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US, Canada ramp up solar glass plans

With PV module capacity ramping up, glass suppliers have been investing in new solar glass production capacity. As in India and China, new facilities are popping up in North America, with unique twists to ensure competitiveness, such as using recycled material.

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Weekend Read: The fruitful search for other thin films

First Solar and its cadmium telluride (CdTe) technology dominate thin-film solar in the mainstream market. Valerie Thompson looks at the US-based business and the future of thin-film PV technology.

Rear-side passivation for 17.4% efficient CdTe thin film

Scientists in the United States investigated adding a layer of copper-aluminum oxide to the rear side of a cadmium-telluride thin film cell, finding positive impacts on carrier lifetime and efficiency. With further work, the scientists say, the discovery could open up new routes to higher efficiencies in CdTe solar cells.

Bifacial perovskite solar cells may become more eco friendly than crystalline ones

A US study has suggested the raised energy yield of bifacial perovskite devices effectively means they could have a lower environmental impact than conventional crystalline cells. The researchers considered single-junction cells with high and low bandgaps and similar, multi-junction devices with two and four-terminal structures.

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A dual-angle approach to building solar plants at higher latitudes

A research team in the US has proposed a ‘dual-angle solar harvesting’ method it is claimed could help PV developers optimize energy yield and land use. It is claimed the method would be particularly suitable for projects in cloudier climates and at higher latitudes.

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First Solar is sold out through mid-2021

The thin film PV maker has reported solid third-quarter results after the opening of its massive, 1.3 GW factory in Ohio.

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Hanwha Q Cells opens largest solar factory in the Western Hemisphere

The 300,000 sq ft factory in Dalton, Georgia has the capacity to produce 12,000 PV modules per day – 1.7 GW worth annually for panels able to produce the same peak generating capacity as the Hoover Dam.

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US energy storage market set to almost double this year

The solar-plus-storage combination is super-charging the deployment of batteries across the country and IHS Markit says the U.S. will become the largest market for grid-tied energy storage this year.

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First Solar is sitting pretty

The thin film PV maker reported solid year-end 2018 results, with future bookings extending out four years and the fourth of five Series 6 factories already online.

First Solar to build the biggest solar factory in the Western Hemisphere – in Ohio

The 1.2 GW factory will employ 500 workers. The new facility is expected to bring First Solar’s total capacity to 7.6 GW by the end of 2020.

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