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Technology and R&D

Australian startup aims to become one of the first first Li-ion anode producer outside China

A handful of companies are challenging Chinese control of a core material in lithium-ion battery production, before the electrification of transport truly kicks off the global battery boom. International Graphite, a Perth-based startup at the forefront of this effort, recently spoke to pv magazine Australia about the surprisingly collaborative race to feed global demand.

Modular lift system for solar panels

Altrex, a scaffolding and ladder producer in the Netherlands, has developed a new modular lift solution for solar panels. The system can raise one solar panel at a time and can be operated by a single installer using nothing other than a cordless drill, the company claims.

Canadian start-up secures US$2.5 million to launch omnidirectional anti-reflective glass

Edgehog secured the funds from Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC). The special glass is hydrophobic and is claimed to be able to reduce the accumulation of dust and residue, thus reducing the need for maintenance.

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Australian green hydrogen vessel deemed ‘highly competitive’

A scoping study has found that Global Energy Ventures’ compressed hydrogen ship is technically feasible and ‘highly competitive’ to transport the hyped future fuel at distances that conveniently connect Australia to Asian markets.

Pumped hydro with desalination, powered by renewables

EDF and Oceanus plan to build a pumped hydro storage station and a desalination system powered by wind and solar. The system will use saltwater to produce hydropower during periods of high demand, while producing affordable freshwater.

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Novel nanomaterial to replace graphite in lithium-ion batteries

Porous nanostructured microspheres made of copper, iron, and iron oxide were used by an international research team as negative anode material in lithium-ion batteries. The new technique is claimed to provide three times more capacity than batteries based on graphite anodes.

The weekend read: Bifacial adoption spurs rethink on PID

PV systems are unique among electronic devices, as they are expected to survive outdoors for at least 25 to 30 years. This makes module and system quality one of the cornerstones of guaranteed returns on investment. Potential-induced degradation (PID) is a critical failure mode with a potentially high financial impact. New research from imec and Hasselt University looks at the damaging impact that PID can have on bifacial technology, writes Michaël Daenen, a professor at EnergyVille and Hasselt University.

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Sensorless fault-detection method for rooftop, large-scale solar

Turkish researchers have developed an algorithm to distinguish faults and changes in PV plant output. The sensorless method only uses electrical data gathered from the DC inputs of inverters. They tested it on 8.5 MW of ground-mount PV at nine sites, as well as 8.2 MW across 18 rooftops.

Metal-perovskite-metal back contact solar cell with 4.31% efficiency

A numerical study by researchers at India’s Chitkara University has shown enhanced charge extraction in metal-perovskite-metal back-contact solar cell structure through electrostatic doping. The proposed design yielded a 59.4% improvement in power conversion efficiency over previously reported structures.

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Indian panel-cleaning startup expands manufacturing capacity

Solavio Labs has already held three funding rounds to support the development of its new panel-cleaning robot.

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