As lithium-ion battery sales boom, suppliers of equipment for manufacturing photovoltaics are branching out into the storage industry. Are these ventures leading them to bankruptcy or to a breakthrough in storing solar energy?
While India’s solar potential is unquestionable, progress has been uneasy and race-to-the-bottom pricing has held back the adoption of technologies such as MLPE. However, that is beginning to change, writes Prasidh Kumar, CEO of Soreva Energy, as grid modernization requires proactive monitoring and optimization technologies.
The region’s climate, developing economies and demographic growth are driving increased electricity demand in the Middle East and North Africa. However, as a hub of conventional energy supply, the region has been slow to embrace PV. To capture more of the value chain and deliver the full potential of solar, there are increasing calls for distributed generation deployment to play a bigger role.
Bifacial solar panel performance has become such a hot topic there are now at least four competing field test sites ramping up in the United States, each matching a different set of trackers and panels. DNV GL, Soltec, NREL and Sandia are all involved, and initial results are expected this year, once a year’s data has been collected.
Sources have told pv magazine the authorities are ready to restart the nation’s residential rooftop segment and have also agreed upon subsidy payments for other distributed generation and utility-scale projects.
Although the solar industry sees itself as young, its assets are aging. Owners still struggle with the complexity of making the best use of big data analysis to improve plant efficiency and profitability. Ragna Schmidt-Haupt, of Everoze, examines why this has not changed, and what can or should be improved. Artificial intelligence, advanced data analytics, automated assessments and smart monitoring software – holistic solar asset management starts here.
With the International Renewable Energy Agency’s number-crunchers predicting almost 5.4 GW of new solar across the six Gulf Cooperation Council nations today, Suhail Mohammed Faraj Al Mazroui said his nation alone would install 6-7 GW of new renewables capacity by 2024, as pv magazine editor-in-chief Jonathan Gifford reports.
Beijing has outlined a series of policies mandating local and provincial authorities, state-owned banks and grid operators to pull out the stops to drive the rapid escalation of subsidy-free PV projects. The announcement has seen Chinese solar stocks on the rise.
Battery storage is racing even faster than the PV market did a few years ago. Costs are plummeting and new production lines are popping up all around the world. Smart people with smart ideas are leveraging venture capital and research funds. M&A activity is also accelerating with a new range of investors taking interest. But the technology battle is far from over, says Ragna Schmidt-Haupt, Partner at Energy Consultancy Everoze.
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