Top 10 module suppliers of 2018

By Finlay Colville, Head of Research, PV-Tech and Solar Media Ltd.

This article reveals the top-10 module suppliers of 2018, based purely on own-brand shipped module MWp-dc volumes. For the past few years, we have sought to compile the top-10 module supplier list before the end of January (or at the latest before the Chinese new year). In practice, with the first two weeks of the year being a reset from any prior-year shipment rush or inventory clear-out, we end up having a couple of weeks to get the top-10 module supplier rankings done.

Top-10 solar cell producers of 2018

By Finlay Colville, Head of Research, PV-Tech and Solar Media Ltd.

Solar cell production in 2018 represented change on many fronts, but may be remembered as a year during which Chinese-owned companies made further strategic moves as part of the current Beijing mandate to position the country as a high-tech manufacturing global powerhouse. This article explains how this is having a dramatic impact on solar cell manufacturing outside the control of leading Chinese-funded companies, and what this really means in terms of solar cell technologies and industry-wide technology roadmaps during 2019.

Emerging market briefing

By Tom Kenning

Tom Kenning looks at the latest developments in some of the most promising emerging PV markets worldwide. This issue features Saudi Arabia, Colombia, Mexico and the UAE.

Turkey takes the winding road to solar success

By Ekin İnal; Chris Down

Turkey has around 5GW of installed solar capacity, but potential for much more. Ekin İnal and Chris Down explore the latest developments in Turkey’s solar market and the regulatory reforms that could help PV take a much larger share of the country’s energy mix.

Plugging the hole: How can solar fill UK nuclear’s void?

By Liam Stoker

When Hitachi suspended development of its planned new nuclear power plant at Wylfa in early 2019, many thought the news would blow a hole in the country’s decarbonisation plans. But as costs continue to fall, even the UK government, not usually considered to be renewables’ closest ally, has pointed to the technologies’ role in plugging that gap. Liam Stoker looks at what might be required.

Land of the rising shadows

By Tom Kenning

At the end of 2018 the Japanese government caught solar developers by surprise with a raft of punitive regulatory changes. Tom Kenning reports on the short- and long-term impacts these could have on the country’s PV industry.

Halting desertification in the Sahel with solar power

By Tom Kenning

Solar power is at the heart of an ambitious plan to tackle environmental degradation and poverty in the Sahel region. Tom Kenning reports on a programme that, if successful, could bring a multitude of environmental and economic benefits to a fragile part of the world.

The seller’s market

By Liam Stoker, Solar Media

Following years of frantic consolidation, the UK’s secondary solar market has begun to slow. Liam Stoker analyses what the future holds in store for the once-thriving market, and what’s next for long-term asset holders

Falling costs help solar thrive in the desert

By Paul Mansouri; Angela Croker

Solar in the Middle East and North Africa continues to flourish, with utility projects leading the way. As Paul Mansouri and Angela Croker of Norton Rose Fulbright write, the development of battery storage technology and a growing interest among large corporates in solar as an energy source will help the market to continue growing

Vietnam’s mysterious solar market builds momentum

By Tom Kenning, Solar Media

Concerns over Vietnam’s power purchase agreement have not prevented a huge number of project deals being signed. Tom Kenning weighs up what progress is being made in putting one of Southeast Asia’s most promising solar markets on the map

R&D spending analysis of 20 key PV manufacturers in 2017

By Mark Osborne, Solar Media

An analysis of R&D spending of 20 publicly listed PV module manufacturers in 2017 has been undertaken to replace Photovoltaics International’s previous list of 12 companies tracked over a 10-year period. A number of the original companies tracked have subsequently de-listed from stock markets and gone private, which meant that a broader analysis, including other listed companies was required to provide a good representation of global R&D spending trends in the PV wafer, cell and module segments of the upstream solar market.

Back to the drawing board: US utility market rides the wave of change

By John Parnell, Solar Media

Trade tariffs, technology changes, new suppliers and shifting timelines. US developers and EPCs are riding out challenging times. John Parnell looks at the scale of the upheaval and how module pricing and module technology changes are feeding into the day-to-day work of deploying megawatts

Indian solar policy clear-up muddled by safeguard saga

By Tom Kenning, Solar Media

The Indian solar juggernaut shows few signs of slowing down en route to its huge target of 100GW by 2022. But, as Tom Kenning, recent policy developments could create a few bumps in the road along the way

The ‘coming of age’ of UK Solar

By Liam Stoker, Solar Media

UK solar has defied a retraction of subsidies by finding ever more innovate routes to market. Liam Stoker analyses some of the most interesting business models to take hold as the UK emerges as a post-subsidy solar destination