Markets & Policy

European research project launched

A three-year multilateral and multinational research project has been launched, aimed at bringing efficiency, output and utilization gains right across the photovoltaic system. From cell to smart grid, the ERG project will involve research and development businesses, and bodies from eight European countries.

S.A.G Solarstrom not to issue 2012 sales forecast

In light of increased financing costs and major European photovoltaic markets facing an uncertain immediate future, S.A.G. Solarstrom AG has today reported that earnings are down for 2011.

Hybrid solar cells with potential to push through efficiency barrier

New research from the University of Cambridge in the U.K. is developing a method by which more of sun’s spectrum can be harnessed by a photovoltaic cell. In theory, the hybrid semiconductor method could push through the theoretical efficiency barrier limiting silicon solar cells.

Solon: Further takeover details emerge

Details over Microsol’s intended takeover of Solon SE have emerged. Under its plans, the facility at Greifswald will close and 25 jobs will be lost.

Germany: More FIT proposals on the table

The Germany solar incentive debate continues. While it was announced last week that there are plans to introduce a feed-in tariff (FIT) cap on photovoltaic modules, yet another proposal has suggested that only 80 percent of fed-in solar electricity should receive a tariff.

Germany plans PV FIT cap for modules

Ever clearer signals are emerging that Germany’s Federal Government is planning a new type of cap for solar subsidies. According to the latest plans, only a yearly electricity yield of between 800 and 900 kilowatt (kW) hours per kW peak will qualify for a tariff. Such a rule would, above all, benefit Chinese module and inverter suppliers.

Glut instincts: Is there a solution to the SREC oversupply?

New Jersey and Pennsylvania are suffering from too much of a good thing. The two northeastern U.S. states have an oversupply of Solar Renewable Energy Certificates, also called SRECs. How they solve the problem will be instructive to utility boards, load-serving entities (LSEs), the solar industry; and governments, environmentalists, and electricity customers worldwide.

Polysilicon prices continue to drop for solar

Lower polysilicon prices and higher photovoltaic module efficiencies are expected to further lower crystalline silicon (c-Si) module prices in 2012, according to Brett Prior, a senior analyst at U.S.-based GTM Research, the market research arm of Greentech Media, in Boston.

PV manufacturing equipment market outlook not so bleak

New research has revealed that while forecasts for the photovoltaic manufacturing equipment industry are depressing, there is a 20 gigawatt (GW) opportunity to replace aging equipment over the next four years.

UK STA says next PV cuts will be "destructive"

As was announced yesterday, the U.K. Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has proposed yet more changes to the country’s photovoltaic feed-in tariffs (FITs). While the move has been described as a “huge step forward”, the industry says the impending tariff reductions will be “destructive”.

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