pv magazine Roundtables: Videos on solar everywhere, PV manufacturing trends, risk sharing in PPA markets, and green hydrogen


The renewed urgency of Europe’s race to decarbonize means we need to minimize land competition while being as pragmatic as we are productive – and thanks to its flexibility, both literally and figuratively, PV is increasingly able to kill two birds with one stone through dual use applications, be it in combination with buildings, agricultural land, or water bodies as the pv magazine Roundtables Europe session 6, Solar Everywhere, discovered on day 2.

During the 45-minute session, Samira Jama Aden, Architect Design Research at Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin’s BAIP consultancy for BIPV, and Teodosio del Caño, CTO at Onyx Solar, joined us for a panel discussion on building solar cities and structures; while Jan Mastny, Head of Sales at Studer Cables held a presentation on the five myths of PV projects.

Alexander Telje, Chief Commercial Officer at Ocean Sun; Philipp Sinn, CEO of Sinn Power; Nathanaël Kasriel, Chief of staff to the CEO at France Agrivoltaïsme; and Andrea Viaro, Head of Sales EMEA Renewable Energy at Stäubli Electrical Connectors also contributed to the discussions.

Themes addressed during the Solar Everywhere session were:

  • How high density residential and commercial properties can adopt PV, and the ways in which solar engineering, architecture, and construction can come together to create clean energy powerhouses.
  • Innovations in floating PV that are making waves and expanding PV-on-water applications, and how quality concerns can be addressed.
  • How Agrivoltaics can unlock new space for solar, and the ways in which both agricultural and energy output can be optimized.

Deploying high efficiency: PV cell and module manufacturing trends and concepts

As session 7 of the Roundtables demonstrated, it is an exciting time in PV cell and module manufacturing, as the switch to high performance n-type technologies gathers pace.

In addition to looking at silicon PV manufacturing trends in 2022, high Efficiency HJT at scale, a panel of four experts – Nicolas Chouleur Partner at Everoze; Roberto Murgioni, Head of Technical Service & Product Management at JinkoSolar Europe; George Touloupas, Senior Director of Technology and Quality for Solar and Storage at Clean Energy Associates (CEA); and Edurne Zoco, Executive Director at IHS Markit – discussed why now is the time for n-type to go big.

Molly Morgan, Research Analyst at Exawatt and Po-Chuan Yang, General Manager, HJT BU at Risen Energy also contributed to the discussions.

Themes discussed were:

  • Technology trends in PV manufacturing: How high efficiency n-type cells are progressing toward large-scale manufacturing at competitive cost.
  • A closer look at the latest cell concepts – heterojunction and TOPCon – and the performance advantages that make them a worthwhile investment compared with established PERC products.
  • Following these trends downstream, we ask when and where does it already make sense to deploy the highest efficiency products, and how can we expect this picture to develop in the coming years.

Module design choices, reliability, and revenue expectations

Buyers of PV modules must decide between different design options in addition to evaluating other product specifications. At the beginning of session 8, Longi Solar shared its argument on module sizes. Where there is an optimum size, the manufacturer saysthe best is not the largest option available, as disadvantages prevail when modules exceed a certain size.

The panel then went on to discuss how to best assess and select modules, and manufacturer design choices in times of supply chain restrictions. Djaber Berrian, PV Innovation and Design Engineer at EPC Belectric explained how they deal with the uncertainties resulting from the PAN-file data, which are needed for yield prognosis, and how the evaluation can depend on the choice of key performance indicators such as LCOE, ROI or net present value. He was joined by Jason Yan from Longi Solar along with the engineers and consultants from the Austrian Institute of Technology and PI Berlin.

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Spreading the load: Risk sharing in mature solar PPA markets

Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) are capable of unlocking huge swathes of development and providing a big push to Europe’s decarbonization. However, with the risk of ‘revenue cannibalization’ set to increase as more and more solar energy is generated at the same time, and curtailment already an issue in mature markets, how can these unsubsidized power purchase agreements adapt and evolve to meet the market’s renewable energy appetite?

Session 9 of the pv magazine Roundtables Europe zeroed in on the shape that offtake contracts and trading will take, how risks will be shared in the future and what it means for development.

Our panelists – Helen Dewhurst, Sustainability Analyst at BloombergNEF, Simone Rodolfi, Head of Origination & Business Development at Axpo Italia, Marc Oman, Principal, Energy & Infrastructure at Google, and Andy Sommer, Head of Fundamental Analysis & Modelling at Axpo Solutions – discussed their views of emerging trends in mature PPA markets, particularly the growing appetite for risk in solar investment and the reasons behind it.

High-tech energy storage & green hydrogen

The final session of day 2 focused on the determining conditions for solar-plus-storage and solar-plus-hydrogen business models, which will be realized in the next decade, are developing now.

Which business models for solar hydrogen production will work? And how will the political decisions made in the last year, particularly in the EU, and the cost forecast for electrolysers affect solar-plus-electrolyzer-and industrial decarbonization projects? Find out below:

The experts were: Giovanni Buogo, Western Europe Sales Director at Solis, Alena Fargere, Principal at Swen Capital Partners, Wilhelm Löwenhielm, Director ESS Business Area at Northvolt, Christian Pho Duc, CTO & Managing Director H2 Projects at Smartenergy, James Quinn CEO of Faradion, Max Reid, Research Analyst at Wood Mackenzie, and Paulo Rocha, Director Innovation and Sustainability at CIMPOR.

The rundown and videos from day one of the pv magazine Roundtables Europe event can be found here. Interested in a look backstage? View our photo gallery.

Finally, pv magazine would like to extend a huge thanks to all of our sponsors for helping to make the 2022 event such a success!

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