minigrid

The long read: Packing light

Tens of thousands of health facilities in low- and middle-income countries lack reliable electricity, contributing to high rates of maternal mortality. Health workers struggling in near darkness use candles, kerosene lanterns, or cellphones to provide illumination for critical procedures. They ask patients to pay for candles, batteries for flashlights, or kerosene for lanterns – a barrier to health care for women living in extreme poverty. We Care Solar designs and delivers pre-wired compact Solar Suitcases for maternal health care facilities in the developing world. This all-in-one solar+storage solution for childbirth evolved from a doctoral student’s research project, and is being scaled worldwide to ensure that no woman gives birth in the dark.

UK’s Power Roll trials low-cost, flexible solar-and-storage system in Himalayan villages

The system will use an innovative solar film developed by Power Roll that can be manufactured for just $0.03/Watt and deployed on a wide range of non-load bearing buildings, including agricultural and warehouse roofs.

The long read: Advanced lead batteries for microgrids

With demand for cleaner forms of energy and a greater need for flexibility and reliability in the power supply, the role of battery energy storage is critical. Innovation in battery technology is essential to match demand growth and the shift in technical requirements. Predictions of 400,000 MWh of battery storage required by 2025 means that all battery technologies will play a role in contributing to a clean energy future.

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The long read: Solar vs. salty drinking water

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.

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IESA proposes a policy framework for energy storage in Electricity Act

Defining energy storage under the Electricity Act could help start ancillary services and frequency regulation through energy storage as a flexible asset. It will also help to enable electric vehicle charging infrastructure, vehicle-to-grid (V2G) concepts and microgrids integration with expanded grid connectivity in the long run, according to the industry body.

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Solar will turn vicious water-energy-climate cycle into virtuous loop

The International Water Management Institute is promoting the Solar Irrigation for Agricultural Resilience (SoLAR) initiative to expand the use of solar irrigation systems throughout Bangladesh, India, Nepal, and Pakistan. Proponents of solar irrigation pumps say that they can have a strong positive impact on groundwater.

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Proposals invited for transnational projects on energy storage solutions

The aim is development of sustainable, integrated solutions for both short- and long-term storage. November 12 is the last date for submitting expressions of interest. Projects are expected to start before December 15, 2020.

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Li-ion battery prices fall to $187/kWh

The benchmark levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) for lithium-ion batteries has fallen to $187 per kilowatt-hour since the first half of 2018. The overwhelming cost improvement is making batteries paired with solar or wind projects challenge coal- and gas-fired generation for grid stability, according to BloombergNEF (BNEF).

Intersolar India: EV program must be accelerated, storage on everyone’s lips

For India to achieve its 2030 dreams of fully electrifying its passenger vehicle market, and growing a leading manufacturing industry, its electric vehicle program must be accelerated. Meanwhile, if Intersolar India 2018 had to nominate the most-repeated word at the event, “storage” would win hands down.

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India will auction 80 GW of solar, wind capacity by March 2020

The Indian Government plans to tender 60 GW of solar and 20 GW of wind capacity by March 2020. This would complete the planned auctions for its targets of 100 GW solar and 60 GW wind installations by 2022, leaving two years for project execution, according to an year-end review by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE).

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