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Estonia

Eurostat figures confirm rise of renewables during Covid-hit 2020

While solar, wind and hydro generated 80 TWh more electricity last year than in 2019, coal and oil use fell in every EU member state, and Greek energy emissions fell almost 19%.

Monograin layer solar cell with 6.4% efficiency

The lightweight and flexible cell was built by Estonian researchers with microcrystalline powders. The device is claimed to be the most efficient solar cell fabricated with a semiconductor compound known as Cu2CdGe(SxSe1−x)4.

Ten-year renewal of Estonia’s renewables support program

New €450 million incentive regime needed to be approved under EU state aid rules.

PV-powered hand sanitizer wins Covid-19 hackathon

An ESA-backed hackathon raised the idea of turning end-of-life PV modules into hand sanitizers. The team that won the hackathon is now working to rapidly roll out the solution at scale to contain the Covid-19 spread.

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All-in-one device integrating a microinverter and optimizer

The so-called Optiverter is an all-in-one residential solution developed by startup Ubik Solutions and researchers from Estonia’s TalTech Power Electronics Research Group. The developers claim that the new solution can provide 30% more power than traditional microinverters under partially shaded conditions.

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Estonian renewables auction attracts 17 bidders

The winners in the Baltic nation’s first clean energy auction will be announced by June 20. With the exercise rated according to the expected output of the facilities allocated, the government has committed to procure 5 GW worth of facilities, from a total 16.3 GW offered by bidders.

New kesterite solar cell with 8.7% efficiency

Estonian researchers have developed a new monograin powder technology made of microcrystals, which can form parallel connected miniature solar cells in a large module. By replacing copper with silver in the absorber material, the researchers were able to increase the efficiency of the cells by more than 2%.

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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.

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Estonia launches competitive renewables auctions

With the market all but grinding to a halt this year after an incentive scheme expired, the government has launched a new capacity procurement system. PV could be a winner in the first auction round but, as of 2021, solar could face stiff competition from wind and biomass.

Rooftop PV has reached grid parity in main EU markets

Researchers have developed a high-resolution geospatial method of assessing the solar potential of all buildings in the EU and concluded rooftop PV could provide a quarter of the bloc’s electricity needs. The scientists say grid parity for rooftop solar has been reached outside eastern member states with cheap fossil fuel electricity.

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