News

  • 100 Percent Renewable Powered Microgrid in Illinois Islands from the Grid for 24 Hours

    On Thursday, Ameren Corporation and S&C Electric Company announced that they had successfully conducted a 24-hour islanding test at the recently deployed Ameren microgrid in Champaign, Illinois. 

    Posted at 18 August, 2017 | Read more
  • An Eclipse Is Just What the US Power Sector’s Been Waiting For

    Turns out the solar eclipse, set to plunge parts of the U.S. into total darkness on Monday, will offer exactly what the power sector’s been looking for: a completely predictable stage for experiments.

    Posted at 17 August, 2017 | Read more
  • SolarReserve to Build 150-MW Solar Thermal Plant in South Australia

    A 150MW solar thermal power plant will be built in South Australia by global company SolarReserve. The Aurora Solar Energy Project located in Port Augusta, about 300km north of the South Australian capital Adelaide, will incorporate eight hours of storage or 1,100 MWh, allowing it to operate like a conventional coal or gas power station.

    Posted at 17 August, 2017 | Read more
  • NorthVolt Starts Biggest Fundraising for $4 Billion Battery Plan

    NorthVolt AB, the Swedish battery factory developer founded by a former Tesla Inc. executive, is planning to close its first major fundraising round this autumn, potentially drawing in 100 million euros ($118 million).

    Posted at 17 August, 2017 | Read more
  • How an Arkansas Co-op Used Solar Power to Help Retain a Major Employer

    An electric cooperative in rural Arkansas is finding that solar power is not only benefiting its members, it’s helped to keep a major employer in the community.

    Posted at 17 August, 2017 | Read more
  • London Solar Auctions Aim to Make City Greenest on Earth

    London Mayor Sadiq Khan said he wanted to try city-wide auctions as part of an environment strategy proposed to more than double the capital’s solar energy generation capacity by 2030.

    Posted at 16 August, 2017 | Read more
  • First Solar to Profit If Trump Slaps Tariffs on Panel Imports

    First Solar Inc. is standing on the sidelines of a trade dispute that could give its products a significant leg up.

    The U.S. International Trade Commission held a hearing on Tuesday regarding the request by Suniva for the U.S. to impose tariffs on imported solar panels. The petition alleges China, which accounts for more than 80 percent of global solar panel production, gives manufacturers unfair government support.  

    The commission is expected to make a decision next month, and a finding of harm could lead President Trump to impose duties as early as November.

     

    Posted at 15 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Parked Electric Cars Earn $1,530 From Europe's Power Grids

    Electric car owners are earning as much as $1,530 a year just by parking their vehicle and feeding excess power back into the grid. Trials in Denmark carried out by Nissan Motor Co. and Italy’s biggest utility Enel SpA showed how batteries inside electric cars could help balance supply and demand at times and provide a new revenue stream for those who own the vehicles.

    Posted at 14 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Combined Solar and Methane Power Plant Set to Open in South Australia

    A combined solar and methane power plant in South Australia is set to begin operating within days. In what’s believed to be an Australian first, the plant will channel thermal energy from solar panels and methane gas from decomposed garbage through a shared turbine inter-connector. 

    Posted at 14 August, 2017 | Read more
  • 4 Unusual Uses of Solar PV Technology

    It’s becoming more common to find solar panels on rooftops, but that’s just one of thousands of places where they are generating power. As costs drop and energy production rises, we expect to see many more places where solar technologies are put to work—providing unleashed, inexpensive electricity.

     

    Posted at 14 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Solar Eclipse Will Affect PV Generators Across US

    On August 21, a solar eclipse will obscure the sunlight needed to generate electricity at approximately 1,900 utility-scale solar PV power plants in the U.S. However, relatively little solar PV capacity lies in the path of totality—where the sun will be completely obscured by the moon—and the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) does not anticipate the eclipse will create reliability issues for the bulk power system.

    Posted at 14 August, 2017 | Read more
  • There Are No Glass Ceilings In This Solar Village

    Engineer, entrepreneur, builder, leader: who are you picturing right now? Actually, these titles are held by several incredible collegiate women who have leadership roles on the Solar Decathlon 2017 teams.

    Posted at 11 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Myth Busting Indian Solar

    Solar capacity has been growing at a jaw dropping pace in India. What is especially remarkable is the range of stakeholders that play a part in this story. The central government; national level policy makers; national and multilateral agencies; state level governments; central off-takers; state level Discoms; private developers taking equity risk; EPC folks; hardware suppliers; sources of debt finance; corporate customers; individual customers — the list is literally endless. 

    Posted at 11 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Do You have a Favorite Insurance? For Pharma, it May be Microgrids

    A large pharma company recently came to me to discuss energy supply and its need for guaranteed electricity.  The company had to take out expensive insurance to cover a power failure event that could interrupt their production line. Why is this a big deal? We’ve all lost refrigeration for a few hours.

    After talking with the company, it became clear that a power loss lasting only 1 minute can result in a major economic hit because much of the pharmaceuticals are made in large batches to amortize the costs, and increase production.  With a power loss, it’s not just a temporary interruption, it’s a lost batch.  And the market value of a lost batch can easily reach millions of dollars. 

    Posted at 11 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Green Power Still Tied Up with Red Tape in Macron’s France

    Some 80 days into Emmanuel Macron’s new job, Europe’s biggest renewable energy companies are still waiting for the French president to make good on campaign pledges to boost green power.

    Posted at 10 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Atomic Movies May Help Explain Why Perovskite Solar Cells Are More Efficient

    In recent years, perovskites have taken the solar cell industry by storm. They are cheap, easy to produce and very flexible in their applications. Their efficiency at converting light into electricity has grown faster than that of any other material — from under four percent in 2009 to over 20 percent in 2017 — and some experts believe that perovskites could eventually outperform the most common solar cell material, silicon. 

    Posted at 10 August, 2017 | Read more
  • 4.5-GW Solar Project in the Sahara Desert Could Supply Power to Europe

    TuNur Ltd. recently said that it has filed for authorization to build a solar power export project in the Sahara Desert that would supply the European market with electricity.

    Posted at 10 August, 2017 | Read more
  • To Solve ‘Duck Curve,’ Missouri Utility to Pay Bonus for West-Facing Solar Panels

    In an effort to better align solar-energy production with peak demand, the electric utility in Columbia, Missouri, has begun to pay higher rebates for new west-facing arrays than it will for those facing south.

    Posted at 09 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Alphabet's Green Energy Ambitions Hit Turbulence

    On May 16, Makani released a YouTube video. A camera pans on a T-shaped airplane, with wings stretching 85 feet holding eight small turbines and a tether connecting it to a tall ground station. The plane swoops into the air. It dips and soars, looping elegantly in circles that mimic a windmill, something it was built to replace.

     

    Posted at 09 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Notes from the Solar Underground: The Danger of Conjecture

    As with advice, conjecture is easy to give as typically the conjecturers, as with advice givers, have little at stake and sometimes much to gain. First and foremost, conjecturers gain attention, second but not necessarily second-most, if the eventual outcome falls anywhere in the vicinity of the initial conjecture, the giver gains credibility. 

    Posted at 08 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Utilities Shifting Away from Wind, Solar PPAs

    There’s a new model emerging for growth-starved utilities looking to profit from America’s solar and wind power boom. American Electric Power Co. is using it for a $4.5 billion deal that’ll land the U.S. utility owner a massive wind farm in Oklahoma and a high-voltage transmission line to deliver the power.

    Posted at 08 August, 2017 | Read more
  • The Section 201 Trade Case, Part III: Will Any Americans Benefit?

    I’m fairly certain that there is some American ownership of SQN Ventures and Red Lion Capital, and they would likely benefit from a decision in favor of Suniva. One person who stands to benefit is Jim Modak.

     

    Posted at 08 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Senate Restores Quorum at FERC, Confirms DOE Deputy Secretary

    Quorum has been restored to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, following the unanimous confirmation of Neil Chatterjee and Robert Powelson by the U.S. Senate.

    Posted at 07 August, 2017 | Read more
  • The Energy Sector Needs to Adapt to Millennials—Not Vice Versa

    As interns at Environmental Defense Fund, we’ve been tapped as resident experts on surviving on college budgets, social media, and all things Millennial. Research tells us Millennials are the largest living generation. So, as clean energy interns this summer, we’ve learned that gives us much power to change the game for the energy sector. But in unexpected ways.

     

    Posted at 07 August, 2017 | Read more
  • The Section 201 Trade Case, Part II: In the Hands of DIPs

    The 201 trade case is being financed and organized by Suniva’s “Debtors in Possession” or DIPs. These firms want their money back. The 201 trade case is a desperate attempt to do just that.

