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Combining big floating solar with hydropower

Scientists in Bangladesh have evaluated how a 50 MW floating PV plant could be integrated with the 230 MW Karnafuli Hydroelectric Power Station, located at the Kaptai Dam on the Karnaphuli River. They found that the two energy sources can be perfectly optimized and that PV can compensate for the reservoir’s shortage of water storage during the winter season while hydropower can compensate for the poor yields of the floating array during the monsoon season.

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Growatt unveils off-grid inverter

The 3 kW inverter has an efficiency of 95% and features a surge power of 9000 VA. According to the manufacturer, the device is compatible with mainstream lead-acid and lithium-ion batteries.

Redox flow battery retains more than 90% of capacity over 6,000 cycles via new catholyte

The battery was built with a new catholyte and a symmetry-breaking strategy, which consists of changing the symmetry of the redox-active organic molecules instead of using the common approach of attaching a hydrophilic functional group.

Blockchain for PV module recycling

Next Energy and Marubeni are developing a blockchain tech for PV module inspection – with the support of the Japanese government – which they claim is able to provide data on a panel’s traceability and components as well as verifying that the data were not modified or tampered with.

Novel PV module recycling tech from South Korea

Developed by the Korea Institute of Energy Research (KIER), the “non-destructive” technology is claimed to enable the recovery of 100% of a module’s glass and to allow the reuse of silicon for producing new solar cells with an efficiency of 20.05%.

Cooling PV modules with plants, coir pith

An Indian-Malaysian research group has investigated the effectiveness of several passive cooling techniques for solar panels, including the placement of plants around the modules or coir pith underneath them, both of which, surprisingly, offered good performance in terms of temperature reduction and power yield.

Lithium-metal battery with capacity retention of 88% over 1,000 cycles

German scientists have applied a new combination of cathodes and electrolytes to improve the stability of lithium-metal batteries. They fabricated a device with an energy density of 560 watt-hours per kilogram and a Coulombic efficiency of 99.94%.

Plug-and-play solar module from the Netherlands

Supersola has developed a 315 W, half-cut monocrystalline PV module. It costs €699 and can be coupled with other two panels to form a 1 kW residential PV system.

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Lithium-sulfur battery with shorter charging time, longer lifespan

Japanese scientists have developed a new lithium-sulfur battery by using titanium oxide and titanium nitride to prevent the formation of polysulfides during the fabrication process. This allows the battery to retain 85% of its capacity after 500 cycles at 2 C.

Recovering waste heat from solar cells via a thermoelectric generator

Scientists in Italy have created a hybrid thermoelectric photovoltaic (HTEPV) system based on a thermoelectric generator and a wide-gap perovskite solar cell. The device is able to recover waste heat from the PV unit and produce additional power. According to its creators, this configuration needs large gap cells as these are less sensitive to temperature in terms of efficiency.

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