Pyrazine polymer PHATNs up cathode in sodium-ion batteries

Scientists at the University of Maryland have developed an organic polymer electrode which they claim demonstrates stable function for a sodium-ion battery over 50,000 cycles and also offers encouraging performance in magnesium-ion and aluminum-ion storage devices.

Upgrades needed to process larger wafers, says VDMA

In an update to its International Technology Roadmap for Photovoltaics, German engineering association the VDMA notes standardization of wafer size is a topic of great interest to the country’s PV equipment manufacturers, and modifications to lines will be needed to process wafer pieces larger that 161mm.

Longi demonstrates 20% bifacial boost

In a white paper published this week, Chinese module maker Longi Solar shares six months of data from a testing site in India that was built in cooperation with German testing institute TÜV Rheinland. The results show energy yield gains of around 20% for both bifacial mono PERC and n-type modules.

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Spain and Brazil the world’s ‘solar investment hotspots’ but eyes on Vietnam

Analysts at Fitch Solutions have published a report singling out Spain and Brazil as ‘outperformers’ in the global solar market and labelled Vietnam the “market to watch”. The analysts expect surging growth from the Southeast Asian nation to continue in the coming decade.

Scientists double down on hydrogen production

A team of scientists led by the University of Glasgow has discovered a more efficient method of splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen using electricity which it says could almost double the amount of hydrogen produced per millivolt.

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The weekend read: A lead-free future for solar PV

Lead plays an important role in crystalline silicon module manufacturing when it comes to cell interconnection. But even in small amounts, the presence of this toxic material in a PV module could be viewed as a black mark against the industry’s sustainable credentials. Alternatives are available, but it seems the price is not yet right for broader uptake.

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Carbon nanotubes provide a boost to perovskite solar

Scientists at the Tokyo Institute of Technology have developed a carbon nanotube which forms a strong junction with a lead-halide perovskite, improving performance and stability.

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US scientists create first rechargeable lithium-carbon dioxide battery

Researchers in Chicago have developed a world first fully rechargeable lithium-carbon dioxide battery, an achievement they claim could pave the way for the use of the greenhouse gas in advanced energy storage systems.

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Wacker slashes profit forecast amid polysilicon price slump

German polysilicon producer Wacker Chemie AG has reduced its earnings expectations for 2019, citing low prices for polysilicon. The company blamed the polysilicon price slump on oversupply from competitors in China, which muted an expected price increase in the second half of 2019.

UK: Give more power to regulators, says report

A report published recently by the United Kingdom’s National Infrastructure Commission says that the UK’s regulatory system must “adapt to meet the demands of the future” by providing new powers for regulators to ensure utility investments in sustainable infrastructure. The report notes that without such powers, the country will be unlikely to meet its target of zero emissions by 2050.

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