    Posted at 07 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Germany to Take on Tesla With Gigafactory Rival

    German executives are preparing to announce a new home for a lithium-ion battery plant designed to rival the output at Tesla Inc.’s Gigafactory. Terra E Holding GmbH will choose one of five candidate sites in Germany or a neighboring country next month to build its 34 GWh battery factory, Frankfurt-based CEO Holger Gritzka said in an interview.

    Posted at 07 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Cell Phones to Bring Solar Power to 1 Million Africans Living Off the Grid

    Fenix International, a San Francisco startup making solar power systems for people with no access to electricity grids, is expanding in Africa through a partnership with the continent’s largest wireless carrier.

    Posted at 07 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Researchers Develop Transparent, Flexible Solar Cells

    Imagine a future in which solar cells are all around us - on windows and walls, cell phones, laptops, and more. A new flexible, transparent solar cell developed at MIT is bringing that future one step closer. The device combines low-cost organic (carbon-containing) materials with electrodes of graphene, a flexible, transparent material made from inexpensive and abundant carbon sources.

    Posted at 07 August, 2017 | Read more
  • AES, AimCo Complete $853 Million Deal for Solar Company SPower

    AES Corp. and Alberta Investment Management Co. completed the $853 million joint acquisition of sPower from Fir Tree Partners Inc., in one of the largest clean-energy deals to date.

    Posted at 04 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Tesla Finishes First Solar Roofs—Including Elon’s House

    First the Model 3 electric car. Now the solar roof. In just one week, Tesla has challenged two distinct industries with radically new products. 

    Posted at 04 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Just Add Solar: Building Africa’s Largest Thermal-Solar PV Hybrid Power Plant

    Finnish technology group Wärtsilä is set to deliver a 15-MW solar PV plant in Burkina Faso — creating Africa’s largest thermal-solar PV hybrid power plant. The solar PV development will be integrated with an existing 55-MW Wärtsilä thermal plant (running on heavy fuel oil), to power IAMGOLD’s Essakane Mine, 330km northeast of the Burkina Faso’s capital, Ouagadougou.

    Posted at 04 August, 2017 | Read more
  • The Section 201 Trade Case: Suniva’s Tangled Web

    Late this fall President Trump is going to decide how to implement any recommendation made by the International Trade Commission in the Suniva/SolarWorld trade case.

    Posted at 03 August, 2017 | Read more
  • 3@3 on Solar PV: Trade Case, GMP, Smart Inverters

    Jenn Runyon, Chief Editor of Renewable Energy World and Paula Mints, Chief Market Research Analyst with SPV Market Research discuss three hot topics in the global solar industry for three minutes each. Today’s topics an update on 201, aka the fast-tracked trade case against China, Green Mountain Power's innovative off-grid program and how smart inverters could change the game for residential and commercial solar + battery owners. Check it out!

    Posted at 03 August, 2017 | Read more
  • IKEA to Offer Home Energy Storage in UK

    IKEA is expanding its solar homes partnership with London-based Solarcentury by making energy storage available to its customers in the U.K.

     

    Posted at 02 August, 2017 | Read more
  • Alphabet Wants to Fix Renewable Energy’s Storage Problem — With Salt

    Alphabet Inc.'s secretive X skunk works has another idea that could save the world. This one, code named Malta, involves vats of salt and antifreeze. 

    Posted at 31 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Blockchain Investment Fund Begins Initial Coin Offering for New PV Plants

    Energy-focused blockchain investment fund Solar DAO yesterday started the preliminary initial coin offering (ICO) for its two-stage crowdfunding campaign to raise funds for the construction of new solar PV plants.

     

    Posted at 28 July, 2017 | Read more
  • I Squared Joins Bidding for $4 Billion Equis Renewable Portfolio

    I Squared Capital, the infrastructure investment firm, is among suitors preparing bids for Equis Energy’s renewable power business, people with knowledge of the matter said.

    Posted at 28 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Michigan Program Finances First Megawatt of Solar, With Ambitious Goals Ahead

    A clean energy financing program in Michigan reached a milestone last month when it helped homeowners and businesses install 1 MW of solar energy across the state.

    Posted at 27 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Why We Need to Clean Up Mining if We Want a Renewable Energy Economy

    A massive open-pit copper mine might not be the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about solar power. But the construction of photovoltaic panels actually requires a wide range of metals and minerals to build. Nineteen, to be exact, including silica, indium, silver, selenium and lead. Most can be found or produced in Canada.

    Posted at 27 July, 2017 | Read more
  • SunEdison Sets Bankruptcy Exit With Nothing for Shareholders

    SunEdison Inc. won final approval for a bankruptcy plan that will leave what was once the world’s largest renewable-energy firm as a shell of its former self, with nothing for shareholders whose investment at one point had been worth about $10 billion.

    Posted at 27 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Energy Bill Could See North Carolina Join National Fight Over Net Metering

    Highlighting a set of rules that promote rooftop solar, last week the activist group NC WARN became one of the few in North Carolina to urge a veto of a controversial energy bill that cleared the state legislature minutes before a month-long adjournment.

    Posted at 26 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Rooftop Concentrating Photovoltaics Win Big Over Silicon In Outdoor Testing

    A concentrating photovoltaic system with embedded microtracking can produce over 50 percent more energy per day than standard silicon solar cells in a head-to-head competition, according to a team of engineers who field tested a prototype unit over two sunny days last fall.

    Posted at 26 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Environmental Groups Reach Conservation Agreement for 247-MW Solar Project in California

    Last week, Sierra Club said it joined Defenders of Wildlife, Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, and Panoche Valley Solar in signing a settlement agreement concerning the size and location of the planned 247-MW Panoche Valley solar power project in California.

    Posted at 25 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Peeling Back the Red Tape to Go Solar

    Going solar isn’t as simple as having panels installed on your roof. After you select an installer, the project needs to be permitted, installed, inspected, and interconnected to the grid. Most of these steps depend on local governments and utility companies, which means the process varies based on where you live. 

    Posted at 25 July, 2017 | Read more
  • India Initiates Dumping Probe Into Chinese Solar Imports

    India opened a probe into whether Chinese solar-equipment makers are hurting its domestic industry by dumping inventories and driving down prices to unfair levels.

    Posted at 25 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Illinois Explores Smart Inverters’ Potential to Strengthen Grid Reliability

    A federal judge recently protected Illinois’ Future Energy Jobs Act, which is expected to grow the state’s solar capacity to over 3,000 MW by 2030 — enough to power approximately half a million homes.

    Posted at 25 July, 2017 | Read more
  • UK to Invest $320M in Energy Storage R&D

    In a move aimed at powering its transition to a low-carbon economy with energy storage, the UK is set to fund battery technology research to the tune of £246m ($320m).

    Posted at 25 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Analysis: Ratepayers Foot the Bill for Utilities’ Push Against Rooftop Solar

    A recent story in the New York Times raised new attention to the role of the Edison Electric Institute (EEI) in pushing policies hostile to distributed solar.

    Posted at 24 July, 2017 | Read more
  • UVA, Dominion Energy and Coronal Energy Announce Solar Energy Project

    The University of Virginia continues to expand its portfolio of carbon-free generation and achieve sustainability targets with another partnership announced today with Dominion Energy.

    Under a 25-year agreement, the University will purchase the entire output of a proposed 15-MW solar facility in Middlesex County. The solar facility, developed by Coronal Energy, will be constructed and owned by Dominion Energy and will meet approximately 9 percent of the University’s electric demand.

     

    Posted at 24 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Tabuchi Electric Backs Ground-mount Racking System Provider Nuance Energy

    Tabuchi Electric, a solar inverter manufacturer based in Osaka, Japan, recently made a $3 million investment in ground mount racking system provider Nuance Energy.

    Posted at 24 July, 2017 | Read more
  • India's Blue Sky Pledge Gives Power to Country's Green Bonds

    Green bonds issued by Indian companies are gathering pace as the country’s ambitious target for renewable energy fuels interest from investors.

    Posted at 24 July, 2017 | Read more
  • 5 Reasons Why Drones Are Going to Work for Solar Asset Managers

    With the potential to reduce inspection times from weeks to hours, it’s no wonder drones are becoming an integral part of the solar asset manager’s toolkit.

    Posted at 21 July, 2017 | Read more
  • US Interior Department Scientist Speaks Out Against Reassignment

    I am not a member of the deep state. I am not big government. I am a scientist, a policy expert, a civil servant and a worried citizen. Reluctantly, as of today, I am also a whistleblower on an administration that chooses silence over science.

    Posted at 20 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Likana Solar Thermal Project in Chile Receives Environmental Approval

    SolarReserve yesterday said its 390-MW Likana concentrating solar power plant received environmental approval from the Chilean government.

