scale solar capacity added in the United States in 2020, California accounted for 31%. New Jersey, New York, and Massachusetts are leaders for small-scale solar capacity despite having less favorable solar resources.
Manufacturing

Silver accounts for 10% of PV module costs

The share of silver in the total cost of PV modules has increased by around 5% in recent months, according to US analyst Matthew Watson. He told pv magazine that silver prices are set to rise, adding that the metal will eventually account for an e...
Hydrogen

Australian mining company moves ahead with 1 GW green hydrogen project

Province Resources is pushing ahead quickly with its plan to develop a 1 GW hybrid solar PV and wind farm in Western Australia as part of a proposal to produce renewable hydrogen for domestic and foreign markets.
Announcements

pv magazine Annual Award 2021: open for entries

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Entries are currently being accepted for the awards across six categories: Modules, Inverters, Balance of System (BoS), Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS), Sustainability, and Manufacturing. Enter free today to go in the running to be a 2021 winner!

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A good pairing – Inverter and storage compatibility in a changing European residential market

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Retos y oportunidades de la integración de módulos de alta potencia en proyectos a gran escala con sistemas de seguimiento

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Installations

Colombia imposes 10% renewables quota on power distributors

The obligation will be applied annually from 2022. Colombian power utilities will have to procure the clean energy concerned under long-term contracts lasting at least a decade.
Markets & Policy

Turkish government unveils details of upcoming 1 GW PV tender

The Turkish government has revealed the tender's five-day schedule between March 8-12. It also specified how much capacity each of the 36 cities reached by the procurement exercise will have.
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Markets & Policy

Inverted blade-coated perovskite cell with 23.2% efficiency

A US research team has improved the efficiency of a blade-coated perovskite cell with a p-i-n structure by reducing iodine-induced charge traps in the films. They used the cells to fabricate a mini module with an efficiency of 18.2%.
Installations

New power electronic device to manage surplus solar power

The device was developed by an international consortium through the EU-funded project Renewable penetration levered by Efficient Low Voltage Distribution grids (RESOLVD). The power electronic technology is claimed to be able to combine different storage ...
Manufacturing

Avancis claims 19.64% efficiency for CIGS module

The German manufacturer said the result was confirmed by the US National Renewable Energy Laboratory. The achieved efficiency is claimed to be a world record for a CIGS panel with an integrated series connection of 30x30 cm.

Press Releases

Sungrow Launches the Latest 75 kW String Inverter for Brazilian DG Market

Sungrow, the global leading inverter solution supplier for renewables, rolled out the Company's latest commercial string inverter SG75CX for Brazilian micro-generation power plants, showcasing the Company's continued commitment to comply with the regional power demand and decarbonize the local economy.

FIMER strengthens its management structure with trio of senior appointments

As it focuses on future growth, FIMER, the world's fourth largest manufacturer of photovoltaic inverters and leader in electric mobility solutions, strengthens its management team with the appointment of Roberto Basile as chief marketing officer, Florian Chan as managing director of its Residential business line and Maren Schmidt De Angelis as managing director of its Utility business line.

Hunt Perovskite Technologies Continues to Expand Patent Portfolio

Hunt Perovskite Technologies (HPT) today announced that the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has granted HPT two additional patents related to its ongoing work in the development of printed metal halide perovskite photovoltaic (PV) devices.

Goodweek 2021 – Global PV Industry Summit

Wood Mackenzie, IHS Markit and BloombergNEF share their expectations for 2021

Opinion & Analysis

Featured

Creating an alternative PV supply chain in the US is no cakewalk

The US Solar Energy Industry Association in late 2020 launched a campaign against forced labor and said it was “strongly encouraging” member companies to adjust their supply chains by June. Here is what will likely happen.

New EU battery rules support a sustainable energy industry

On Dec. 10, European Internal Market and Environment Commissioners Thierry Breton and Virginijus Sinkevičius, in conjunction with Vice President Maroš Šefčovič, announced a keenly anticipated piece of legislation: the commission’s proposal for modernized EU battery rules. Pia Alina Lange – head of communications for Recharge, the European battery industry association – says that while there are potential pitfalls with the new regulation, it could pave the way to sustainable industry development.

Residential storage growth continues despite Covid-19 headwinds

The global residential energy storage market continued to grow in 2020, writes IHS Markit Analyst Michael Longson. Many suppliers were looking to build upon a strong first quarter when Covid-19 hit in March 2020 and slowed the market significantly. However, as a result of several funding packages being introduced and the gradual easing of local restrictions, shipments continued to grow throughout the second and third quarters, enabling strong year-on-year growth for the sector in 2020.

Renewables targets falling by the wayside, according to African solar survey

An overview of the state of solar across the continent by trade body the Africa Solar Industry Association has highlighted a patchy policy landscape where clean power ambitions are often not followed through.

Global PV installations to surpass 150 GW in 2021

Despite pandemic-induced impacts, the PV market was bigger than expected last year. In particular, an installation rush in Vietnam and China took place in December and pushed global demand upward. PV InfoLink estimates that global module demand in 2020 reached 140 GW. Analyst Mars Chang delves into the numbers.

