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Middle East

Larsen & Toubro wins 400 MW solar EPC work in Gujarat

The Indian engineering, procurement and construction contractor has secured orders to build two solar plants of 200 MW each in Gujarat. It has also won significant contracts for power transmission and distribution related work in Rajasthan, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, and Arabian country Qatar.

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The long read: Made in MENA

Despite big ambitions and even bigger projects being built across the region, PV manufacturing in the Middle East has never got off the ground. In Saudi Arabia, however, one manufacturer is realizing plans for a gigawatt-scale module factory. Over the next five years, Desert Technologies plans to bring 3 GW of heterojunction production to the Kingdom. pv magazine takes a look at the challenges facing PV manufacturers in Saudi Arabia, and the opportunities the nation may hold.

The long read: Compressed air storage to be more than just hot air in Israel

Solar-linked projects will be developed by domestic firm Augwind and will feature underground storage tanks. One of the systems will be built by French energy giant EDF and will feature a 20 MWh compressed air storage system and 5 MW solar array.

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The long read: PV in the water-energy-food nexus

Sector coupling may be somewhat of a buzzword, but it also points to opportunities for PV beyond the power markets, which may quickly reach limitations during peak hours of irradiation. Combined energy, food and clean water production presents one such opportunity, with benefits for developers, utilities and communities.

Sterling and Wilson commissions 25 MW solar project in Oman

The latest addition is the Indian multinational’s second project in Oman after a 125 MWp solar plant commissioned in June last year.

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The long read: Smarter robots to step up to service

On Dec. 1, Tel-Aviv based robotic cleaning provider Ecoppia launched an initial public offering on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. In doing so, the seven-year-old solar startup raised $83.8 million from public and institutional investors – although heavily slated toward the latter. Jean Scemama, who joined Ecoppia as CEO in April 2020, says the IPO will allow it to double down on R&D efforts and expand into the provision of services.

Ecoppia robotic cleaners selected for Azure Power’s 450MW solar project

The Israeli developer of module cleaning robots has bagged an order from Indian solar developer Azure Power to deploy its water-free cleaning solution across a 450 MW solar project in Rajasthan.

Solar panel cleaning startup Solavio Labs selected into Canadian accelerator program

The Coimbatore-based startup has designed an autonomous solar panel cleaning bot with a modular design, making it compatible with almost any structure, mounting area, or climatic condition.

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India and Israel to work together on perovskite solar cells and lithium sulfur batteries

Low-cost batteries and novel perovskite materials are among the topics selected for joint research and development.

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IEEFA: Why India can’t match the Gulf region’s record-low solar tariffs

India’s solar tariffs—whilst some of the lowest in the world—are almost double the Gulf region’s US¢1.35-1.80/kWh.

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