    Posted at 20 July, 2017 | Read more
  • China Achieves 7.2-GW New Solar Capacity Milestone in 1Q17

    China has installed 7.21 GW of new solar capacity in the first quarter of 2017, achieving another renewable energy milestone with growth maintaining the same pace as during 1Q16. Of that total, 4.78 GW came from utility-scale solar, with the remaining 2.43 GW originating from distributed solar PV, bringing the country’s cumulative solar PV capacity up to almost 85 GW. 

    Posted at 20 July, 2017 | Read more
  • The Future of Solar Debated at Intersolar in Light of Trade Petition

    Intersolar and ees North America 2017 concluded its 10th annual event in San Francisco last week. The event organizer said attendees and exhibitors were optimistic, as they engaged in meaningful conversations about the best approaches for sustained market success, despite a year of industry consolidation and trade policy uncertainty.

    Posted at 19 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Next Level Design — New-School Solar Software Providers Take on the Incumbents

    The market for solar PV design software has opened up significantly in the past five years. New offerings have taken off in that time, and they range from fully integrated systems offering one-stop functionality, to niche services that are hyper-focused on one segment of the design process.

     

    Posted at 18 July, 2017 | Read more
  • 3@3 on PV (and RE): Intersolar, Trade Case, Communicating about Jobs

    Jenn Runyon, Chief Editor of Renewable Energy World and Paula Mints, Chief Market Research Analyst with SPV Market Research discuss three hot topics in the renewable energy industry for three minutes each. Today’s topics include takeaways from last week's Intersolar Trade Show; the solar trade case between the US and China and a discussion about to communicate job growth in the clean energy industry. Check it out!

    Posted at 18 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Solar Thermal Plants Aim to Keep Lights on at Night in Middle East

    Solar plants that supply electricity at competitive prices after the sun goes down are about to become a reality in the Middle East, according to one of the region’s biggest developers of power plants.

    Posted at 18 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Uncorking the Residential Solar O&M Market

    In the early days of solar, its proponents claimed that the technology was simple to install and did not require maintenance. Consequently, a significant number of early small solar installations were neither monitored nor serviced regularly. 

    Posted at 17 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Adapting to a Renewable-rich Grid: Businesses Embrace Building Management Solutions

    Transitioning to the energy landscape of the future is oftentimes distilled down to a rise in renewable power generation. But the reality is that myriad industries are evolving and contributing to the foundations of a cleaner future. 

    Posted at 17 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Renewable Energy Not a Threat to Grid, Draft of US Study Finds

    Wind and solar power don’t pose a significant threat to the reliability of the U.S. power grid, U.S. Department of Energy staff members said in a draft report, contradicting statements by their leader Rick Perry.

    Posted at 17 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Panasonic Joins Push to Put Photovoltaics on More Car Roofs

    Panasonic Corp. sees the future of solar on car rooftops. The Osaka-based electronics maker has started producing a 180-watt array of solar cells that can be fixed to the roof of an automobile.

    Posted at 17 July, 2017 | Read more
  • From the Editor: Digital Everything

    How many times do you hear about the future of energy, the next generation of power applications or the future utility business model? Like me, you’re probably getting a little tired of it. 

    Posted at 14 July, 2017 | Read more
  • FERC Chair Nominee Could Set Direction on ‘Significant Issues’ for Renewables

    President Donald Trump’s nominee for Chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) would be able to set policy and direction for “several significant issues that will impact renewables, including on interconnection, frequency response and wholesale market rules,” according to Ruta Skučas, a partner at Pierce Atwood.

     

    Posted at 14 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Fresh Designs in Tracking, Racking and Mounting at Intersolar NA

    This year’s somewhat smaller, but seemingly more intense Intersolar North America trade show held in San Francisco this week featured a wide array of innovative solar tracking, racking and mounting solutions. While offerings by new and old players from around the world include many fresh design and feature developments, here are a few of the standouts.

    Posted at 14 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Want Distributed Solar in Urban Areas? BIPV Takes the Lead

    The stars are aligned for a breakthrough of small-scale solar energy in urban areas. This could completely change the world, the planet's source of energy generation and save the environment.

    Posted at 13 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Campaign Launches To Tell Clean Energy Jobs Story: Site Visits, Turbine Climbs, Videos on Deck

    On Wednesday July 12 in San Francisco, U.S. clean energy organizations including American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), Wind Energy Foundation (WEF) and NEXTracker gathered to launch Renewable Energy Jobs Communications Campaign.

    This campaign steering committee, working in partnership with The Solar Foundation, Advanced Energy Economy and VoteSolar, will organize a series of approximately two dozen events over 18 months in targeted locations across the country to highlight wind and solar jobs and economic development. Leveraging manufacturing plant tours, solar plant openings, wind turbine climbs, trade shows, and other industry-related events, the group will gather stories and produce videos, photos and infographics and disseminate them widely through earned media and social media. 

    Posted at 13 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Warburg Pincus Invests $100 Million in India's CleanMax Solar

    Warburg Pincus, the New York-based private equity firm, invested $100 million in India’s largest rooftop solar developer CleanMax Solar, the company said in a statement.

    Posted at 13 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Federal Funding to Support 48 Projects Advancing Solar Technologies

    The U.S. Department of Energy yesterday said it will allocate $46.2 million for 48 projects as part of its SunShot Initiative. These projects are intended to develop innovative, early-stage solar power technologies, which are aimed at lowering costs and improving reliability and efficiency.

    Posted at 13 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Financing Energy Storage Projects: Assessing Risks — Part Two

    In many ways, energy storage projects are no different than a typical project finance transaction. Project finance is an exercise in risk allocation. Financings will not close until all risks have been catalogued and covered. However, there are some unique features to energy storage with which investors and lenders will have to become familiar. 

    Posted at 13 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Unraveling The Spider-web Of Solar Engineering, Procurement, And Construction

    With hundreds of solar engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) providers in the world, deciding who is going to build their multi-million-dollar solar farm, is not something developers take lightly. 

    Posted at 12 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Financing Energy Storage Projects: Assessing Risks — Part One

    Technological and cost breakthroughs are expected to lead to rapid growth in the number of utility and behind-the-meter storage projects. Industry insiders say the energy storage market in 2017 feels like the rise of the solar industry in the late 2000s. 

    Posted at 12 July, 2017 | Read more
  • LG Solar Prioritizes Ease-of-installation, Efficiency in Residential Solar Panels

    This week at Intersolar North America in San Francisco, LG Electronics USA (LG Solar) introduced new solar panels designed to make residential installation easier and improve product efficiency through design.

    Posted at 12 July, 2017 | Read more
  • New Intelligent Control System for Solar Plants Responds to Site, Weather Conditions

    Flex company NEXTracker yesterday launched TrueCapture, an intelligent, self-adjusting tracker control system the company says is a first for solar power plants.

    Posted at 12 July, 2017 | Read more
  • SolarEdge Launches First PV Inverter-Integrated EV Charger

    At Intersolar North America in San Francisco this week, SolarEdge Technologies, Inc. is unveiling what it says is the world’s first inverter-integrated electric vehicle (EV) charger.

     

    Posted at 11 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Stäubli, Power-Blox Partner to Provide Swarm Power Solution

    Stäubli Electrical Connectors and Power-Blox this week signed a strategic cooperation agreement to jointly offer energy storage and off-grid solutions.

     

    Posted at 11 July, 2017 | Read more
  • New TerraSmart Solar Rack Brings Landscape Orientation to Product Portfolio

    TerraSmart this week is unveiling at Intersolar North America in San Francisco its TF2 L rack with a landscape orientation.

    Posted at 11 July, 2017 | Read more
  • eGauge Unveils ‘Professional Edition’ Energy Meter

    Boulder, Colo.-based eGauge Systems this week unveiled its next generation of eGauge energy meters with the ability to measure DC and AC power simultaneously.

    Posted at 11 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Siemens, AES Form Energy Storage Joint Venture Fluence

    Siemens and AES Corp. today said they will form a new global energy storage company under the name Fluence. The companies said they will combine the AES Advancion and Siemens Siestorage energy storage platforms with expanded services.

     

    Posted at 11 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Smart and Getting Smarter: China's View of the Future of PV Power Plants

    As the private sector increasingly takes on the task of installing solar PV in China, growth is happening quickly. Last year China installed more solar capacity than any other country in the world at 34 GW, beating the US's 14 GW and Europe's 6.9 GW.

    Posted at 10 July, 2017 | Read more
  • MAPSearch Launches ENvision Solar

    Today at Intersolar, MAPSearch announced a new online mapping platform designed specifically for the solar industry.

    The company's flagship platform, ENvision, enables anyone to quickly locate, display, and analyze energy infrastructure using the same quality data licensed to its GIS customers. ENvision is flexible and customizable, and its assets can be searched, sorted, and displayed according to numerous details, including owner, operator, voltage, and more.

