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EBRD, KfW provide €135 million loan for next-gen cathode material plant in Poland

The new material is not commercially available yet, but in trials the materials allegedly proved its technical and economical superiority over NMC 622, NMC 811 and NCA batteries.
Technology

Designer molecules enable ‘two for one’ efficiency boost

Scientists in the U.S. have come a step closer to taking advantage of singlet fission - a phenomenon seen in certain solar cell materials that promises to greatly increase energy yield. By designing and testing various molecules, the group was able to be...
Hydrogen

Power-to-gas facility in Canada could pay back in just under three years

The facility's size and operational pattern could be optimized using a mixed-integer linear programming-based model. By selling hydrogen, supplying grid ancillary services and selling by-product oxygen, power-to-gas economics could be dramatically improv...
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Installations

PPA-linked 120 MW solar park goes online in Australia

The 120 MW solar project near Wagga Wagga in New South Wales, the first renewable energy asset in the portfolio of network owner Spark Infrastructure, has achieved a critical milestone in the face of market challenges and delays.
Installations

Colombia’s PV project pipeline reaches 8.8 GW

According to the Mining and Energy Planning Unit (UPME), there are currently 385 projects totaling 15 GW at different stages of development, including 4 biomass, 17 wind, 93 hydro, 271 photovoltaic and 7 thermal.
Markets & Policy

Chad considers construction of 200 MW solar-plus-storage plant

The minister of finance and budget and the minister of energy have signed a memorandum of understanding with Argentina-based Alcaal Group relating to the feasibility studies of a photovoltaic plant with a capacity of up to 200 MW with large storage capac...
Markets & Policy

The PV world 10 years ago – Summer Series Part V

pv magazine editor Pilar Sánchez Molina takes a look at PV sector news from 10 years ago as part of an ongoing series. These insights bring back memories of an exciting, challenging period, while pointing to where we might be in 2030.
Manufacturing

Fraunhofer ISE claims 25.9% efficiency for III-V tandem solar cell

The new results mark an improvement on the institute's previous 24.3% efficiency record. The III-V tandem solar cell is directly grown on silicon.
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Press Releases

Trina Solar at SNEC: the Vertex module takes the lead of PV industry

This year’s SENC (International Photovoltaic Power Generation and Smart Energy Exhibition & Conference) was held later than in previous years because of COVID-19. The pandemic has had a huge impact on the global economy, and every industry faces very tough challenges as a result.

DuPont Highlights Solar Innovations at 2020 SNEC PV Power Expo

SHANGHAI, China, August 8, 2020 – DuPont Photovoltaic Solutions (DuPont) showcases a broad portfolio of innovative materials as well as customer collaborations at the 2020 SNEC International Photovoltaic Power Generation and Smart Energy Exhibition, booth W4-555, in Shanghai, China.

ET Solar Attended SNEC 2020 PV Power Expo

On August 8th,2020, the SNEC 2020 PV Power Expo was held at Shanghai’s new international expo center in China. As a leading photovoltaic manufacturing company of high-quality PV products, ET Solar brought it’s Southeast Asia manufacturing capacity and it’s energy storage products to this exhibition.

3D-Micromac receives order from LWD Solar for a microCELL™ TLS half-cell laser system

3D-Micromac AG, the industry leader in laser micromachining and roll-to-roll laser systems for the photovoltaic, medical device and electronics markets, today announced the order intake for a microCELL TLS laser system for the plant in Langenwetzendorf, Thuringia. The initiator of the investment is the Heckert Solar GmbH, one of the largest and leading PV module manufacturers in Germany with a production capacity of 400 MW at their site in Chemnitz.

Opinion & Analysis

Featured

All details of Ukraine’s new feed-in tariffs for PV

On July 21, 2020, the Law on Feed-in Tariff Restructuring was passed by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.

Solar’s warranty risk

The warranty risk of solar must be addressed early in the development phase of PV projects, as it is not possible to buy warranty insurance later during the operational phase. Decisions taken by developers at this stage will remain important for the next 25 years. The good news is that an industry standard exists, and it can be easily and cost-effectively applied to most PV projects, writes Ronald Sastrawan from Munich Re.

Three factors for success in the Irish solar market

Recent years have seen an explosion of installed PV capacity across the European Union, fueled by the well-documented rapid reduction in technology costs and favorable subsidy regimes in many jurisdictions. However, one corner of Northern Europe remains relatively untouched by the solar revolution, writes Adam Sharpe of Everoze. The Republic of Ireland currently has the second-lowest amount of installed PV capacity in the European Union, at just 36 MW by the end of 2019.

