United Kingdom

Brexit paralysis and lack of incentives leave community energy facing uphill struggle in the UK

The future benefits of technology such as smart meters and the associated aggregation of small scale generation are not being adequately rewarded, support for solar and wind is being cut off and parliament is fixated solely on one issue.

Wacker enters battery business with acquisition of 25% stake in Nexeon

The Munich-based chemical company has taken a substantial minority share in the British materials specialist to expand its silicon-based high-performance battery activity. The value of the transaction was not disclosed.

Discovery challenges accepted wisdom on organic PV

Researchers at the University of Warwick in the U.K. have made a discovery that could lead to new designs for organic PV devices. Their findings could open up a new range of materials for the electrode layer and bring low cost, flexible organic PV devices a step closer commercial reality, say the academics.

ABB and Fimer respond to UK criticism of products and customer service

The inverter businesses have responded to the letter published by the UK Solar Trade Association which was critical of the former’s products and customer service record.

RES battery prevented complete blackout in the UK

On August 9, a thunderstorm caused 1.5 GW of generation capacity to go offline within seconds in the U.K. The incident caused millions of households to temporarily lose power but the situation could have been considerably worse if not for the country’s battery storage reserves.

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ABB called out by UK Solar Trade Association over quality and customer support

The STA has warned Italian company Fimer, which is set to acquire Swiss company ABB’s inverter business, it will have to honor customer service commitments made to its British members, and voiced fears related to historic quality issues with ABB inverters.

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PV cheaper than spot market electricity across Europe

The levelized cost of energy produced by large scale PV projects ranges from €24/MWh in southern Spain to €42/MWh in Finland. New research states that is already cheaper than the average spot market electricity price and that the figure for big facilities in southern Spain may fall to €14 in 2030 and €9 in 2050.

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‘Energy storage is not enough, a renewables grid needs flexible gas back-up’

The managing director of London-based energy infrastructure company Statera has told pv magazine a clean energy grid in the U.K. will require as much flexible gas plant capacity as battery storage.

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Octopus adds 300,000 customers and launches community energy JV

Another large scale transaction by the electricity and gas supplier has enhanced its standing in the U.K. energy market, with the business now counting more than one million customers.

PV for cooking

Traditional solar cookers concentrate sunlight on mirrored surfaces and convert it into heat. But this summer, Sunspot unveiled Sunspot Solar Electric Cooking, a new cooker based on PV technology. The system relies on two PV modules, a lead-carbon battery, an inverter, and an induction cooktop.

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