    Posted at 10 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Monitoring System from Solar Analytics

    Australian solar energy software provider Solar Analytics is exhibiting at Intersolar North America in San Francisco to showcase its solar and battery monitoring solution for residential and commercial rooftop solar PV.

    The company said that its monitoring technology can increase the energy yield of a rooftop solar system by over 15 percent, increasing the financial return of residential solar power systems, and driving increased solar uptake.

    “We’ve seen enormously high customer engagement levels with our easy-to-use solar monitoring solution,” said Solar Analytics co-founder and CEO, Stefan Jarnason.

    “Our software monitors the performance of rooftop solar PV and provides solar owners with their energy generation and use data. With data, Solar Analytics empowers everyday solar owners to navigate the changing energy landscape and take advantage of the enormous opportunities that come with new energy technologies including storage and energy trading.”

    Solar Analytics’ monitoring service provides solar monitoring for more than 14,000 solar households across Australia, USA and New Zealand.

    Posted at 10 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Energy Storage “Living Lab” at Intersolar Solar Winery and Microgrid Tour

    On Friday, this week as part of Intersolar North America, attendees will have the opportunity to tour the Stone Edge Farm Microgrid project, where engineers and students from around the world are researching how to build self-sufficiency and resiliency with distributed generation and storage assets for uninterrupted power to support all the farm’s extensive operations.

    SimpliPhi’s non-toxic energy storage technology is operational on the microgrid. The company is also exhibiting at Intersolar.

     “SimpliPhi was selected for its safety, efficiency, longevity and proven track record in the industry. SimpliPhi batteries are the only batteries in the Stone Edge Farm microgrid project that are installed inside a building because they do not require thermal control and mitigation to protect the warranty or safeguard against thermal runaway or fire,” said Craig Wooster, CEO of Wooster Energy Engineering, general contractor for the microgrid project at Stone Edge Farm.

     

    Posted at 10 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Ideal Power and Nextracker Team Up for Solar-Plus-Storage Products

    At Intersolar Ideal Power announced a new partnership with NEXTracker.

    Ideal Power will supply NEXTracker with its 30-kW SunDial storage-enabled multi-port PV string inverter, its 30-kW Stabilitipower conversion system, and a custom NEXTracker-exclusive 15-kW SunDial, which NEXTracker will integrate into its NX Fusion Plus solar-plus-storage product. The product will be deployed to various commercial, industrial and utility sites throughout North America.

     

    Posted at 10 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Awnings Enter the Solar Power Age

    The awnings that shield building entries and windows are about to experience a transformation that will light up the $2.5 billion awning industry, according SunModo, racking company introducing a new solar awning.

    The concept is simple: Replace traditional metal and fabric awnings with solar-power-generating panels that provide necessary protection from the elements while also replacing traditional electricity usage.

    Introduced by SunModo, the SunShield awning system features a durable triangular aluminum frame as structural truss and expands to a 35-degree tilt angle once installed. This compact triangle frame design accommodates both 60 and 72 cell solar panels, said the company.

    "We believe awnings are the next big frontier that will further accelerate the adoption of solar, which will reduce our society's carbon footprint while providing an elegant yet functional shield from sun, wind and weather," said Rick Campfield, CEO of SunModo.

    The SunShield awning system is available to professional installers and building professionals directly or through our distributor partners.

    Posted at 10 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Phoenix Contact Shows Off New DC/DC Solar Power Converter

    The new UNO Solar DC-to-DC power converter from Phoenix Contact connects directly to a solar array. The UNO Solar converts high voltages from DC strings to 24 V DC, eliminating the costs and hassle of trenching for combiner, re-combiner, and inverter control for anti-islanding applications.

    The UNO Solar accepts the 300 to 1000 V DC input generated by the array and converts it to electrically isolated 24 V DC/2.5 A output voltage. For higher current applications, the UNO Solar can be wired in parallel with the use of a decoupling diode.  

    The UNO Solar’s compact housing and high efficiency means it can be used in small control boxes, said the company.

    Learn more at Intersolar booth 9336.

     

     

    Posted at 10 July, 2017 | Read more
  • EcoFasten Solar to Debut Four New Systems at Intersolar

    EcoFasten Solar will present four new solar roof mount and rail-free racking systems to the solar industry at booth #9433, Intersolar North America in San Francisco, July 11-13, 2017.  

    • Rock-It System 4.0 is a rail-free racking solution for both composition shingle and tile roofing applications. The 4.0 is UL 2703: First Edition compliant, and offers a faster, easier installation than its legacy versions.
    • SimpleBlock-PV provides a variety of options through compatibility with any rack manufacturer’s connection points (L-feet, posts), and will fit any double-lock standing seam. With the addition of EcoFasten’s Mid-Clamp, the system becomes a rail-free racking system that was engineered specifically for standing seam metal roofing. The system meets and exceeds all known building codes and is UL 2703: First Edition listed.
    • SimpleRack SR-X°, a rail-free system for flat concrete roofing applications, is an ideal system for fast, easy fixed-position mounting. Straightforward components accommodate variable heights, so pipe boots and vents won’t be an issue. UL 2703: First Edition compliant.
    • Tile System Rail-Based, a more cost-efficient iteration of EcoFasten’s popular Tile Flashing System, requires no cutting, drilling or grinding of tiles, thereby reducing overall installation time. The system’s flashing replaces one complete tile, and utilizes our patented, watertight compression technology.

    Posted at 10 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Google to Purchase Output from Largest Solar Park in Netherlands

    Rotterdam-based Eneco last week said that Google has agreed to purchase all the electricity from Sunport Delfzijl, the largest solar park in the Netherlands, for 10 years.

    Posted at 10 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Array Technologies, Shoals Partner on Utility-scale Solar BOS Solutions

    Solar tracking provider Array Technologies said today that it will collaborate with BOS provider Shoals Technologies Group on structural and electrical BOS solutions for utility-scale solar.

    Posted at 10 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Engie Considers Building Solar Park in Chernobyl Radioactive Zone

    Ukraine is talking to one of France’s largest energy companies about building a giant, billion-euro ($1.25 billion) solar park in the uninhabited radioactive zone surrounding the abandoned Chernobyl nuclear reactor.

    Posted at 10 July, 2017 | Read more
  • How Remote is Too Remote in Remote Operations and Maintenance?

    As pressure to decrease photovoltaic solar power plant operating expenses, solar asset owners are looking for the best ways to find savings while avoiding risks to equipment performance and longevity. 

    Posted at 07 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Google's Parent Company Spins Out Geothermal Start-up; Raises $2M

    After years in stealth mode, Google’s parent company Alphabet X has spun out Dandelion, a company that provides geothermal heating and cooling technology to homeowners at affordable costs. The company said it raised $2M in seed funding — led by Collaborative Fund and including ZhenFund and Borealis Ventures — to start sales and operations.

    Geothermal heating and cooling technology uses the constant 40° to 50°F temperature of the earth to heat and cool homes and buildings. Systems use pipes that are buried in the earth below the frost line coupled with heat exchange systems (heat pumps) to circulate warm or cool fluid throughout a building, heating or cooling it, depending on the ambient temperature. The biggest obstacle to their installation to date has been the up-front cost, which can run as high as $50,000 or even more. 

    Posted at 07 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Tesla Wins Contract for South Australia Energy Storage Project

    Elon Musk’s Tesla Inc. has won a tender to supply what the billionaire says is the world’s largest lithium-ion battery to back up the state of South Australia’s blackout-plagued power grid, making good on a promise first made over Twitter four months ago to help solve the state’s energy woes.

    Posted at 07 July, 2017 | Read more
  • BlackRock Beats $1 Billion Green Power Goal With Second Fund

    BlackRock Inc. exceeded a $1 billion fundraising target for wind and solar investments for its latest global clean energy fund, underscoring investor interest in renewable energy amid policy uncertainty in key markets.

    Posted at 06 July, 2017 | Read more
  • How One Small US Town Will Save Millions with a Microgrid

    The little U.S. town of Sterling, Massachusetts is getting a lot of attention these days. Not only has the Sterling Municipal Light Department (SMLD) been winning awards for its new solar+storage microgrid, the town is also getting visitors from Germany, Japan, Norway and many other countries who want to check it out.

    Posted at 05 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Vattenfall Splits Wind Business; Creates Offshore, Onshore, Solar+Storage Units

    Swedish utility Vattenfall this week said it has split its wind business into three units comprising offshore, onshore and solar+storage services.

    Posted at 05 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Massachusetts Sets 200 MWh Energy Storage Target

    The Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER) last week established a 200-MWh energy storage target for the state to be achieved by 2020.

