The town of Marble Bar in Western Australia’s remote East Pilbara region is famed for at one time recording 100 consecutive days of temperatures exceeding 37 C. So it’s no wonder the town’s residents have excess solar and nowhere to put it. That is, until now, thanks to the installation of a battery energy storage system beside the town’s centralized solar farm.
Newcastle University engineers have patented a thermal storage material that can store large amounts of renewable energy as heat for long periods. MGA Thermal is now manufacturing the thermal energy storage blocks as storage for large-scale solar systems and to repurpose coal-fired power stations.
Underground hydrogen storage seems to be coming up a lot lately, and with the burgeoning hydrogen industry needing somewhere to store itself, it’s not hard to understand why. One of the countries with the best credentials for the future hydrogen economy is Australia. A newly published report has quantified the country’s “massive opportunity” for underground hydrogen storage.
Norwegian hydropower giant and Europe’s largest renewable energy generator, Statkraft, has published its annual “Low Emissions Scenario”, which describes investment in green projects as “unstoppable”, while calling for a dramatic scaling up for renewables, electrification and green hydrogen.
US data management company Iron Mountain has a growing portfolio of onsite and PPA renewables, and it’s one of the first major corporate firms to track its renewables by the hour as part of an innovative PPA that may serve as a forerunner for widespread 24/7 matching.
Mining giant Rio Tinto has been on the back-foot since its destruction of 46,000-year-old sacred indigenous sites last year, costing one chief executive his job and one country a timeless piece of its cultural heritage. Along with the impacts of Covid-19 and stock price decline, the company is seeking to rebuild its brand with improved emissions reduction targets, which will see multi-gigawatt solar and wind installations.
A new study from researchers at the universities of Lancaster and Reading in the UK has managed to quantify the economic boost provided by the symbiotic relationship between solar farms and honeybee hives.
A report from Australia’s Future Battery Industries Cooperative Research Centre which analysed the development of battery hubs in the U.S., Germany and Japan, has found that co-location and cooperation between industry and government were key to their success. For Australia to play the same game, it will have to leverage its wealth of resources, and clean up its act along the way.
Re-Source 2021 took place in Amsterdam at the end of last week, and pv magazine was there to cover the event where the suppliers and sellers of renewable power purchase agreements (PPAs) meet the (largely corporate) buyers, though encouraging PPA uptake among small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) was among the major talking points, including ‘additionality’, de-risking renewable PPAs and 24/7 matching.
The modular solar marketplace is growing, especially in Australia where remote mining and agricultural sites appreciate the benefits of compact, movable solar. One new entrant is Western Australia’s CDI Energy with its “Rapid Solar Module”, which CDI founder and CEO Darryl Bower told pv magazine is up to 30% cheaper than fixed axis alternatives.
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