North America

Goldman Sachs reaches $4 billion in renewable investment potential

Goldman Sachs Renewable Power, a subsidiary of the investment banking giant, has reached an equity pool of $4 billion, which will serve to expand on the hundreds of megawatts in portfolios the company has acquired in the last 12 months alone.

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Solar-plus-storage vs grid enhancement part II

Grid expert Andrea Mansoldo tells pv magazine how energy markets based on solar and storage are feasible as an alternative to costly grid infrastructure work. He says around 6 GWh of battery capacity may be a good alternative to building 1000km of power line or an AC 750 kV high-voltage line.

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The cooling effect of PV

Research from Finland’s Aalto University claims the residential cooling sector could sustain 540 GW of solar generation capacity if the world’s air conditioning systems were solar powered. Academics say synergies between PV and the cooling industry will become stronger as demand for the latter shifts nearer the equator, where seasonal differences in weather are less pronounced.

Teaming up on tandem performance

California-based Hanergy subsidiary Miasolé and European perovskite research institute Solliance have combined their thin film expertise to produce a 23% efficient flexible tandem device consisting of a semi-transparent perovskite cell on top of a flexible CIGS counterpart.

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Los Angeles says “Yes” to the cheapest solar plus storage in the USA

Los Angeles’ municipal utility has voted 5-0 to approve a 25-year contract with a 400 MWac solar plus 300 MW / 1.2 GWh energy storage facility, with the aggregate price of the electricity from the project at 3.962¢/kWh.

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Solar-plus-storage vs grid enhancement

Ontario’s Independent Electricity System Operator will implement a pilot project for a future electricity market based on PV, storage and smart power consumption. The utility says the project will be a cheaper, more efficient alternative to expanding grid infrastructure.

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Mini series: Social justice solar expands, trains, empowers

Erica Mackie is the CEO of Grid Alternatives, a U.S.-based nonprofit organization that has helped nearly 15,000 low-income families to go solar at no cost. It has also provided more than 42,000 people with solar education and job training. Mackie co-founded Grid Alternatives in 2001 while working as an engineer in the private sector, and since then the organization has become a driving force for access and equity in the PV industry.

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Food crops do better in the shade of solar panels

Another study has highlighted the advantages of combining solar with agriculture. According to the paper, growing chiltepin pepper, jalapeno and cherry tomato in dryland areas of the U.S. under the shade of PV modules is not only possible, but can lead to a better harvest.

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Coating could lead to commercial lithium-metal batteries

A new coating developed by scientists at Stanford promises to bring lithium metal batteries ‘closer to reality’, by significantly extending their operational lifetime and limiting the occurrence of dendrites at the anode, which can cause short circuiting and fires.

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Canadian researchers have done the math on optimizing PV output

Mathematicians at Canada’s University of Waterloo who turned their attention to solar power have developed an algorithm they say offers better control over PV plant output. The researchers estimate the algorithm could improve the output of a 100 MW power plant by almost a million kilowatt-hours per year.

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