The global installation of photovoltaics is expected to reach the terawatt level within just five years, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. And with more than 99.1 GW of grid-connected solar installed in 2017, switching on to the importance of storage is key.
Sometimes there’s a first mover advantage. Sometimes there’s a first mover mess. In the case of residential energy storage, Australia’s early adoption has meant it’s been at the center of a rapid technology evolution as the market decides: Why do homeowners need energy storage?
Down for a trip Down Under? Melbourne is hosting The All Energy Australia conference on October 3-4, and pv magazine will hold its Quality Roundtable for the first time in Australia. The show itself is set to grow significantly and this years conference will see some 180 industry leaders and innovators discussing the drivers of clean energy.
Netherlands-based materials specialist DSM is working on several new innovations to serve the solar industry, including its endurance backsheets and anti-soiling coating. pv magazine had the chance to catch up with Jan Grimberg, DSM’s Business Director for Advanced Solar about these latest developments, and the trick to convincing the conservative manufacturing industry to work with new materials.
Producing PV project components locally can send a powerful message to policymakers: Build renewables, and the jobs will come.
As price pressure continues to exert its strong grip on the inverter market, digital services make their way into the offerings of manufacturers. The new technologies create the possibility to steadily generate profits, and thus create resilience to market fluctuations. But they also allow the installation of more solar assets, as they cater to the need to improve grid resilience to compensate for intermittent renewable energy.
An unexpectedly large gathering of international bifacial PV experts convened in Denver, USA in early September, at the 2018 bifiPV Workshop to trade notes on the performance of bifacial PV modules, lauded by some as the most promising advance in solar for a decade. pv magazine was on the spot.
Longi Green Energy Technology Co., Ltd has big plans. In the near future, it wants to manufacture 400 GW of monocrystalline silicon ingots and 200 GW of wafers per year. To get to those numbers – four times bigger than the whole solar industry today – the company partly wants to build factories in the deserts of Saudi Arabia. These manufacturing facilities will be powered by solar, and fed with ocean water and desert sand as inputs – with solar modules and desalinated water as output.
The global vertical integration of the PV tracker industry is accelerating, as players seek to build organizations that can provide manufacturing and support in multiple markets simultaneously. These partnerships tend to connect intellectual property assets with global manufacturing capability and construction and engineering teams that have the financial wherewithal to pursue international markets. The trend also is driving product line expansion, as in the case of Nextracker’s offering of energy storage as an integrated part of its tracker design.
Off- grid renewable energy assets for the mining sector are enjoying growing popularity, though this market is still largely untapped, comprising a few dozen flagship projects. Thomas Hillig, an expert in off-grid solar systems, spoke to pv magazine and believes that, in the end, it will be in the interest of mining companies to switch.
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