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Magazine Archive 09-2017

Calculating the cost

Tracker maintenance: Trying to chase down O&M costs for trackers is a bit like a trip down Alice’s rabbit hole. The rich landscape of detail that materializes tends to obscure the original mission. pv magazine digs into the quandary to investigate whether the numbers stack up.

Off-site, in mind

Corporate PPAs: Power purchase agreements can offer innovative solutions for the growth of off-site solar, which is an area of the PV industry that is ripe for investment, writes Benoy Thanjan from Reneu Energy.

Large-scale disruptor

Utility-scale storage: Past deployment has been steady, but 2017 appears to be the year large-scale battery storage begins achieving its disruptive potential. French developer Neoen is teaming with Tesla to deliver a 100 MWh storage array to strengthen the South Australian grid – which must be in place and installed by the time the summer peak electricity demand arrives.

Out of the blocks, on to the track

Storage growth: For so long, energy storage has revved impatiently at the traffic lights, promising rapid acceleration but achieving only steady deployment speeds. But will a series of high profile acquisitions and movements within the sector yield the convergence of cash and confidence required to expedite the widespread adoption and cost reduction necessary to take storage into the fast lane?

Developing a nose for performance

Monitoring: Having picked up a 2017 DSM SunRISE TechBridge Challenge award in June, SunSniffer is taking aim at the U.S. market, with its intelligent PV power plant monitoring system. While he hits on a number of buzzwords within the 2017 solar sector, not least digitization, SunSniffer CEO Ingmar Kruse says that there is a strong technological basis and financial case underpinning the solution.

On the charge

European storage landscape: The European battery storage market is poised for a six-fold increase over the next six years, writes Delta-ee’s principal analyst Scott Dwyer.

Out on the water

The rise of floating PV: Floating solar power solutions have emerged from a niche oddity to mainstream baseload; the latest Chinese tender set covers 1 GW worth of projects, potentially the new normal for FPV. Indeed, Ciel & Terre, the current market leader, says there could be 3 GW of FPV by 2020, per analysts’ predictions.

Light in a blackout

Microgrid development: Driven by their ability to operate during blackouts and provide ancillary grid services, microgrids are popping up all over the United States. As more microgrids emerge, clusters of them could transform the centralized grid to a decentralized grid of microgrids powered by renewables.

PID, soiling and module degradation in hot climates

PID in India: In the cost-conscious Indian solar sector, ensuring reliable power output should be the number one priority. However, an example of one solar farm suffering from the ill-effects of under-performing modules, installation malpractice and unsatisfactory maintenance shows how corner cutting from the outset is more damaging in the long run.

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