Intersolar & ees Awards: Technical innovations and outstanding projects


Celebrating their tenth anniversary at this year’s event, the Intersolar awards were handed out on Wednesday evening. There were a total of 133 submissions from 21 countries. Three awards were given in the PV category.

The Q-PEAK RSF L-G4.2 solar module from Hanwha Q-Cells uses a new steel frame instead of an aluminum frame. This not only saves manufacturing costs and CO2 emissions, but also allows an innovative and cost-effective fastening of the modules to the substructure of outdoor areas. The module has already received a pv magazine award in advance.

Another award went to the French frame manufacturer Ciel et Terre for the Hydrelio floating PV mounting system.This makes it possible to install photovoltaic systems on water surfaces.In Japan alone, around 50 MW of this new system were introduced in 2016, according to the award ceremony.

In total, 63 MW have been installed with the Hydrelio system. In addition to making use of otherwise empty surface area, the nearby water cools the modules, thus increasing their yield. There can also be advantages for the water itself. In drinking water reservoirs, for example, the shading through the photovoltaic system reduces the undesirable growth of algae.

The third Intersolar Award in the photovoltaics category went to the freestanding Sunny Tripower CORE1 series inverter from SMA.The device is designed for commercial and outdoor installations.The jury was impressed by improved efficiency, technical design and easy handling.

In the category “Outstanding solar projects” five projects were recognized.Goldbeck Solar received the award for a freestanding facility over a landfill site.The company Sunfarming received an award for a training project in South Africa combining food production in and power generation on greenhouses.RAM Pharma was awarded a project for solar steam generation for industrial processes in Jordan.The provider of off-grid applications Phaesun from Memmingen, Germany and the University of Hohenheim received another award for a concept for the stabilization of a milk-cooling chain using solar power.This is already being implemented in some projects in Kenya and Tunisia.Next Kraftwerke was awarded for the development of the virtual power plant Nextpool, which now comprises more than 650 megawatts of photovoltaics.

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Awards for storage
In addition to the Intersolar Awards, the ees Awards have also been awarded for the past four years.This is how the promising innovations from the storage industry are distinguished.The finalists included ten products from nine different companies.On Wednesday afternoon the three equivalent winners were announced:

The storage system Centurio Energy Storage System from manufacturer Energy Depot from Constance was awarded by the jury, among other things, for a high efficiency and good scalability up to 32.8 kWh. In addition, the three-phase device combines high-quality components and operates in a phase-balanced manner at a very high control speed. An integrated hybrid inverter converts power for battery and photovoltaic system. The system can be operated both in parallel and off-grid mode.

Another ees Award went to the standalone battery module produced by Korean manufacturer LG Chem. The jury was convinced by its high energy density and broad range of applications. The simple scalability of ten modules to a total capacity of 65 kWh was probably another reason for the decision.

The third winner is the Matrix storage system from German manufacturer Solarwatt. The jury distinguished the system among other things because of its good scalability up to the megawatt range. It also has a high input voltage of up to 900 volts, is compatible with almost all current inverters and is easy to transport and install.

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