    Posted at 05 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Live Free or Die State Celebrates Energy Independence by Removing Net-metering Cap

    In late June, solar energy stakeholders in New Hampshire rejoiced when the public utilities commission (PUC) released new order effectively removing the solar net-metering cap in the state.  

    The new order allows all customers with systems of <100kW to receive a monthly excess export bill credit up to 100 percent of the energy and transmission costs and 25 percent of the distribution services. Customers will still be required to pay non-bypassable charges such as the system benefits charge, stranded cost recovery charge and the state electricity consumption tax on the full amount of their electricity imports for the grid. New customers with solar or small hydro will receive new meters that will measure both total imports and total exports. 

    Posted at 03 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Rural New York Building Gets Microgrid for Resiliency

    Ideal Power has teamed up with Azimuth Energy and Wright Architects to retrofit a building in rural New York with a solar-plus-storage microgrid for backup power during grid outages.

    Posted at 03 July, 2017 | Read more
  • China Issues First Allotment of Green Power Trading Certificates to 20 Renewable Energy Projects

    The China National Renewable Energy Center recently approved and issued the nation’s first lot of green power trading certificates to 20 renewable energy projects as a part of the country’s upgraded policies as concerns renewable energy generation, green certificates, and the green certificate trading scheme.

     

    Posted at 03 July, 2017 | Read more
  • Solar Paint Offers Endless Energy from Water Vapor

    Researchers have developed a solar paint that can absorb water vapour and split it to generate hydrogen — the cleanest source of energy.

    Posted at 30 June, 2017 | Read more
  • German Tenants Win Right to Generate Solar Power on Rented Roofs

    Chancellor Angela Merkel’s coalition is widening access to the solar power market for people who rent their homes in a move to boost green power’s expansion in an election year.

    Posted at 30 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Taxing Carbon — Letting Markets Work

    A new business-based climate advocacy group stepped into the CO2 spotlight this summer. The Climate Leadership Council took center stage with op-eds in the nation’s biggest dailies and a full-page ad in the Wall Street Journal. The topic: supporting a carbon tax to reduce CO2 emissions. Admittedly, a tax is not a new idea but it became newly important considering the stature of the group’s Fortune 100 corporate and political membership, including BP, ExxonMobil, P&G and Johnson&Johnson.

    Posted at 29 June, 2017 | Read more
  • CEO: US Solar Trade Case is a Job Killer

    There’s another solar trade war brewing and if the US solar manufacturing companies that have brought it to the forefront are successful, it’s estimated that up to $.78 per watt could be added to solar panel costs in the United States.

    For background, earlier this spring, bankrupt Georgia-based manufacturer Suniva filed a complaint about its inability to compete with cheap solar imports from Asia. In May, SolarWorld became a co-petitioner. The U.S. International Trade Commission should rule on the matter in September and send its recommendations to U.S. President Trump.

    Posted at 28 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Former SunEdison Solar Team Lands Funding for New Venture

    Summit Ridge Energy, a new solar company led by former employees of bankrupt SunEdison Inc., obtained funding to build, finance and acquire solar power plants across the U.S.

    Posted at 28 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Court Sides with FERC, Against Consumers and Clean Energy

    The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) approval of controversial new rules for America’s largest power market. We are disappointed because these rules unnecessarily funnel money from electricity consumers to fossil and nuclear power plants while largely excluding competition from reliable, economical wind and solar power and demand response.

    Posted at 28 June, 2017 | Read more
  • ACP-EU Cooperation Program in Higher Education Enhances Capacity for Sustainable Energy Engineering in East Africa

    The paradox in the African energy sector has been of increasing concern to stakeholders at various levels. Africa is energy-resources rich yet energy poor. Statistics of energy supply and utilization may best describe the conditions of energy access on the continent. 

    Posted at 28 June, 2017 | Read more
  • The Solar PV Industry Cosmos — Linking Cost and Physics

    In a competition between physics and finance (profitability), physics always wins. The smart money will always be on the side of physics. Understanding this dynamic may be the single biggest advantage in solar PV.

     

    Posted at 27 June, 2017 | Read more
  • 3@3 on Solar PV: Upsides, Downsides and Potential Challenges

    Today's topics include the good news recently out about solar's penetration into the U.S. electricity supply as well as the bad news that it's still such a small amount. Then we'll look at a serious FERC ruling that could start to chip away at progress.

     

    Posted at 27 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Electrify Europe Unveiled in Cologne

    POWER-GEN Europe today marked its 25 anniversary by opening a new chapter in the history of European energy industry trade shows. Today the show’s owner, PennWell Corporation, unveiled Electrify Europe, the world’s first event dedicated to the convergence in the power generation and transmission and distribution sectors.

    Posted at 27 June, 2017 | Read more
  • The $123 Billion Question: Are Green Bonds Really Working?

    The green-bond market has boomed on the allure of investments that help the environment. Now, the industry is trying to show that the reality matches these ambitions. Advisers and rating companies are starting to track the environmental effect of projects funded by green bonds, such as the impact on air pollution.

    Posted at 27 June, 2017 | Read more
  • US Conference of Mayors Approves Resolution Calling for 100 Percent Renewable Energy in American Cities

    The U.S. Conference of Mayors in Miami yesterday approved a resolution calling for 100 percent renewable energy in cities across the U.S. by 2035.

    Posted at 27 June, 2017 | Read more
  • CSP Eyes Strong Growth with Thermal Energy Storage to Compete Against PV

    Concentrating solar power (CSP) has existed since 1866, but for the last couple of decades, photovoltaic (PV) has been the dominant solar technology. Now with technological advancements and energy storage, CSP is poised to make a significant comeback. 

    Posted at 26 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Solar Now Third Largest Renewable Source of Electricity in US

    In April, solar reached a new milestone, providing more than 2.3 percent of U.S. electrical supply, according to the latest issue of the U.S. Energy Information's (EIA) Electric Power Monthly, with data through April 30, 2017. Consequently, solar has now moved into third place among renewable sources — behind hydropower and wind but ahead of biomass and geothermal.

    Posted at 26 June, 2017 | Read more
  • New York Moves to Establish Energy Storage Procurement Target for 2030

    The New York State Legislature has sent to Gov. Andrew Cuomo companion bills that would lead to the development of an energy storage procurement target for the state.

    Posted at 26 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Solar LCOE, a Data Mining and Fact Driven Challenge

    Fully identifying and understanding real life cycle solar PV costs creates a challenge; while not addressing those costs in detail accurately and dramatically, increases project risk. The probability that one can effectively cut costs without clearly understanding what the underlying costs are, is exceptionally low.

    Posted at 23 June, 2017 | Read more
  • NY Green Bank’s Clean Tech Investments Reach $346 Million

    NY Green Bank’s investment portfolio reached $346.1 million in 1Q17, an achievement that is expected to ensure a total investment of about $1 billion into New York’s clean energy market, according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office.

     

    Posted at 23 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Panel Makers Surge After Trump Proposes Solar on Border Wall

    Shares of solar manufacturers rose sharply Thursday after President Donald Trump told supporters that mounting solar PV panels atop his proposed Mexican border wall would allow the project to pay for itself.

    Posted at 23 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Researchers Win DOE Grant for Solar Communications Security System

    A three-year study to develop a generic cybersecurity system for monitoring communications between distributed energy resource generators — including solar — and the grid is being developed by the Coordinated Science Laboratory (CSL) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, under a $900,000 U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) grant.

     

    Posted at 22 June, 2017 | Read more
  • The Many Fates of Former Solar Decathlon Houses

    Compelling. That’s what the stories behind the Solar Decathlon represent to me. Normally, I am focused on the current competition — working with the university teams and our partners to host the Energy Department’s largest public event showcasing student-built solar houses. 

    Posted at 22 June, 2017 | Read more
  • The Global Transition to Renewable Energy — Can the Caribbean Lead the Way? Part 2: The Challenges

    With the confluence of positive factors described in Part 1 of this article, why has the pace of adoption of renewables not been more rapid Indeed, there has been progress, but it has been slow and uneven, depending on the island. There are several reasons for this.

    Posted at 21 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Australian Firm Issues Tender for 640 MWh of Energy Storage Services

    Brisbane, Australia-based Lyon Group yesterday said it is seeking interest for contracts to cover up to 640 MWh of storage capacity across Victoria, South Australia and Queensland.

    Posted at 21 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Changing How Solar Power Rolls

    Traditional solar panels used to power satellites can be bulky with heavy panels folded together using mechanical hinges. An experiment that recently arrived at the International Space Station will test a new solar array design that rolls up to form a compact cylinder for launch with significantly less mass and volume.

    Posted at 20 June, 2017 | Read more
  • India Solar Tariffs: Part 2 — Dude, Where's My Return?

