- Industry Roundup
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- PV Modules
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Qatari energy distributor Kahramaa has announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding granting approval for Qatar Foundation’s Solar Smart Grid Project Connectivity to be connected to Kahramaa’s main grid.
The global market for energy storage in PV is forecast to grow to US$19 billion by 2017 from just $200 million last year, according to research by IHS.
Renewable energy feed-in tariffs in Africa could boost its economy whilst combating climate change, finds a new study developed for the World Future Council.
The government of Kerala, India, has released a draft solar policy, effective 1 April 2013, having set itself a target of 500MW to be achieved by 2017 and 1,500MW by 2030.
Terna responsible for developing the national electricity transmission grid has received authorization to shut off distributed generation systems in case of emergency.
The Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) has released data stating that the new feed-in tariffs to be implemented in July will increase household electricity bills by 1.2%. METI estimates that consumers will pay an additional ¥87 (USD$1.10) per month.
As victor in the recent bidding for the contractor role, Conergy will again team up with Stadtwerke Trier to construct Mehring IV, a 2.2MW project to be based in the greater Trier region of Germany. The 2.2MW will consist of one 1.2MW plant beside federal motorway A1 and another 1MW plant located on former military terrain between Trier and Bitburg.
With an increase in the number of utility-scale PV power plants being built, as well as on a wider geographical basis, quality standards across the industry have come into question, according to TÜV Rheinland. In a breakthrough attempt to provide the highest possible standards from design through to commissioning system supplier, Conergy is the first to partner with the testing services provider to provide best practices in the PV power plant sector.
SunEdison has embarked upon a rural electrification program that will see the solar company install and manage distributed-generation solar power plants in villages in India that until now have not had access to electricity. Dubbed the ‘Eradication of Darkness’, the program’s upcoming phase will see the installation of the systems in 29 villages in the Guna District.
Swiss-based VHF-Technologies, better known under its product branding as Flexcell has stopped production of its flexible thin-film products and reduced its headcount to around 50. The move is designed to preserve cash, after being thrown a financial lifeline by Capricorn Capital to the tune of CHF8.5 million (US$8.9 million).
Forming over one third of the 604.89MW of PV power dedicated by Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi at last week’s India Solar Investment & Technology Summit (ISIT) event in Gujarat, the state’s 214MW Charanka PV park was also opened at the event and now represents Asia’s largest PV power plant.
Specialist PV system monitoring firm, Solare Datensysteme said that sales had reached almost €7 million in the first quarter of 2012, a 118% increase over the same quarter in 2011. The company guided sales in the second quarter of 2012 would be inline with the first quarter. The increase in sales was said to be due to sales success in a wider number of countries, including Canada and the US.
Joined by the Mayor of Grimmen and repeat private investor, Stephan Johannsen, Conergy officially connected its 8MW solar plant near Stralsund to the grid, making it one of the largest solar parks in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern to achieve such status. The company noted that all of the projects components were from its domestic manufacturing facilities. The project has been installed on over 20 hectare and uses around 35,000 Conergy PowerPlus modules from its Oder facility. It is expected to generate nearly 8 million kWh of solar power per year.
SunPower and GRID Alternatives have worked together for the past six years helping low-income families through volunteer hours, philanthropic gifts, equipment donations and sales. Recently, the two companies installed a rooftop solar system on a low-income home in San Francisco, a feat that both organizations note is just one of the many ventures they plan to complete together under their continued 2012 partnership.
Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) has revealed that it has commissioned a total of 13MW of grid-connected solar power plants throughout India for the current financial year. All of the projects that make up this 13MW total have been commissioned on an EPC basis, and include a 3MW plant in Raichur, Karnataka; a 5MW plant in Rajasthan; two 2MW plants in Maharashtra and over 1MW in the Lakshadweep Islands.
JinkoSolar has announced that it has connected China Guangdong Nuclear Solar Energy Development’s 18MW PV power plant to China’s grid. The plant, located in Dunhuang, Gansu Province in west China, consists of 76,000 of JinkoSolar’s modules on a plot area of 400,000m2.
PDI Global will provide an electric energy storage system to a social housing project in the Democratic Republic of Congo. With the intention to supply at least 300,000 homes with solar power, a contract with Korea-based Leo Motors has been concluded. Leo Motors will supply 20,000 units of e-Box to the project.
Having achieved the largest rooftop installation in the UK, Lightsource Renewable Energy has now branched out to the rest of the world. They have teamed up with SolarAid to provide solar power to communities in Malawi.
At the Solar Power International Expo this October 2011, technology pioneer OutBack Power Technologies will demonstrate their off-grid power conversion components. And Ameresco Solar, a leading energy efficiency and renewable energy company has reached an agreement to provide BP Solar International’s small area module (SAM) line of solar panels that range from 5 watts to 180 watts under the Ameresco Solar brand.
Fast disappearing are the days that PV modules can be marketed in isolation of a host of other ancillaries. The ever present pressure on module costs and prices diverts attention to system costs and where other savings can be made. Coupled to fierce competition throughout the supply chain - offering more than just modules for residential, commercial and utility markets - is the new name in the game.
Labelled the Alsace region’s second-largest PV roof system in the area, Gehrlicher Solar France’s 2.9MWp solar power plant in Hombourg near Mulhouse, east France was connected to the grid in mid-August 2011.
SAG Solarstrom said the 48MWp Serenissima photovoltaic project in northern Italy was connected to the grid on schedule to meet the Aug. 31 deadline. The plant, the largest in the company’s history, features more than 200,000 ground-mounted solar modules and will produce more than 64 million KWh annually, enough to provide energy to more than 14,000 households.
A 48MW project in Northern Italy worth several hundred million Euro is close to being sold by project developer SAG Solarstrom, after a 12MW section of the PV power plant was connected to the Italian grid via a new transformer substation specifically for the project. Italian Terna, which has already performed the technical acceptance and commissioning, is said to be planning to purchase the substation.
Parabel’s latest solar power plant in Hohenwulsch, Germany has been successfully completed and connected to the grid. The 1MW rooftop solar project, which was installed on a trade and logistics company’s roof space, has prompted Parabel to offer a 4.94MWp project portfolio with an annual energy production of 863kWh.
Solar Nation has installed and commissioned a 876kW solar power system on the rooftop of Sunham Home Fashions distribution center in New Providence, New Jersey. The 130,000 square foot system , which was designed, engineered and installed by Solar Nation, utilizes 3,575 SolarWorld 245W solar panels, two SMA American inverters and a Draker Laboratories web-based monitoring system.