The speed at which manufacturers are introducing changes from one product generation to the next is accelerating – currently, formats are scarcely available for more than a few months before another revised product is launched. But occasionally new module dimensions also bring new problems, be it in handling, plant design, or logistics. Ever-shorter product cycles and hastily launched record-breaking modules with capacities of 500 W, 600 W, or even 700 W are not always welcomed with open arms – especially by those who have to work with them, writes Martin Schachinger of pvXchange.com.
The solar industry typically sees itself as being supportive of the environment, humanity, and human rights. Even large Chinese PV manufacturers publish statements to this effect, particularly if they are listed on Western stock exchanges. But what do human rights have to do with the solar industry? What connections exist, asks Martin Schachinger of pvXchange, and how are they important to the future success of the European PV market?
Looking back at the past year, the renewables sector has seen two extremes. In Germany, disparities were triggered in part by the recently passed amendment to the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG). For solar PV in particular, the pendulum will swing in favor of installers of small systems in the near term, writes Martin Schachinger of pvXchange. For installations up to 30 kWp, the new law has cleared market barriers.