    Any analysis of solar returns has to be first de-linked from return expectations for thermal. Rather than chip away at a thermal derived returns benchmark

    Posted at 20 June, 2017 | Read more
  • The Global Transition to Renewable Energy — Can the Caribbean Lead the Way? Part 1: The Potential

    The Caribbean depends on imported oil for approximately 90 percent of its energy needs; the exception is Trinidad and Tobago, which has its own source of oil and natural gas. Although the world currently is benefitting from a relatively low cost of oil, 

    Posted at 20 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Listen Up: Tesla Solar Roof Tiles — Customer and Installer Perspectives

    There’s no doubt in my mind that the home of the future will be solar powered. Intuitively it would be great if the roofing material provided that solar power.

    Posted at 20 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Nevada RPS, Community Solar Bills Vetoed; Net Metering Reinstated

    Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval vetoed two bills last week that would have increased the state’s renewable energy standard and promoted community solar programs.

    Posted at 19 June, 2017 | Read more
  • European Energy Trading Firms to Test Blockchain Technology

    A trial of blockchain-based peer-to-peer trading will be undertaken this year in the European wholesale energy market. Swedish power company Vattenfall on June 7 said that its Business Area Markets unit has joined 22 other European energy trading firms to conduct the trial.

    Posted at 19 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Pakistan’s Renewables Industry — Net Metering, Grid Stability, and Active Actions

    The renewable energy industry in Pakistan is surviving and evolving every day without any major government support in form of policies, such as tax rebates and subsidies.

    Posted at 19 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Apple Issues a Second Green Bond to Finance Clean Energy

    Apple Inc., which issued the biggest green bond ever sold by a U.S. corporation last year to finance projects fighting global warming, is doing it again.

    Posted at 19 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Notes from the Solar Underground: At the Intersection of Innovation, Technology and Market, the Market Decides

    Whether the market makes a flawed decision or not, the market is always the decider, and whether its decisions are based on price, personal beliefs

    Posted at 16 June, 2017 | Read more
  • The Future of Energy Services Highlighted on 2017 Technology Pioneers List

    Companies with product offerings that will drive the future of energy services were among the 30 start-ups and scale-ups featured on the World Economic Forum’s 2017 Technology Pioneers list released this week.

    Posted at 16 June, 2017 | Read more
  • US Paris Pull-Out Sparks Discord and Dialogue for G7 Environment Ministers

    The environment ministers of the world’s seven most powerful industrialized economies met in Bologna this week. This was the first G7 gathering since U.S. President Donald Trump announced his plan to pull out of the Paris Agreement. 

    Posted at 15 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Australia Considers Draft Standard for Onsite Energy Storage

    The nonprofit Standards Australia this week released for consultation a draft voluntary standard for onsite battery systems. The standard, which was prepared jointly by Australian and New Zealand stakeholders, includes provisions for

    Posted at 15 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Renewables to Grab $7 Trillion of Global Power Investment, Says BNEF

    Renewables will account for almost three quarters of global investment in power generation between now and 2040, according to a new report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

    Posted at 15 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Posted at 15 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Recently Passed Legislation to Open Up PACE Financing in Illinois

    Illinois could get a PACE program for financing energy efficiency and renewable energy in commercial, industrial and multi-family buildings if the governor signs a bill passed overwhelmingly by the state legislature last month.

    Posted at 14 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Tokyo May Soon Get Wind Power From Asia Super Grids

    The lights of the high-end boutiques and bars of Tokyo’s Ginza neighborhood may someday be powered by wind farms or coal burned more than 1,700 miles away (2,700 kilometers) in Mongolia, electricity zipping over ultra-high voltage lines across deserts and under seas.

    Posted at 13 June, 2017 | Read more
  • May's Bid to Keep UK Lights on Harder After Election Loss

    The U.K.’s search for 100 billion pounds (US$127 billion) to maintain electricity supplies is likely to become tougher after the Conservative government lost its parliamentary majority in an election last week.

    Posted at 13 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Associations Urge Congress to Oppose $1.7BN DOE Budget Cut

    A letter signed today by five renewable energy associations urges Congress to oppose the $1.7 billion cut to the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) FY18 budget proposed by the Trump Administration.

    Posted at 13 June, 2017 | Read more
  • India Solar Tariffs — Irrational or Misunderstood?

    I recently came across an article highlighting subdued M&A activity in the Indian solar space as it appears buyers are now reluctant to acquire older projects with high tariffs due to perceived curtailment and/or tariff revision risk! I guess this means the latest solar tariffs may not be so irrational after all.

    Posted at 13 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Listen Up: The Solar Coaster

    Energy and environmental trends are our friends when it comes to the long-term future of the solar industry. For more about the next dip on the Solar Coaster, Listen Up to the Energy Show on Renewable Energy World.

    Posted at 12 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Solar Decathlon Teams Enter Construction Phase; Readying for October Competition

    The U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2017 is coming to Denver in October, and teams are building their entries to be ready for the competition.

    Posted at 12 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Hawaii Enacts Law Expanding Climate Strategies in Alignment with Paris Agreement

    In a first for U.S. states, Hawaii Gov. David Ige last week signed two bills that codify commitments and goals of the Paris Agreement.

    Posted at 12 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Cooking Microgrids: The Case for Application-specific Power Networks

    Thanks to the virtuous confluence of technical and business forces, and driven by entrepreneurial startups, application-specific microgrids are coming. In common understanding, a microgrid is a smaller version of the existing macro-grid, and it delivers the same electricity as the latter does.

    Posted at 09 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Nevada Governor Signs Bill Providing Legal Recognition of Blockchain

    Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval this week signed a billed that provides legal recognition of blockchain in satisfying the requirements for written records, specifically contracts.

    Posted at 09 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Active Network Management Enables Addition of 8.5 MW of Renewables to Shetland Islands Grid

    A five-year trial on Scotland’s Shetland Islands has shown that a system of demand-side management, large-scale energy storage and monitoring and control systems — together called active network management (ANM) — has allowed the addition of about 8.5 MW of renewables to the islands’ grid.

    Posted at 09 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Recycled EV Batteries Will Be Paired with Residential Solar in UK Trial

    A new trial in the UK will explore the performance of recycled EV batteries in residential solar+storage systems. U.K.-based Powervault this week said it reached an agreement to reuse Renault’s EV batteries in 50 trail units at homes of customers who already have solar installed. 

    Posted at 09 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Net Metering Poised for Comeback in Nevada; Solar Providers Look to Return to State

    Following passage earlier this week of a bill to restore net metering in Nevada, Sunrun said it will re-enter the state’s solar market. AB 405 passed Nevada’s Assembly and Senate and now is awaiting Gov. Brian Sandoval’s signature.

    Posted at 08 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Ten Clean Energy Stocks For 2017: First Quarter Earnings

    In the two months since the last update, most of the stocks in my Ten Clean Energy Stocks model portfolio have reported first quarter earnings. There were few surprises, and those were mostly pleasant ones, allowing the model portfolio to add to its gains, and pull a little farther ahead of its benchmark.

    Posted at 08 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Vietnam Conglomerate Plans $1 Billion Solar Parks Project

    Vietnam’s TTC Group, a sugar, energy, real estate and tourism conglomerate, is planning to spend as much as $1 billion on an ambitious plan to build one of the country’s largest portfolios of solar projects in an effort to capitalize on the nation’s growing power needs.

    Posted at 08 June, 2017 | Read more
  • 3@3 on Solar PV: Trade Case, Paris Agreement, Climate Change

    Jenn Runyon, Chief Editor of Renewable Energy World and Paula Mints, Chief Market Research Analyst with SPV Market Research discuss three hot topics in the global solar industry for three minutes each.

    Posted at 07 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Letter from the Editor: Innovation in Renewables

    I’ve been thinking a lot about innovation this month. I wrote about how wind construction companies are innovating to lower costs in our cover story and talked about that in my video above.

    But I’m also thinking about BIG innovation — the world-changing kind. In April, I attended the Powering Progress Together (PPT) forum, hosted by Shell and the Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI). Visionaries from both organizations presented their views of the future of energy.

    Cho Khong, Chief Political Analyst for Shell, described two views of the future: one shows gas as the primary energy source with wind and solar also supplying large shares of energy while another shows solar power is the primary energy source by the 2030s.

    Amory Lovins, Chief Scientist with RMI sees only an all-renewable future, dominated by distributed solar and wind.

    Each visionary began his presentation with photos taken in the early 1900s. In only 13 years, the Easter Parade in New York City went from one filled with horses and buggies to one in which there were no horses of any kind. That means that those buggy manufacturers had only a short time to abandon their business as usual scenarios, retool and become automakers. If they waited too long, they were beat but if they jumped in too early, the market may not have been ready for them.