Renewable energy project financing in Chile analyzed

Taking a renewable energy project into its operational phase calls for several workstreams to be synchronized. The one that perhaps jumps out the most is permitting processes: correctly navigating the intricate and time-sensitive steps for licenses and permits. Regardless, each workstream calls for a different set of skills, and because of interlinked chicken-or-egg causality, it is difficult to say which single element is most important in a project’s development. However, there is an unsung element of the financial closing which has as much, if not more, impact on a project’s profitability than the cost of debt does: the underlying terms and conditions.

Covid-19

Featured

Solar glassmaker posts another set of bumper figures

Xinyi has accelerated plans to add more furnaces this year and predicts the rebound in solar demand being driven, in part, by the desire of nations for a green recovery from Covid-19 will continue to keep supply tight.

Photon Energy update after ‘difficult’ quarter

The Amsterdam-based, Australia and central Europe-facing developer saw sales slump thanks to Covid-19 last year but has touted a growing operational project portfolio.

Austrian solar industry wants Covid-recovery funds spent on renewables-friendly grid

The national PV body in the country wants €1 billion from the EU’s recovery and resilience fund to be allocated to upgrading the electricity network to host more solar power generation capacity.

Renewables compete with coal and shale oil as Jordan pursues energy independence

The kingdom has had a ban on new large scale clean energy projects since January 2019 as Covid-19 exacerbated a situation in which generation capacity already outstripped supply. Lifting that embargo, and re-starting renewables auctions would be a step in the right direction, according to IRENA.

Storage and PAYG critical to deployment of African off-grid renewables

The former need not necessarily relate to conventional lithium-ion batteries, however, as a recent webinar staged by Solarpower Europe and EU body GET.invest discovered.

EU reveals how much each member state can expect from Covid-recovery pot

The European Parliament and Council of Ministers continued to tidy up the details of the bloc’s Covid-recovery package today by publishing the rules of how the money will be disbursed.

Markets & Policy

Featured

What Asia needs to turn away from coal

Given the rapid decrease of the solar electricity cost, pv magazine explores the drivers and obstacles behind switching off coal and embracing photovoltaics and other renewable energy technology in Asia. The good news: things are moving in the right direction.

Swiss PV market grew 30% in 2020

According to Switzerland-based trade body Swissolar, the country saw the deployment of over 430 MW of new solar PV systems last year.

Solar modules prices rose by up to 15% in China, Jinko’s vice president says

According to JinkoSolar vice president Dany Qian, PV panel prices rose significantly since the second quarter of last year due to an increasing shortage of polysilicon, glass, silver, and module frames. She also stated that rushing demand cannot stop prices from rising for at least the next six months or longer, until sufficient capacity ramps up.

Brazil may host $5.4bn green hydrogen plant

The facility is expected to be located in the state of Ceará and to be powered by around 3.6 GW of wind and solar facilities located in the region. The project developer is Australia-based Enegix Energy.

Modular lift system for solar panels

Altrex, a scaffolding and ladder producer in the Netherlands, has developed a new modular lift solution for solar panels. The system can raise one solar panel at a time and can be operated by a single installer using nothing other than a cordless drill, the company claims.

Laser-based P3 scribing for perovskite mini modules with 19% efficiency

German scientists have improved the scribing method to interconnect perovskite PV cells, in order to then upscale them into mini PV modules. They established suitable laser fluence ranges for nanosecond and picosecond lasers and found that the former results in higher efficiency levels.

Installations

Featured

The future is female among Egyptian engineers

How do you achieve gender equality among shift-working engineers in a remote location in North Africa? With a clear vision and concrete measures, according to Scatec’s operations and maintenance (O&M) team in Egypt, which has a 30% share of female engineers.

Floating PV plant at California water treatment facility

A 4.8 MW floating PV installation in California has surpassed an array in the metro New York area to become one of the largest floating solar projects in the United States.

New parameters to improve prediction models for snow cover

Canadian scientists have developed a way to improve the short-term models used to forecast the impact of snow on PV arrays. The parameters include the warming effect of irradiance on the backs of panels, thermal capacity, and irradiance through snow.

Spanish company plans 1.17 GW hybrid solar-wind complex in Chile

Ibereólica has submitted the project, set to be located in the Antofagasta region, to Chile’s environmental authorities for approval.

When agrivoltaics meet energy communities

Spain’s Tranesol is setting up two energy communities that will be powered by 2.5 MW of agrivoltaics. The two facilities will be located in the Valencian Community, which is at the forefront for supporting projects for solar power sharing.

Vietnam sees 350 MW solar park come online

Chinese inverter maker Sungrow revealed a 350 MW solar facility was energized in Loc Ninh County, Binh Phuoc Province. The project secured a FiT of $0.0709 per kWh.

Technology

Featured

Filling the energy technology, poverty gap

Advanced technology is of little use if it cannot reach those who need it most. Two Indonesian companies – Kopernik, an NGO based in Bali, and Sumba Sustainable Solutions, from the island of Sumba – are trying to bridge the gap between those in need and those with technological solutions. They both focus on the PV electrification of rural areas and brightening Indonesia’s “last mile.”

