Power Plants

October 19, 2010
Rocky Mountain Supercomputer Centers (RMSC) and Northrop Grumman have come together to introduce their maximizing and optimizing renewable energy (MORE) Power initiative. The new service is a technology that uses a laser-communications network optimization model by Northrup to help select the most effect sites for renewable energy projects. The MORE initiative will take worldwide wind and solar radiation data, which is collected by Northrop, and use it as a historical foundation in order to choose a site that will be the most productive for an alternative energy project.
October 18, 2010
Another CIGS thin-film PV manufacturer has garnered certification for its flexible modules. San Jose-based SoloPower has achieved IEC 61646 and 61730 approvals to go along with the UL 1703 it announced earlier this year, allowing the company to sell its rooftop-focused products in the U.S. and Europe. SoloPower claims to be the first among its peers to obtain both IEC certifications for its flex panels.
October 18, 2010
Analyst group NanoMarkets released a new report, which cites that new materials, such as metal foils, plastics, ceramics and composites, will show an increase in their importance for the substrate and encapsulation materials used for thin-film PV (TFPV). NanoMarkets claims that the materials will be used more frequently as the need to support flexible PV and the growth of flexible products for BIPV continues to accelerate. As a result, the TFPV market has the potential to reach US$1.3 billion by 2015 and US$1.8 billion by 2017.
October 18, 2010
Vanguard Energy Partners has landed a 7.6MW contract with the Somerset County Improvement Authority (SCIA) to build 31 solar power systems on local and county government locations in Somerset County, New Jersey. The contract includes a 15-year power purchase agreement and is considered one of the biggest public solar energy projects in the state.
October 18, 2010
Duke Energy announced the partnership it has built with Integrys Energy Services and Smart Energy Capital to build and finance distributed solar projects in the U.S. The collaboration will start with Duke Energy Generation Services (DEGS) and Integrys jointly owning rooftop and small ground-mounted PV solar projects, which will distribute electricity to investment-grade commercial, government and utility customers under long-term PPAs. Smart Energy will handle the development and financial organizing for the projects.
October 15, 2010
Newly-developed rotary target bonding technology will be employed as part of a €30 million investment by Umicore to expand production of rotary sputtering targets needed for thin-film PV deposition processes. The capacity expansions are to take place at all three of Umicore’s existing target manufacturing facilities based in Providence, RI, Balzers, Europe and Hsinchu, Taiwan.
October 15, 2010
Despite the Japanese Government’s concerns over the legality of Ontario’s ‘local content’ feed-in tariff requirements, Sharp’s tandem-junction thin-film modules will be used by SunEdison for two solar parks, totalling 18.5MW, in Norfolk County, Ontario, Canada. The projects (SunE Sky Norfolk I and II) are a joint venture between SkyPower and the MEMC subsidiary, which actually started construction in March this year and is expected to be completed before year-end.
October 5, 2010
(Updated) Integrating energy harvesting technologies into crystalline solar modules is fast becoming the latest trend, which promises lower BOS costs compared to bolt-on applications. With the number of companies entering this market mushrooming in 2010, Suntech has decided to collaborate with at least four such firms, Tigo Energy, National Semiconductor, Azuray Technologies, and Enphase Energy.
October 4, 2010
Etrion has now completed the previously announced definitive sale and purchase agreements to acquire the equity in the first two phases of the SunPower Montalto di Castro solar park, for approximately €49 million. The acquisition of the 20MW first phase of the project was completed in August and the acquisition of the 8MW second phase was completed at the very end of September.
September 16, 2010
Global solar inverter shipments are expected to surpass 23.3 million units by 2014, up by a factor of nine from 2.6 million in 2010, according to a new report from iSuppli Corp. Revenue will subsequently increase to US$8.9 billion in 2014, up from US$5.3 billion in 2010. This would result in solar inverters sales becoming one of the highest-volume ruggedized electronic systems sold, according to report author Greg Sheppard. Despite such soaring demand, the average price per watt for inverters worldwide will decline by 13.5% this year. In particular, Asian suppliers are trying to drive prices down with lower costs, Sheppard noted, even though they have been challenged to deliver bankability.

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