    As Lovins stated, the pioneers have the arrows in their backs, the settlers get the land. It may be time for major fossil fuel companies to start ensuring their companies are ready for a future with wind and solar as a primary energy source and EVs dominating the transportation sector. If they are not already doing that, it may be too late.

     

    Posted at 07 June, 2017 | Read more
  • The Opportunity of the Commons

    The theory of the tragedy of the commons holds that those driven solely by self-interest will act to the detriment of the common good. One simple illustration is the depletion of fisheries by unregulated overfishing. Our industrial history also demonstrates the principle. Capitalism’s quest for maximized profit made industry race to the bottom, seeking places that allowed production at its lowest immediate cost. Now, those economies that prospered from that race are recovering from its impacts. The opportunity in the commons is global recognition of the competitive advantage in efficiency. 

    Posted at 07 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Solar Energy Empowers Villagers and Saves Wildlife in Nepal

    This fall, rangers protecting rhinos, tigers and other endangered wildlife in Nepal's famous Chitwan National Park will get a solar energy system that will light and power an isolated ranger outpost deep in the jungle.

    Posted at 07 June, 2017 | Read more
  • The Race to the Bottom — Accelerating PV Insolvency

    The myth of solar PV competition is both subtle and blatant. “Competition is good for the PV industry” rings hollow based on today’s market. If that is true, then what are the reasons and can something be done about it. There just may be a difference between good healthy competition and organizational consuming unhealthy competition.

    Posted at 07 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Greensmith, E.On, Tucson Electric Power Complete Energy Storage Project

    Energy storage software and services company Greensmith Energy, E.On Climate and Renewables, and Tucson Electric Power inaugurated the Iron Horse Battery Energy Storage Project

    Posted at 06 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Making Sense of Demand Charges: What Are They and How Do They Work?

    Two commercial buildings, a factory and an aerospace research facility, both consumed 40,000 kWh of energy in January 2017. However, their energy consumption patterns were very different. The factory maintained a uniform energy consumption of 1,333 kWh per day, and for no given period did their power draw exceed 56 kW.

    Posted at 06 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Guam Power Authority Looks to Energy Storage to Reduce Power Outages

    Guam Power Authority (GPA) has chosen to install two energy storage systems that will help reduce intermittent power outages that Guam has been experiencing from net metering penetration and utility-scale renewable energy projects.

     

    Posted at 05 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Technical Masking in Solar PV — What Is Really Behind the Curtain?

    One of the most vexing issues in the PV industry today is that of technical masking. Masking is all about accurately identifying technical issues, finding what is behind the curtain, the unseen, what is real but not being measured, and what is taking place that is not being accounted for.

    Posted at 05 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Italy Switches on Five New Subsidy-Free Solar Power Plants

    Octopus Investments Ltd. started generating power from five subsidy-free solar plants in Italy in the latest sign that clean-energy can be profitable without government support.

    Posted at 05 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Listen Up: Remember the EPA

    In a world full of alternative facts, it should come as no surprise that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) no-longer stands for Protecting the Environment. On Jan. 20, only a day before millions of Americans took to the streets to march in support of climate action, the EPA made major changes to its website.

    Posted at 05 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Austin Energy Chooses Stem for Aggregated Energy Storage

    Energy storage services firm Stem Inc. is developing an aggregated fleet of customer-sited energy storage operating in Texas.

    Posted at 02 June, 2017 | Read more
  • California Senate Approves Bill for Energy Storage Rebate Program

    The California Senate on Wednesday passed a bill that would create a 10-year rebate program for the state’s local energy storage market. According to a bill analysis from the California legislature, SB 700 directs the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), by Dec. 1, 2018, to establish a program called the Energy Storage Initiative (ESI) to provide rebates to customers of California’s investor-owned utilites for the installation of customer-sited energy storage systems that are dispatch capable to achieve market transformation.

    Posted at 02 June, 2017 | Read more
  • US Residential Solar Market Slides for the First Time in 16 Years

    The U.S. residential solar market is projected to contract in 2017 after at least 16 straight years of growth, reflecting a shift in sales strategies by some major installers and increasing pressure from utilities to adjust incentives.

    Posted at 02 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Trump Says US Is ‘Getting Out’ of Paris Agreement, But Will Negotiate a Fair Deal

    In a statement today from the White House, President Donald Trump fulfilled his campaign promise to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Agreement. “We’re getting out, but we’ll start to negotiate, and we’ll see if we can make a deal that’s fair,” he said.

     

    Posted at 01 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Are Multilateral Development Banks Supporting a Low-Carbon Future?

    More than 190 countries committed under the Paris Agreement on climate change to hold global average temperature rise to well below 2 degrees Celsius. The multilateral development banks (MDBs) will play a crucial role in enabling countries to finance the infrastructure and energy systems of the future. 

    Posted at 01 June, 2017 | Read more
  • Musk Joins CEOs Calling for US to Stay in Paris Climate Deal

    As President Donald Trump nears a final decision on the Paris climate agreement, top corporate executives are mounting a last-minute push aimed at persuading the president that the U.S. has more to lose from abandoning the accord.

    Posted at 31 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Smart Solar Ensures Services at Remote Communities across the World

    The Internet of Things (IoT) has emerged as one of the hottest topics, covering home security systems to refrigerators that tell you when to buy milk. The technology, which extends connectivity and computing capability to devices that are not normally considered computers and allows these devices to generate and exchange data with minimal human intervention, is now integrated into off-grid solar, creating “smart” solar.

    Posted at 30 May, 2017 | Read more
  • UK Breaks Solar Record; Generates 24 Percent of Power from Solar

    On Friday, May 26, on what was expected to be one of the hottest days of the year, solar panels in the UK generated a record amount of power, enough to meet almost 25 percent of demand. This is according to data compiled by National Grid Plc and Sheffield University.

    At noon London-time, 8.75 GW of power was being generated by the solar PV, breaking a previous record of 8.49 GW, overtaking nuclear power in the country.  

    Posted at 26 May, 2017 | Read more
  • SolarWorld Joins Case Seeking U.S. Duties on Cheap Solar Imports

    SolarWorld AG’s U.S. unit joined a trade case asking the federal government to impose duties on low-cost imports that have fueled a nationwide boom in solar installations.

    The company, which filed a separate trade complaint that led to U.S. tariffs on Chinese panels in 2012, become a co-petitioner Thursday in Suniva Inc.’s case before the U.S. International Trade Commission. Suniva, a bankrupt Georgia manufacturer, initiated the complaint in April, saying it’s impossible to compete with cheap imports, predominately from Asia.

    Posted at 26 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Neoen Picks Schneider Electric To Support 750 MW of Solar on Three Continents

    French IPP Neoen, and energy management company Schneider Electric last week signed a 750 MW Conext SmartGen multi-year framework agreement that covers solar assets on three continents.  The scope includes: conversion stations composed of 1500V inverters, medium voltage switchgear, transformers, and complete monitoring and control system, as well as lifecycle maintenance services.

     

    Posted at 26 May, 2017 | Read more
  • A Tiny Island Off Singapore May Hold Keys to Energy's Future

    On a small island off the southern coast of Singapore, a French energy company is experimenting with what it hopes will be the future of renewable power storage.

    Engie SA is helping build a small, self-contained power grid on Semakau Island to demonstrate the usefulness of hydrogen gas in converting intermittent power from solar panels and wind turbines into stored fuel that can generate electricity days or even months later, when the need is higher.

    Posted at 26 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Trina IBC Solar Cell Record 'Significant'

    The recent announcement by Trina Solar that it had reached a new solar conversion efficiency record of 24.13 percent in a Changzhou, China laboratory for an interdigitated back contact (IBC) mono-crystalline silicon cell, is a “significant achievement,” according to a U.S. laboratory analyst.

    “The efficiency is significant given the size of the cell at six inches,” says Abasifreke Ebong, a professor in the Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

    Posted at 26 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Are Solar and Wind Really Killing Coal, Nuclear and Grid Reliability?

    U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry in April requested a study to assess the effect of renewable energy policies on nuclear and coal-fired power plants. Some energy analysts responded with confusion, as the subject has been extensively studied by grid operators and the Department of Energy’s own national labs. Others were more critical, saying the intent of the review is to favor the use of nuclear and coal over renewable sources.

    Posted at 25 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Arizona Utility Buys Solar Power at ‘Historically Low Price’

    Arizona utility Tucson Electric Power (TEP) said this week that it will buy solar energy at a historically low price from a new local system large enough to power 21,000 homes.