Terawatt scale by 2022

The solar sector is no stranger to breaking records. Perhaps the most impressive figure to emerge from SolarPower Europe’s new ‘Global Market Outlook’ is that the global solar sector will reach terawatt scale by 2022 – just four years after the 500 GW milestone was reached. Michael Schmela from SolarPower Europe sets out the reasoning behind this and other key findings in the report.

As countries reopen, market recovery begins

As the Covid-19 pandemic gradually eases, countries around the world have slowly begun to relax lockdown measures. Some countries have also launched varying types of economic stimulus to support the solar sector. In contrast to others, the Chinese market is stable, as the country has had some success in controlling the virus.

Universal energy access just got harder

This year marks a uniquely critical juncture on the road to universal access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy. The massive disruption caused by Covid-19 complicates the outlook to 2030, which is the target date for reaching UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7, writes Rohit Khanna, manager of the World Bank’s Energy Sector Management Assistance Program.

Covid-19

Featured

Portugal’s 700 MW solar auction ten times oversubscribed

Minister of the environment and climate action, João Pedro Matos Fernandes, announced the development and revealed nine of the ten lots tendered include energy storage.

Covid-19 weekly round-up: Updates shed light on tough second quarter for solar industry firms

But Israeli inverter company Solaredge and Indian engineering, procurement and construction services provider Sterling and Wilson have both offered hope of a recovery in Europe as Chinese glass producer Xinyi said it kept the furnaces going throughout the worst of the pandemic.

Wacker CEO hits out at Chinese rivals

Rudolf Staudigl highlighted polysilicon manufacturing overcapacity among Chinese competitors as he announced Covid-19-battered second-quarter figures for the Munich-based chemicals conglomerate.

REC Silicon sells off last remnants of Moses Lake polysilicon

The Norwegian company mothballed its Washington State facility more than a year ago and is now reliant on semiconductor-grade poly and silane gas produced at its fab in Butte, Montana – a facility for which the business says it has received plenty of interest from potential purchasers.

SolarEdge up 12% after hours on second-quarter revenue and solid earnings – despite Covid-19

The inverter and energy storage company was able to maintain its streak of profitable quarters in what was expected to be a hard period for solar and the Israeli business said it sees “signs of recovery in the U.S.”

Value of Indian PV imports tanked 83% in second quarter

Mercom India Research has said the quarterly value of solar cell and module imports was down 83% in the second quarter of the year, compared to the same period of 2019, to sit 54% lower than the value recorded in the January-to-March window.

Markets & Policy

Featured

Shifting geopolitical sands

After a decade of operation, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has become an established presence in assisting the deployment of renewables. Now under the leadership of Director General Francesco La Camera, it continues its work on a range of issues pertaining to renewable energy deployment, with a renewed focus on facilitating international investment.

SNEC: Yingli Solar intensifies ties with Chinese PV companies

China’s Yingli Solar is partnering with a number of high-profile players in its domestic market to achieve mutually beneficial endeavors and promote the country’s clean energy sector.

Poland’s PV capacity reaches 2.26 GW

The country has deployed around 916 MW of new PV capacity in the first seven months of the year.

Canadian Solar plans new listing in China

Module manufacturing giant Canadian Solar says it has seen demand for modules bounce back in the second quarter of 2020, with module shipments and revenue for the period both exceeding guidance. The company is pressing ahead with plans for a second listing on a stock market in China as part of its strategy to deal with accelerating industry growth and market consolidation over the coming months.

The PV world 10 years ago – Summer Series Part IV

pv magazine editor Pilar Sánchez Molina takes a look at PV sector news from 10 years ago as part of an ongoing series. These insights bring back memories of an exciting, challenging period, while pointing to where we might be in 2030.

Consultants needed for West Africa Clean Energy Corridor

The ECOWAS Regional Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency is seeking consultants for the West African Clean Energy Corridor program. It expects the region to deploy 7.6 GW of renewable energy capacity by 2030.

Installations

Featured

Remote possibilities

If the Canadian Arctic strikes you as a place that doesn’t have enough sunlight for PV, you wouldn’t necessarily be correct. Although there are periods of 24-hour darkness in winter, there are locations with sufficient sunlight for PV to make a major dent in remote communities’ diesel consumption, reports Anteo Petkovic, from Green Sun Rising.

Facebook announces nearly 1 GW of new energy deals

As Facebook races to meet its goal of becoming 100% powered by renewables by the end of this year, it has made another massive investment in clean energy by signing contracts for 806 MW of new solar and wind capacity, with projects in Ireland and the US states of Utah, Ohio, Illinois, and Tennessee.

Texas approves 12 GW of solar projects in seven months

The Texas grid operator has more than tripled its pace of completing utility-scale solar interconnection studies since 2019. Yet the battery backlog continues to grow.

Innovative community solar in the United States

A 497 kW project on five roofs at George Washington University in Washington, D.C., uses SREC sales to provide $1.50 in community benefits for every dollar of power generated. Call it community solar-plus.

