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Magazine Archive 11-2010

Cautious optimism

Solar Power International: The development of photovoltaics in the U.S. is still being drip-fed by politics – a fact that became very obvious at this year’s Solar Power International in Los Angeles.

Discreet wiring

Back contact cells: The first solar cells with contacts located on their back side were made in the mid-1970s. Although they offer many advantages, only a few models have been able to really conquer the market up to now. Now, cooperation between Solland Solar and Schott Solar is supposed to change that.

End of the close season?

Social responsibility: The solar industry has to get used to stronger public headwinds when it comes to socially acceptable production standards. What is known as Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) will play a more important role for photovoltaics companies going forward. But the question remains – does CSR pay?

Faster, larger, easier

Ground-mounted installations: Time is money, so connecting up megawatt parks to the grid has to become faster. Smart ways to secure modules help accelerate the process. GPS-controlled ramming robots and giant modules are further aids to speed up future ground-mounted installations.

I came, I installed… I left

Shell Solar: Thousands of solar power systems were installed by the former Shell Solar in a bid to provide the average South Asian with uninterrupted electricity for their daily needs. The joy of green energy quickly turned to anger. What these people did not count on was Shell Solar bailing out and leaving them in the lurch.

Light efficiency

Laser manufacturing: Lasers are vital tools for producing thin film modules. In particular, high-performance ultra short pulse lasers, which create pulses of a few picoseconds, allow for increased throughput and optimal processing results. Jan Wieduwilt of Trumpf GmbH explains their benefits.

Macro themes are key

Ardour Solar Index: The positive fanfare from the SPI conference is winding down in view of ongoing concerns about Chinese policy.

Northern domestic action

Ontario: The Canadian Province of Ontario, with its FIT program, is considered the draft horse of the North American PV market. A domestic content provision is to keep the value creation within the province. Already dozens of international companies have settled in the province within just a few months. One unanswered question is, however, for how long the high subsidies can be paid, and whether the high price market is, in the long, run competitive.

Outsourcing and streamlining

CEO-Interview: Solon, one Europe’s largest PV manufacturers, experienced a difficult economic situation at the beginning of the year. Chief Executive Officer, Stefan Säuberlich, talks about the problems that the Berlin-headquartered company solved and how he advertises the company’s products.

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