    Posted at 25 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Cracking the PPA: Renewable Energy Projects and Energy Storage

    Colocating energy storage with renewable generation resources seems like a natural partnership to reduce the intermittency of renewable generators. Several projects have been built across the country combining storage with wind or solar projects. While the co-location of such facilities can yield many benefits, there are a number of legal and practical issues that need to be considered when deciding to acquire and co-locate storage facilities (particularly battery projects) with existing or new renewable generation. 

    Posted at 25 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Idling Wind Power Facilities: A Serious Issue Facing China’s Wind Sector

    The average curtailment rate among wind power facilities across China remains a serious issue, at 17 percent, while full-year capacity of the idling facilities stood at 49.7 billion kWh for 2016, according to data from the China National Energy Administration. 

    Posted at 25 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Stable Growth Ahead for China’s PV Industry in Second Half of 2017

    China’s solar PV industry maintained rapid growth during 1Q17. Insiders said that the sustained and steady growth could be expected to continue during the second half of this year, on the heels of increasingly improved technologies and an acceleration of the transformation already underway across the industry.

    Posted at 24 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Illinois Housing Project to Host Unique Community Solar Effort

    The central mission of Over The Rainbow (OTR), a nonprofit that provides housing across northern Illinois for adults with physical disabilities, has nothing to do with producing cleaner, more efficient energy. And yet, if all goes according to plan, its Hill Arboretum Apartments in Evanston, Ill., will be home to an innovative foray into community solar.

    Posted at 24 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Storage and Solar Finance: Programs for the Rising Behind-the-meter Markets in the US, EU

    The global energy storage industry will expand rapidly in the next few years, as it moves to support solar and other infrastructure that is growing more and more complex.

    Posted at 24 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Move Over Tesla, Europe's Building Its Own Battery Gigafactories

    Battery-making gigafactories are about to arrive in Europe, challenging a lead Tesla Inc. is building at a plant in Nevada and opening the way for a quicker shift toward green power for both cars and utilities.

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Monday is scheduled to break ground at a 500 million-euro ($543 million) plant to assemble lithium-ion energy-storage units for Daimler AG, which produces Mercedes-Benz and Maybach luxury cars.

     

    Posted at 24 May, 2017 | Read more
  • 6 Graphics Show How US Utilities Are Turning Corporate Demand into Renewables Growth

    Utilities are breaking away from traditional electricity products to offer customers access to large-scale renewable energy. Until very recently, utilities did not differentiate the sort of power they offered customers. With very few exceptions, everyone shared in the cost and used electricity from the same fleet of power generating stations.

    Posted at 24 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Mercedes-Benz Energy and Vivint Solar team up to bring automotive battery innovation to the U.S. residential solar market

    The two companies will introduce a joint offering that will provide customers with the German engineering and performance of Mercedes-Benz batteries coupled with Vivint Solar's expertise in designing, installing and servicing solar energy systems.

    Posted at 23 May, 2017 | Read more
  • CEO: WINDPOWER 2017 Has “A Brand-new Attitude”

    Wind energy professionals are gathering in California this week to showcase new products and services, network and discuss the issues relevant to the growth of wind energy at the American Wind Energy Association’s (AWEA’s) annual WINDPOWER 2017 event.

    Renewable Energy World asked exhibitors and companies attending the event to tell us what they will be showing on the tradeshow floor. Here are just some of the announcements we received.

    Posted at 23 May, 2017 | Read more
  • SolarCity, SunRun Win Arizona Tax Suit Over Exemption

    SolarCity Corp. and rival SunRun Inc. persuaded an Arizona appeals court that certain tax exemptions for solar panels don’t violate the state constitution, according to an opinion released May 18.

    The Arizona Court of Appeals rejected the state Department of Revenue’s contention that solar panels leased to residents and businesses generate electricity just as traditional electricity providers do, subjecting them to the same taxes (Solarcity Corp. v. Ariz. Dep’t of Revenue , 2017 BL 165607, Ariz. Ct. App., Div. 1, No. 1 CA-TX 15-0008, 5/17/17 ).

     

    Posted at 22 May, 2017 | Read more
  • As 100 Percent Renewables Become the New Norm, a New Role for Utilities Emerges

    Portland, Ore., is one of the most recent municipalities to join dozens of cities and states across the U.S. in pledges to run on 100 percent renewable energy in the coming decades. Portland is taking a two-step approach toward its goal.

    Posted at 22 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Listen Up: What Home Owners Need To Know About Battery Storage Systems

    Since the sun does not shine at night we need a way to store daytime-generated solar energy. Net metering is an elegant and 100% efficient way to shift excess solar power, but that system will not work at high solar penetration levels. Never mind the fact that utilities are loath to allow their customers to generate electricity for less than it costs them to deliver this power. 

    As a result, battery storage is on the minds of almost all new solar customers. Storage technology, incentives, favorable electric rates and control software are all evolving rapidly. There are currently about a dozen companies with battery storage systems designed for use with rooftop solar. Like peanut butter and chocolate, many solar companies are starting to offer battery storage systems along with their solar systems.

    My advice is to proceed with caution. Even though off-grid battery storage systems have been available for years, we are at the very early stages of grid-tied solar combined with battery storage. From a hardware standpoint, battery storage costs are plummeting, and new inverters/charge controllers are being developed. Perhaps more importantly, software that will efficiently interact with solar, batteries, the grid and your home energy consumption still has limited functionality. For more about the practicalities of home battery storage, Listen Up to this week’s Energy Show on Renewable Energy World.

     

    Posted at 22 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Interconnectors — Moving Clean Power Around a Continent

    In the U.K., National Grid is the utility that owns the high voltage electricity network in England and Wales. It is also one of four British gas distribution companies. It’s a big player — “joining everything up” — within the UK’s overall energy system.

    Posted at 22 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Ameren Unveils Advanced Distributed Energy Microgrid

    Ameren Corp. has completed an advanced utility-scale microgrid. The $5 million facility, located at Ameren's Technology Applications Center (TAC) adjacent to the University of Illinois campus in Champaign, Illinois, is capable of serving paying customer loads on a utility distribution feeder.

    Posted at 19 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Solar Decathlon: Real World Solar Projects for Hardworking Students

    What is the best design for a livable home powered entirely by the sun that can be transported anywhere in the world and assembled in just a few days? Solar Decathlon competitions worldwide have netted 274 different-yet-correct answers to this question since it was first posed in 2002.

    Posted at 19 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Grid Parity? The Real Story Behind the Concept and Why It Relates to Diesel Generators

    There’s been a decade of talk about if solar (or wind) has reached grid parity. And now, with the increased use of batteries and storage, the question becomes more relevant, as renewables can supply electricity beyond the generation time. 

    Posted at 18 May, 2017 | Read more
  • 3@3 on Solar PV: US Manufacturing, Module Pricing, Tesla

    Today's topics include the slow and steady downfall of U.S. solar manufacturing and how that could effect PV module pricing. We'll also talk Tesla's new solar roof tile and consider how the planned manufacturing facility in Buffalo, NY is progressing.

    Posted at 17 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Women of Wind Energy Rebrands as WRISE to Serve Greater Renewable Energy Space

    Answering a call for representation for women across all sectors of renewable energy, the nonprofit organization Women of Wind Energy (WoWE) has formally changed its name to Women of Renewable Industries and Sustainable Energy (WRISE).

    Posted at 17 May, 2017 | Read more
  • As Utility Solar Grows in Virginia, So Do Tensions with Rooftop Installers

    Advocates for small solar say Virginia’s progress on utility-scale solar has been largely at the expense of rooftop and community-owned installations.

    Posted at 17 May, 2017 | Read more
  • ENGIE to Complete Its First Energy Storage Project in Northern Chile This Year

    ENGIE group unit ENGIE Energia Chile will install a 2MW/2MWh energy storage system in Arica, Chile, later this year.

    Posted at 17 May, 2017 | Read more
  • Spain Seeks $4.3BN Investment to Meet EU Clean Energy Goal

    Spain is seeking to lure investment of as much as 3.9 billion euros ($4.3 billion) through its biggest auction yet for contracts to supply electricity from clean-energy sources, part of an effort to meet European Union targets.

    Posted at 17 May, 2017 | Read more
  • How Smart Contracts [Could] Simplify Clean Energy Distribution

    On Tuesday May 9, Rocky Mountain Institute announced that ten energy companies from nine nations, including Sempra and Royal Dutch Shell, had joined the Energy Web Foundation (EWF), a nonprofit comprising of Rocky Mountain Institute and Grid Singularity, with a mission to accelerate the commercial deployment of blockchain technology in the energy sector. The foundation also announced $2.5 million in funding.

    This is big news. Why? Because if the vision of what blockchain can do comes true, it could eliminate a lot of the complexities around managing distributed energy resources. And the fact that major energy companies are allocating resources to understand it is evidence that blockchain is worth paying attention to.

    Posted at 15 May, 2017 | Read more