Slot die coating for 20.83% efficient perovskite thin-film solar cell

Scientists in Germany demonstrated a slot die coating process for large-scale production of perovskite thin-film solar cells that achieved a maximum efficiency of 20.83%. Using an additive, and experimenting to find the optimal concentration, the group demonstrated improved control over the crystallization process – crucial for developing stable, repeatable processing.

Raising the temperature on module standards

Scientists in the U.S. laid out the rationale behind new PV module testing specifications published last year, which aim to better take into account the role of temperature in various types of performance loss. They suggest a new ‘98th percentile’ approach to measuring module operating temperatures, which would offer system designers a better understanding of the module’s performance in a particular ‘micro-environment’.

Australian startup aims to become one of the first first Li-ion anode producer outside China

A handful of companies are challenging Chinese control of a core material in lithium-ion battery production, before the electrification of transport truly kicks off the global battery boom. International Graphite, a Perth-based startup at the forefront of this effort, recently spoke to pv magazine Australia about the surprisingly collaborative race to feed global demand.

Canadian start-up secures US$2.5 million to launch omnidirectional anti-reflective glass

Edgehog secured the funds from Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC). The special glass is hydrophobic and is claimed to be able to reduce the accumulation of dust and residue, thus reducing the need for maintenance.

Dutch grid operator mulls incentives to reduce or curtail solar

The Limburg section of the network could face congestion problems for a decade, according to transmission system operator Tennet, prompting talk of offering auction-determined incentives to clean-power generators to reduce their output.

Manufacturing

Featured

Bifacial adoption spurs rethink on PID

PV systems are unique among electronic devices, as they are expected to survive outdoors for at least 25 to 30 years. This makes module and system quality one of the cornerstones of guaranteed returns on investment. Potential-induced degradation (PID) is a critical failure mode with a potentially high financial impact. New research from imec and Hasselt University looks at the damaging impact that PID can have on bifacial technology, writes Michaël Daenen, a professor at EnergyVille and Hasselt University.

GE chooses Australia to launch new line of solar inverters

Just as Australia thought its pioneering days were over, it has become the first country in the world to sell General Electric’s new solar inverters.

Nerves of steel: European Commission considers extension to import duty

Since summer 2018, a 25% charge has been levied by the EU on steel-product import volumes in excess of historical norms. European manufacturers say there is still a global steelmaking glut and the U.S. is showing no signs of lifting its restrictions.

GCL-Poly continues to ramp production capacity commitments

The poly maker is making significant investment pledges into new production lines in Sichuan and Inner Mongolia.

The weekend read: Bifacial adoption spurs rethink on PID

PV systems are unique among electronic devices, as they are expected to survive outdoors for at least 25 to 30 years. This makes module and system quality one of the cornerstones of guaranteed returns on investment. Potential-induced degradation (PID) is a critical failure mode with a potentially high financial impact. New research from imec and Hasselt University looks at the damaging impact that PID can have on bifacial technology, writes Michaël Daenen, a professor at EnergyVille and Hasselt University.

First Solar signs 2.4 GW deal, reports results from a “challenging” 2020

The thin-film module manufacturer achieved a turnover of $2.7 billion and a profit of $400 million last year. The company also revealed that it is evaluating further U.S. manufacturing expansion, “contingent on the right policy environment.”

Energy Storage

Featured

New EU battery rules support a sustainable industry

On Dec. 10, European Internal Market and Environment Commissioners Thierry Breton and Virginijus Sinkevičius, in conjunction with Vice President Maroš Šefčovič, announced a keenly anticipated piece of legislation: the commission’s proposal for modernized EU battery rules. Pia Alina Lange – head of communications for Recharge, the European battery industry association – says that while there are potential pitfalls with the new regulation, it could pave the way to sustainable industry development.

LG Energy recalling battery systems in Australia due to fire risks

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has confirmed a recall notice for some of LG Energy Solution’s battery energy storage systems due to potential fire-related risks.

Australian green hydrogen vessel deemed ‘highly competitive’

A scoping study has found that Global Energy Ventures’ compressed hydrogen ship is technically feasible and ‘highly competitive’ to transport the hyped future fuel at distances that conveniently connect Australia to Asian markets.

Tesvolt launches commercial battery with inverter and energy management system

According to the German manufacturer, the TS-I HV 80 can combine a wide variety of applications such as optimized self-consumption and intelligent peak load capping.

Pumped hydro with desalination, powered by renewables

EDF and Oceanus plan to build a pumped hydro storage station and a desalination system powered by wind and solar. The system will use saltwater to produce hydropower during periods of high demand, while producing affordable freshwater.

Novel nanomaterial to replace graphite in lithium-ion batteries

Porous nanostructured microspheres made of copper, iron, and iron oxide were used by an international research team as negative anode material in lithium-ion batteries. The new technique is claimed to provide three times more capacity than batteries based on graphite anodes.

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