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Magazine Archive 09-2016

The heart of PV

Junction boxes: An often underexplored component in the PV system, the junction box holds immense potential as a means of safeguarding power production, protecting modules, increasing yield and monitoring output – and an evolution is underway.

Business-oriented PV testing

Testing and finance: Business-oriented testing reduces exposure to technology risks, therefore lowering barriers to solar PV plant financing, writes Frédéric Dross, Head of Module Business at DNV GL.

Thin competition in thin film

Thin film ranking: Using the latest data from analysts IHS Markit and figures reported by the companies themselves, pv magazine rounds up the five leading module producers currently operating in the global thin film space.

Capital punishment

Corporate funding update: Solar total corporate funding continues to decline, hitting a new low of $1.7 billion in the second quarter, says Mercom Capital CEO Raj Prabhu. However, residential and commercial project funds have picked up steam, attracting $1.4 billion in investment – a 36% increase.

What counts …

Module prices: In an overall quiet market characterized by the onset everywhere of summer vacation, module prices generally declined in July.

Caution in the air

Guggenheim Solar Index: Anticipated slowdown in the Chinese market, post-peak years on the cards for Japan, and with many U.S. developers viewing the ITC extension as a bit of breathing space, solar stocks have begun to slide.

Wheels keep on turning

India update: As cumulative solar installations in India cross 8 GW, optimism is tempered somewhat by persistent challenges that the industry must still face, writes Raj Prabhu, CEO and cofounder of Mercom Capital Group.

Consume, control

Home monitoring: Solar monitoring companies that serve homeowners have an uphill battle in terms of educating their customers to use the systems to their full advantage.

Why, robot

Automation in PV: With huge leaps made in automation of PV module production facilities over the past decade, module quality and output have seen dramatic increases. However, differences still exist among tier-1 manufacturers in terms of relative levels of automation, with some manufacturers choosing not to automate certain process steps for reasons of cost, flexibility and even quality. George Touloupas of Clean Energy Associates examines the major pros and cons for automation of key process steps, and asks why some have chosen one approach over the other.

Enel and its global presence

Enel insight: Multinational power company Enel has in recent years placed renewable energy production center stage, boasting a highly diverse network of power plants ranging from hydroelectric to thermoelectric, nuclear, wind, and solar. pv magazine spoke with Antonio Cammisecra, head of global renewables business development, about the strategy and role of Enel in the solar industry, and its future market and technological goals.

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