Digital prospecting and selling tools for rooftop PV

An Australian-developed aerial mapping technology is being deployed to speed PV uptake.

India’s NTPC 1.2 GW solar auction sees aggressive tariff of INR 2.43/kWh

Low tariff trends can be attributed to developers’ desperate attempt to take advantage of the current situation wherein only a safeguard duty of 14.9% is applicable, according to JMK Research.

Technology

Featured

The way to the TOPCon

TOPCon cell technology has become one of the two leading next-generation options after mono PERC. But for the n-type architecture to truly become a rival to PERC, high-quality and cost-effective production technologies must become settled.

New method to calculate solar irradiation on rear side of bifacial panels

Researchers have announced a new technique that is a modified version of the isotropic diffuse model.

Thin-film amorphous silicon greenhouses begin to sprout

Researchers have matched the tinting of semi-transparent PV modules with the bandwidth of light that plants absorb for photosynthesis. A promising trial with basil and spinach has opened up economic opportunities for farmers.

Solar tile with passive cooling

Researchers built the device by attaching 17%-efficient monocrystalline PV cells to a mortar roof tile that was doped with a phase-change material (PCM). The PCM solar tile provided 4.1% more power than the PV tile with no cooling agent in the winter, and 2.2% to 4.3% more during the summer.

Challenging plans to deploy PV on dikes

Dutch researchers are trying to determine whether large-scale PV projects can be deployed on flood-control dikes across the Netherlands. A 5 MW solar project has already been built on a dike near Groningen, but the researchers believe there is potential to build up to 2.9 GW of PV on such embankments.

Tesla may become power provider in Germany

The high-profile electric car maker is conducting a survey of German customers to gauge their interest in a Tesla electricity tariff.

Manufacturing

Featured

The hidden contest of the cell makers

Predicting which technological pathway will dominate in solar cell production is somewhat of a fool’s errand. A battle is currently underway between several of solar manufacturing’s big guns regarding both wafer size and p-or-n-type technology, and the outcome remains to be seen.

Jinko unveils new 610 W solar panels

The Chinese manufacturer introduced new PV modules this weekend at the SNEC solar exhibition in Shanghai.

Four injured in ‘incident’ at Wacker’s US polysilicon factory

The German chemicals producer said that the issue involved four contractors doing maintenance on non-operational equipment.

Kstar launches 1,500 V string inverter

The transformer-free 250 kW product offers a reported efficiency of 99%, providing a European rating of 98.5%.

SolarEdge violated Huawei inverter patent, rules Chinese court

Huawei said the Guangzhou Intellectual Property Court in China has ruled in its favor in a patent dispute with its Israeli rival.

Chinese PV Industry Brief: Polysilicon, module prices continue to rise

Polysilicon prices continued to soar this week. Prices have been rising across the PV supply chain since mid-July due to recent accidents at two Chinese polysilicon factories, according to EnergyTrend.

Energy Storage

Featured

Zero-waste batteries

Efforts to recycle lithium-ion batteries face a range of technical and economic challenges, but such programs are already far more commonplace than many assume. However, there are still significant obstacles looming a few years down the road.

Hydrogen can be transported by rail, German railway company says

A study by DB Energie shows that technically and legally there is nothing to be said against the transport of hydrogen by rail. However, there is still a lack of suitable transport containers.

The weekend read: Europe ramps up policy support for storage

Policy support for battery energy storage is gaining momentum across Europe as national governments remove regulatory barriers and the EU pledges financial support for this emerging technology. In several countries, revised capacity markets now allow energy storage operators to compete for subsidy contracts on a more equal footing with power generators. Support from the European Battery Alliance and €1 billion in loans from the European Investment Bank in 2020 alone should help shore up investor confidence. Battery storage will be a key component to support the growth of solar PV – but the rollout of projects will have to accelerate faster to fulfill this potential.

Low-cost catalysts for hydrogen production

Researchers in Singapore have taken a deep dive into spinel oxides – a class of materials known to act as a catalyst in the production of hydrogen through water electrolysis. Better understanding of how the materials work enabled the scientists to develop a machine learning model to predict their efficiency.

BP’s latest green pledge includes fossil fuel assets sell-off

The British energy company has pledged to raise investment in low-carbon energy – including biomass and natural gas-fired hydrogen – tenfold by 2030 and said it would reduce its upstream oil and gas activity 40% over the same period.

Looking to phosphorous for next-gen batteries

Scientists in the United States have fabricated a working lithium-ion battery using a phosphorous-based anode. The batteries show significantly higher capacity than today’s lithium-ion tech, and could serve as a guideline for future design of high-performance anodes for Li-ion batteries.

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