With bifacial modules making their way into the mainstream, tracker manufacturers and energy companies are operating test facilities around the world. To drive the LCOE as low as possible, tracker manufacturers now also care about what is happening underneath the modules, and not just above. As the power comes from light reflected from the ground, increasing that reflectivity has been mooted by many stakeholders. This is not without complication, however, and the quest for optimization goes into the next round.
A solar array – complete with battery storage and remote monitoring and control capabilities – has been transforming brackish groundwater into fresh drinking water in the village of Beyo Gulan in the Somaliland desert since 2018. The installation was developed by Germany’s Phaesun. Its unique combination of low-maintenance electrodialysis desalination with PV saw it pick up an Outstanding Projects award from The smarter E. Phaesun’s Géraldine Quelle and Florian Martini say they are honored by the plaudits, and are readying the system for series production.
The impressive progress made by offshore wind arrays may be attracting a new group of PV developers looking to leave the constraints of the roof and free field behind. And while saltwater, wind and waves are no friend of PV, progress is being made in proving the potential applications.
Floating PV has matured quickly, but while the opportunity of solar on the sea may appear immense, there is nothing trivial about the challenges posed by salinity, wind, and waves. However, technical and financial solutions are appearing on the market, giving small island communities a chance to reduce their reliance on polluting diesel.
The full house at the Future PV Roundtable at this year’s Renewable Energy India Expo was evidence of the buoyant expectations for the application of floating PV in the Indian market. But with the technology still at a relatively early stage in the country, many concerns are rising to the surface.
The benefits of heterojunction technology are well known. But as the first modules come onto the market from REC Group’s new HJT lines, the competitive landscape is crowded, but not without opportunity.
High levels of interest in floating solar installations in the Indian market was demonstrated on the second day of the Renewable Energy India Expo, which concludes today in New Delhi. The pv magazine Future PV Roundtable addressed the theme in a full-house conference session, where many questions were raised about module and array durability and performance, along with monitoring, O&M and safety considerations.
Indian module makers are gearing up for an end-of-year surge of procurement for solar projects in the country and hoping that their investments in incorporating global manufacturing benchmarks will translate into enhanced sales offtake.
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