Vietnam has now effectively overtaken Thailand as the largest solar market in Southeast Asia in terms of installed solar operational capacity, with more than 6,314 MW installed up to September 2020. Many hundreds of MWs of solar projects are also still under construction or development. However, its solar (and other renewable energy) M&A activity has developed very slowly to date. There are many reasons to expect that this is about to change, but before we examine them, let us review the main factors behind this sluggish tempo.
Focusing on the big picture is always challenging, particularly in light of the current all-consuming coronavirus pandemic. However, there are some key issues related to the U.K. solar sector, which will feature significantly on the domestic agenda in the months ahead.
The Vietnamese renewables industry has been flourishing lately. Taking the example of the solar sector, the installed capacity increased from barely 134 MW in 2018 up to 6,000 MW in 2020. Vietnam has definitely emerged as one of the most active countries in South-East Asia and with the merit of diversifying its energy mix. They added capacity not only in solar – utility scale, commercial & industrial (C&I) rooftop – but also onshore/nearshore wind, hydro and to some extent biomass energy projects. Vietnam has shown levels of dynamism which has attracted initial investor interest.
The pandemic and accidents at polysilicon labs in China’s Xinjiang region put PV manufacturers under pressure to maintain production this year, while slowing cell and module R&D. After half-cut and multi-busbar becomes commonplace, manufacturers will continue to explore the high-density assembly methods that emerged last year, as well as n-type cells. But the market is also shifting to large formats, and the share of bifacial products is growing this year. As sizing up modules can bring immediate returns, PV InfoLink’s Amy Fang expects the PV industry to prioritize the development of large formats and bifacial products next year.
Since President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s election at the end of 2018, renewable energy in Mexico has faced an uncertain regulatory environment. The current government is focused on restoring the power and influence of Mexico’s state-owned energy companies. But it is now at a crossroads, as the previous administration aimed to open the segment up to foreign investment. Maria Chea of IHS Markit examines the policy decisions the government has taken this year and how these have soured private investor sentiment. These changes will likely weigh on utility-scale PV procurement in the country through 2024.
Solarpower Europe has called on member states to put solar and battery storage front and center when it comes to drawing up the Recovery and Resilience plans needed to secure a slice of the bloc’s proposed €672.5 billion post-Covid stimulus package.
The parliament and EU member states will now mull the proposed budget for 2021-27 which includes a €750 billion Covid recovery package and a Strategic Investment Facility it is hoped will unlock €150 billion for renewables and energy storage to 2027.
With the International Energy Agency publishing its latest five-year clean energy forecast today, pv magazine takes a look at the solar content of the 162-page document.
Shares in the Norwegian renewables company have been trading below the $26 price linked to a recent $527 million fundraising issuance which the developer launched to fund its planned acquisition of hydropower business SN Power.
The 24-day, digital 2020 Africa Energy Forum kicked off on October 20. The event brings together African energy sector officials to identify opportunities, air their views, form partnerships, and take the necessary steps to improve the industry. For solar, challenges in policy making, procurement processes and the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic were discussed, as well as emerging trends such as solar digitalization.
Although still unfinished, the 187 MW solar park under construction by German utility EnBW near Berlin has already begun delivering power to the grid.
The latest 800 MW of the 5 GW solar field to go live takes Dubai past its 2020 clean energy target of 7% by ensuring 9% of the emirate’s power comes from clean sources, according to the Dubai Water and Electricity Authority.
Kibing Group and CECEP have announced plans to increase their PV glass and solar module capacities, respectively. China Energy Investment Corp is planning a 400 MW solar park in the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region.
The polysilicon manufacturer says a lack of the raw material is causing a bottleneck for the industry but CEO has predicted it will be resolved as new production capacity comes online in the months ahead.
Lead-free perovskite-inspired materials still provide efficiencies that are too low for solar cells in outdoor environments. A British-Chinese research team, however, has demonstrated they have strong potential for indoor PV devices due to their ability to capture visible light.
