In Depth

  • schott

    Are the stars aligning for a boom in PV module manufacturer margins?

    Editors' Blog | By Mark Osborne - 01 July 2015, 11:51

    Recent reports of tigthening supply and falling polysilicon prices indicate that PV module manufacturers could be entering a period of improved profitability not seen for the last three years, writes Mark Osborne.

  • Chile, SunEdison

    Solar accounts for 1% of global electricity, how long will the next 1% take?

    Editors' Blog | By Tom Kenning - 29 June 2015, 11:01 | 15

    Solar energy now accounts for 1% of all global electricity demand but the next 1% will come much sooner. Tom Kenning investigates just how much quicker.

  • Drax power station, UK

    Solar versus coal in countdown to COP21

    Editors' Blog | By Ben Willis - 24 June 2015, 11:52 | 1

    As the COP21 climate talks in Paris draw closer, solar and coal are emerging as symbols of two very different energy futures, writes Ben Willis.

  • Don’t let ITC Become the speed bump on solar’s growth road

    Guest Blog | By Laura E. Stern - 22 June 2015, 10:05

    As the political horse-trading over the future of the US solar investment tax credit gathers momentum, Laura Stern gives three good reasons why Congress should extend it.

  • Power grid

    The utility role in maintaining reliability as PV increases

    Guest Blog | By Jacqueline Ashmore - 16 June 2015, 09:51

    As more and more distributed generation comes on to the grid, utilities will have to adapt their practices to accommodate it. Jacqueline Ashmore of Fraunhofer CSE looks at where the most action is needed as renewables become an increasingly unavoidable fact of life.

  • Intersolar 2015

    Intersolar Europe 2015: Five talking points

    Editors' Blog | By Andy Colthorpe,Ben Willis,Mark Osborne - 16 June 2015, 09:30

    As the curtain falls on another Intersolar Europe, the reporting team that covered the show for PV Tech dusts off the pretzel crumbs and reflects on some of the key takeaways from another four days of madness in Messe München.

  • PERC

    PERC – is it happening now or just another passing phase?

    Editors' Blog | By Finlay Colville - 15 June 2015, 09:31 | 1

    Modules using PERC technology were much in evidence at Intersolar Europe in Munich last week. But as Finlay Colville says, despite recent hype, PERC is not the only show in town.

  • Mining in the Congo.

    The uncomfortable choice with solar power and raw material sourcing

    Guest Blog | By Chris Berry - 08 June 2015, 09:58 | 3

    PV manufacturers are under increasing pressure to remove so-called conflict materials from their supply chains. But as Chris Berry explains, it’s not quite as simple as that.

  • Big solar in India

    100GW by 2022: Behind India’s big solar numbers

    Editors' Blog | By Tom Kenning - 08 June 2015, 09:00 | 2

    On the eve of an expected announcement by the Indian government detailing how it will reach its 100GW solar target, Tom Kenning looks behind the figures and asks if it can all be for real.

  • SolarPower Europe

    SolarPower Europe – A new start for solar representation in Europe

    Guest Blog | By James Watson - 05 June 2015, 09:21

    As Intersolar Europe prepares to open its doors in Munich next week, James Watson, CEO of Europe’s main solar industry body, explans why 30 years into its lifetime, the organisation has rebranded to better reflect PV’s changing dynamics in the continent.

  • Yingli Green

    Is 2015 the year of reckoning for Yingli Green?

    Editors' Blog | By Mark Osborne - 04 June 2015, 12:03 | 2

    Recent history has not been kind to PV manufacturers that climb the rankings chart to become the global leader. Since 2007 when the industry really started to breakout of being a cottage industry and scale production, Sharp began a slow fall from the top, Suntech and First Solar both had short stays at the top and more recently, Yingli Green. After two years as the leading PV manufacturer, measured by module shipments, the company lost the top spot to Trina Solar in 2014.

  • The second summer of new PV technologies - chances for cell and module production outside Asia

    Guest Blog | By Dr Joris Libal,Dr Radovan Kopecek - 27 May 2015, 11:51

    Radovan Kopecek and Joris Libal explore the prospects for producing new cell and module technologies in territories outside of the big manufacturing countries.

  • Jack Curtis, First Solar

    PV Talk: First Solar on solar in the Philippines coming of age

    Interviews | By Ben Willis - 26 May 2015, 10:31 | 1

    Earlier this month First Solar revealed plans for a joint venture to build commercial and industrial PV power plants in the Philippines. At the start of 2015 analysts tipped the Southeast Asian island nation as one of the emerging solar markets to watch in 2015. First Solar’s Asia-Pacific regional manager Jack Curtis spoke to PV Tech about why the Philippines is finally finding its way on to the world solar map.

