China: Talesun wins gigawatt solar module order

According to Talesun, the majority of the modules will be installed in China, however there are further sites that have been identified worldwide. The China Merchants New Energy Group, which specializes in solar system design, construction and operation, will act as owner and operator of the plants.

Under the terms of the contract, Talesun will deliver 300 megawatts (MW) of modules for projects in China. A further 50 MW will be supplied annually, for three years, for other international projects. No further details were divulged.

Talesun, which was just established in 2011 and is located in Munich, San Jose and Shanghai, adds that its current photovoltaic cell and module manufacturing capacity is one gigawatt (GW) and 1.5 GW, respectively. Meanwhile, by the end of 2013, it is planning to reach two GW worth of module (mono- and multi-crystalline) production. It currently manufactures in the Chinese province of Jiangsu.

Grid integration issues

Interestingly, while China is set to become the biggest solar market in the future, grid connection has been identified as one of the main challenges to photovoltaic development in the country, despite the implementation of the feed-in tariff last July.

As Sebastian Meyer, director of research and advisory at Azur International, reported at Solarpraxis’ first "Project implementation conference – China 2012" in Shanghai, in March, interconnection queues and curtailment will occur as the country’s wind and solar pipelines intersect: wind has currently installed 65 GW compared to solar’s 2.89 GW; in the future, 350 GW of wind and 45 GW of photovoltaics is expected to be added to the grid.

pv magazine also learned from sources who wish to remain anonymous, that while 2.89 GW worth of photovoltaic projects were built in the country in 2011, under half have actually been grid connected. It was additionally interesting to note in China’s New Energy Chamber of Commerce (CNECC) vice secretary, Wang Hui’s presentation on the first day of Asia Solar, that he only mentioned grid connected photovoltaic capacity in 2010 in China – 800 megawatts, which "caused an impact" – and failed to talk about 2011’s figures.

As China’s solar significance grows, it will be interesting to see how it deals with its grid integration issues.