The new technique, proposed by researchers in Pakistan, is claimed to estimate the voltage, current and temperature of a PV system without interrupting the power flow to load.
US giant AT&T has signed an agreement with Invenergy to purchase 500 MW from the upcoming 1.3 GW Samson Solar Energy Center in Texas. The deal will make AT&T one of the largest purchasers of corporate solar in the world.
The project will be developed under a credit line facility from the Exim Bank of India.
An extensive European Commission regulation has set the bar on those economic activities deemed to help in the war against global heating and, by implication, those which may hinder the effort.
The Chinese-Canadian company has secured two more deals in the Brazilian deregulated energy market. A 12-year PPA was awarded by BTG bank while a second, 15-year contract was awarded by power provider Furnas Centrais Elétricas.
A group of German scientists has analyzed the possible trajectory of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) in photovoltaic research and industry and has suggested a roadmap to bring this technology closer to mass production. Despite a large number of challenges, the academics predicted a brilliant future for CNTs in PV applications, explaining that the barriers to their adoption are constantly being reduced.
The choice of battery storage technologies in support of solar energy supply is broadening to suit a variety of emerging applications. VSUN has just made its first power play for vanadium-redox-flow batteries in the off-grid residential market.
A clean energy plan drawn up by the European Commission includes details of the various funding pots available to help ocean-based renewables hit 340 GW of generation capacity by mid century.
A British-German research team claims that organic PV technologies may become mature enough to compete with crystalline silicon and thin-film products not only in BIPV, but also in power generation in the electricity market. In order to get there, however, organic PV products will have to achieve higher efficiencies.
Scientists in South Korea demonstrated a perovskite cell with a certified efficiency of 24.4%. The device is claimed to maintain over 80% of its initial efficiency after 1,300 hours in the dark at 85 degrees Celsius.
Mexican solar module manufacturer Solarever has switched on the production lines of its manufacturing facility in Tecomán, in the state of Colima.
The Chinese photovoltaic manufacturer said the recent invalidation procedure for its patent at the Chinese Patent Office’s examination and invalidity department is only an administrative examination procedure that only examines whether or not the authorized Chinese patent complies with patent law requirements.
Avinash Hiranandani, global chief executive officer and managing director of RenewSys India, speaks to pv magazine about solar module technology trends and the company’s manufacturing focus.
It is now a well-established trend. After the switch to larger wafer sizes played out in 2019, this year has seen virtually all of the biggest PV manufacturers introduce new modules in dimensions above the 2-meter mark, and with power ratings in excess of 500 W – in some cases, as high as 800 W. As these modules begin to roll off production lines in larger quantities, it’s vital to take a look at the challenges and opportunities they bring to system design, installation, and long-term operation.
Researchers in Australia have conducted extensive research on all possible causes behind the light-elevated temperature-induced degradation (LeTID) in solar panels and presented a few mitigation strategies put in place by manufacturers to reduce its effects.
The country’s energy regulator will publish the auction’s final bidding terms in December. Projects awarded contracts under the auction will supply electricity under 15-year power purchase agreements for 2026-2040.
Australian design and manufacturing company PVDymanics has unveiled a solar canopy technology which can be used with both framed and frameless solar modules. The company believes its system can revolutionize the micro-grid market.
Iberlyzer will begin operations next year and will produce more than 200 MW of electrolyzers in 2023, with an initial investment of close to €100 million. In addition, the Spanish energy giant has signed an agreement with Norwegian company Nel to build and develop large electrolyzers in Spain.
The Indian Institute of Science (IISc) Bangalore has installed a 5.2 kW solar system linked to 150 Ah of lead-acid battery storage in a project supported by the Sunrise program led by Swansea University, in Wales.
Scientists in Qatar have developed a new model for setting up standalone EV recharging stations based on the hybridization of multiple renewable energy sources and different types of storage. The system includes power generation devices from CPV/T, wind, and biomass and is designed to fast-charge 80 electrical vehicles daily.
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