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Opinion & Analysis

Survey: How should smart grids be implemented?

PV integration in smart grids is a complex but highly relevant issue, with various aspects to be considered to develop different scenarios. Researchers in the IEA-PVPS Task 14 program are conducting a survey to collect opinions from peers in the PV branch to perform such an analysis.

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From 300 GW to 3,000 GW per year – a utopia?

The photovoltaic industry is expected to achieve annual global expansion of 300 GW as early as this year. That sounds like a lot, but is it enough? In view of climate change and rising energy demand, it is time for a new vision.

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A true beginning – how the IRA persuaded us to invest in the US

The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) has opened a new door for US solar manufacturers, as one of the executives behind a US-Jordanian project to bring PV production to the US explains.

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It could be simple to smarten up your inverter

With AI-enabled devices able to take the money-saving efficiency of lithium batteries to an incredibly granular level, research by Inion Software shows simple changes by inverter manufacturers would enable devices of almost any age to be “smartened up.”

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European solar manufacturers need state aid exemptions – now

If Europe is to come up with its own Inflation Reduction Act moment, and incentivize a return of EU solar manufacturing leadership, it must lift state-aid related restrictions on the PV manufacturers who have announced a willingness to build 30 GW of production lines.

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How low-light solar cells can decarbonize your home

With the latest generation of household devices increasingly connected and internet-of-things (IoT)-enabled, dye-sensitized solar cells can finally realize their latent promise and help reduce the carbon footprint of billions of manufactured goods.

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Solar aid in dark times

With Russia intent on destroying Ukraine’s energy infrastructure, a network of NGOs is taking up the challenge to donate small and mobile energy supply solutions. Astrid Schneider, a member of clean energy nonprofit Eurosolar, shared the story of the small solar kits that are making a big difference, in this month’s edition of pv magazine.

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Next year will bring micro and mega grids

This year has witnessed upheaval in the global energy system as inflation, geopolitical conflict, and the reality of a changing climate continue to drive the transition to cleaner energy. Next year, these trends are likely to continue and accelerate as renewable energy adoption continues to grow and the inextricable link between energy security and national security is increasingly recognized. Alan Greenshields, of US-based iron-salt flow battery maker ESS Inc, offers four predictions for 2023.

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Tracking environmental performance improvements in solar modules

New life-cycle assessment (LCA) data for PV systems confirms that greenhouse gas emissions from 1 kWh of solar electricity are far lower than emissions from fossil-fuel power plants. The difference has been fairly constant since 2018, but has improved substantially since when IEA PVPS started reporting on this measure in 1996.

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Solar module prices: A penny saved… is a panel spurned

PV module prices have finally stabilized and a slight downward trend has even started to set in. Whether this will continue depends mainly on how demand shapes up over the next few months. The softening of prices reflects a gradual build-up of inventories which need to be drawn down again this year, if possible – even if it means slashing prices. But for other PV-system components, the situation is quite different, writes Martin Schachinger of solar wholesaler pvXchange.

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