  • John Grimes, chief executive of the Australian Solar Council

    PV Talk: What Australia’s Renewable Energy Target compromise means for solar

    Interviews | By Tom Kenning - 25 May 2015, 08:00

    John Grimes, chief executive of the Australian Solar Council, explains to PV Tech what impact the recent political compromise on the country’s Renewable Energy Target will have on its solar industry.

  • Yingli World Cup

    Yingli’s steady recovery fades against the industry’s brightest stars

    Editors' Blog | By John Parnell - 21 May 2015, 11:38

    Yingli has sought to sooth investors by pointing to its “gradual” debt reduction, but with many rivals enjoying a period of growth, how comforting is its argument? John Parnell spoke to Yinlgi CFO Yiyu Wang.

  • China solar

    China’s future solar ambitions – at home and abroad

    Guest Blog | By Frank Haugwitz - 21 May 2015, 10:43 | 4

    Frank Haugwitz explores the opportunities for China’s solar industry at home abroad as the country’s new five-year solar development plan is finalised and manufacturers look to expand their global footprint.

  • GTM Research solar analyst Adam James

    The rise of solar in Central America in 2015

    Interviews | By Tom Kenning - 21 May 2015, 09:42

    Some of the smaller players in Latin America’s solar market appear to be taking off this year, leaving some of the bigger names in their wake, according to the latest GTM Research forecasts. PV Tech spoke to GTM’s Adam James about the countries to watch in 2015.

  • Battlefield solar: Response strategies for Asian manufacturers

    Guest Blog | By Matthias Grossmann - 12 May 2015, 11:31

    With the spectre of trade disputes showing no signs of going away, Asian PV manufacturers need to develop effective strategies to cope with future anti-dumping and anti-subsidy investigations, says Matthias Grossman.

  • How changing WTO rules on China could sink trade duties

    Editors' Blog | By John Parnell - 06 May 2015, 12:28

    The solar trade rows have so far largely played out in the anti-dumping and anti-subsidy arena but a particular set of World Trade Organization (WTO) rules applied to China are set to expire, casting doubt on future punitive tariffs.

  • Indian prime minister, Narendra Modi

    Why the global climate hinges on India’s solar revolution

    Guest Blog | By Dr. Tobias Engelmeier - 04 May 2015, 06:30 | 2

    If India were to grow its electricity system based on coal as China has done, the results for the global climate could be catastrophic. Tobias Engelmeier believes this leaves the country with little choice but to go solar.

  • ITC sunset?

    A softer solar landing after 2016

    Guest Blog | By James A. Mueller - 28 April 2015, 10:54 | 1

    An extension and gradual phase out of the investment tax credit would help the US solar industry on to a more sustainable footing in the long term, argues James A. Mueller

  • JinkoSolar

    JinkoSolar no longer the R&D spending laggard

    Editors' Blog | By Mark Osborne - 23 April 2015, 09:04 | 1

    Major tier-one integrated PV manufacturer JinkoSolar significantly increased R&D spending in 2014, reaching a new annual expenditure record that coincided with average solar cell efficiencies also reaching new heights.

  • Mexico

    PV Talk: Mexico’s solar landscape

    Interviews | By Tom Kenning - 22 April 2015, 10:43

    Joint ventures involving Spain-based energy company Aljaval have received electric energy generation approval for eight solar power projects with a combined capacity of 220MW in Mexico. Javier Mas Abad, Aljaval deputy director, spoke to PV Tech about the strong future for solar in Mexico despite difficulties in gaining finance.

  • Solar irradiance map of Africa

    Crunch time for solar energy in West Africa

    Editors' Blog | By Ben Willis - 20 April 2015, 14:21 | 1

    Ahead of a two-day event focusing on West Africa, Ben Willis asks whether political leaders are prepared to take the necessary decisions to help solar energy fulfil its huge potential in the region.

  • Single crystal sphere created under the Avogadro project

    Silicon for solar applications: the path to perfection

    Guest Blog | By Til Bartel - 20 April 2015, 07:00

    Growing awareness of the advantages of using controlled quantities of impurities in solar silicon is closing the price gap between lower and higher purity feedstock, writes Til Bartel.

Publications

  • Photovoltaics International 27th Edition

    Now that the PV industry has unquestionably entered a new growth phase, all eyes are on which technologies will win through into the mainstream of PV manufacturing. PERC, n-type, p-type bifacial, heterojunction – all have become familiar terms in the ever-growing constellation of solar cell technologies. The question is which will offer manufacturers what they are looking for in improving efficiencies and cutting costs.

  • Manufacturing The Solar Future: The 2014 Production Annual

    Although the past few years have proved extremely testing for PV equipment manufacturers, falling module prices have driven solar end-market demand to previously unseen levels. That demand is now starting to be felt by manufacturers, to the extent that leading companies are starting to talk about serious capacity expansions later this year and into 2015. This means that the next 12 months will be a critical period if companies throughout the supply chain are to take full advantage of the PV industry’s next growth phase.

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Acknowledgements

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