Belgium

Varying capital costs favor wind over solar in Europe

Differing finance costs across the continent are likely to see wind-rich, high electricity demand nations such as Germany, France, Austria and Belgium forge ahead with renewables at the expense of countries with plenty of sun but where borrowing is expensive, according to a German study.

2

Perovskites meet the stability standard

European research group Solliance says its perovskite modules have passed three key industry standard reliability tests: Light soaking, damp heat and thermal cycling. The group said it is the first time perovskite modules of that size have achieved such results and represents a milestone in the technology’s move toward commercialization.

The year in solar, part I: New modules, flat-pack solar and inverter turbulence

The first part of pv magazine’s review of 2019 considers Q1, when solar early adopter Italy offered an optimistic start to the year by fleshing out its plans for PV but uncertainty still clouded the world’s biggest solar market. The potential for household solar installations to rocket the world over – helped by ever cheaper panels – prompted strategic decisions in the inverter market and analyst expectations were confounded as the cobalt and lithium price plummeted, bringing the EV revolution a big step nearer.

New app helps charge Tesla EVs when electricity is greener and cheaper

With its app already present in Belgium and the Netherlands, start-up Jedlix is introducing smart charging in France. The solution enables Tesla drivers to optimize their charging strategy.

1

Europe on track for decade-topping 16.7 GW of new solar this year

Trade body SolarPower Europe’s preliminary statistics suggest this could be the continent’s best year for PV since 2010, with capacity additions set to soar 104% year on year. Spain is leading the way with an expected 4.7 GW of new solar, followed by Germany, with 4 GW.

1

Europe approves €3.2bn to support battery R&D

The European Commission has approved use of funds given by seven member states to back Europe-wide R&D projects across the lithium-ion battery value chain, with the aim of potentially unlocking an additional €5 billion in private sector investment.

3

Commercial rooftops will lead renewables growth in the next five years

Although the International Energy Agency’s latest renewables report forecasts impressive solar growth there is still a nagging feeling it has produced conservative estimates and the emphasis on sharing costs with grid operators is predictable.

3

Belgium’s largest PV rooftop commissioned by ArcelorMittal

The €7.5 million project, built by Dutch energy provider Eneco, is intended to power operations at the Ghent factory of the Indian steel manufacturer. Arcelor’s employees were invited to participate through crowdfunding.

1

Essent takes over Belgian solar installer Aralt

The Essent business of German utility RWE wants to widen its clean energy offer for Belgian clients. Last year Aralt achieved a €5 million turnover.

French scientists try to uncover the secrets of black perovskite

X-ray analysis is said to have solved the mystery of how to preserve optical absorption in perovskite layers. Researchers say the discovery could help stabilize the material and speed up the launch of a new ingredient for PV research.

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