Fraunhofer ISE reclaims multicrystalline PV cell efficiency record with 21.9%

German solar research institute Fraunhofer ISE has reclaimed the multicrystalline PV cell efficiency record, achieving 21.9%. Fraunhofer researchers deployed n-type high-performance multicrystalline technology to produce the record-setting PV cell.

Australia: 320 MW of solar farms commence construction in Victoria

Three PV power plants worth a combined 320 MW have begun construction in the southeastern Australian state of Victoria. A joint venture between Overland Sun Farming and the UK’s Island Green Power is behind the AU$500 million (US$384 million) development, which is going ahead despite the projects not having yet signed PPAs.

Foresight purchases first Australian PV power plant, with 25 MW Barcaldine project

Britain’s Foresight Group had made its first investment into large scale PV in Australia. It announced today the acquisition of the 25 MW Barcaldine Remote Community Solar Farm in Queensland.

Western Australia Labor pushes for solar, pumped hydro for coal-town Collie

With the future of some of its coal-fired generators in doubt, the town of Collie in Western Australia may be revitalised with new solar, biomass and pumped hydro facilities.

Endeavour Energy to deploy large scale storage in Australia to reduce network investment

New South Wales grid operator Endeavour Energy is tendering for a large scale battery storage array to reduce network costs for a new housing development west of Illawarra.

Australian solar farm capital intensity halves, due to smarter, cheaper plants

The capital intensity per watt of the utility scale solar plants in the current development pipeline in Australia is about half that of those that are already operational.

Australian zinc refinery to build 100MW solar plant

Australian zinc metals producer Sun Metals is to build a 100MW solar PV plant to supply its refinery located near Townsville, in northern Queensland, in a landmark development in the Australian renewable energy landscape.

Western Power launches 5MW microgrid project for Kalbarri

The West Australian town of Kalbarri is set to install a $10 million microgrid, which will integrate distributed solar, a 1.7MW wind farm, and 2MWh battery system, to increase the reliability of electricity supply to the holiday location.

Holland: 2.5 GW of PV applications for autumn SDE+ round

Almost 2.5 GW of solar projects have been submitted to the Netherland’s autumn SDE+ tender round. The SDE+ autumn round has a budget of €5 billion available to renewable energy projects, with the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs announcing last week that 2.439 GW of solar projects, worth €11.5 billion, had applied for the SDE+ subsidy in the latest tender round.

Meyer Burger announces recapitalization program, EUR67 million HJT order

Swiss PV technology provider Meyer Burger has announced a recapitalization program that will see the company issue CHF160 million in new shares to ensure the repayment of a CHF130 million bond due in 2017, adjust the conditions of a second CHF100 million bond, proposing a 2018 put option be removed, and increase a borrowing provision on its headquarters from CHF30 million to CHF60 million.