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On Friday, May 26, on what was expected to be one of the hottest days of the year, solar panels in the UK generated a record amount of power, enough to meet almost 25 percent of demand. This is according to data compiled by National Grid Plc and Sheffield University.
At noon London-time, 8.75 GW of power was being generated by the solar PV, breaking a previous record of 8.49 GW, overtaking nuclear power in the country.
SolarWorld AG’s U.S. unit joined a trade case asking the federal government to impose duties on low-cost imports that have fueled a nationwide boom in solar installations.
The company, which filed a separate trade complaint that led to U.S. tariffs on Chinese panels in 2012, become a co-petitioner Thursday in Suniva Inc.’s case before the U.S. International Trade Commission. Suniva, a bankrupt Georgia manufacturer, initiated the complaint in April, saying it’s impossible to compete with cheap imports, predominately from Asia.
The recent announcement by Trina Solar that it had reached a new solar conversion efficiency record of 24.13 percent in a Changzhou, China laboratory for an interdigitated back contact (IBC) mono-crystalline silicon cell, is a “significant achievement,” according to a U.S. laboratory analyst.
“The efficiency is significant given the size of the cell at six inches,” says Abasifreke Ebong, a professor in the Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.
French IPP Neoen, and energy management company Schneider Electric last week signed a 750 MW Conext SmartGen multi-year framework agreement that covers solar assets on three continents. The scope includes: conversion stations composed of 1500V inverters, medium voltage switchgear, transformers, and complete monitoring and control system, as well as lifecycle maintenance services.
On a small island off the southern coast of Singapore, a French energy company is experimenting with what it hopes will be the future of renewable power storage.
Engie SA is helping build a small, self-contained power grid on Semakau Island to demonstrate the usefulness of hydrogen gas in converting intermittent power from solar panels and wind turbines into stored fuel that can generate electricity days or even months later, when the need is higher.
U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry in April requested a study to assess the effect of renewable energy policies on nuclear and coal-fired power plants. Some energy analysts responded with confusion, as the subject has been extensively studied by grid operators and the Department of Energy’s own national labs. Others were more critical, saying the intent of the review is to favor the use of nuclear and coal over renewable sources.
Arizona utility Tucson Electric Power (TEP) said this week that it will buy solar energy at a historically low price from a new local system large enough to power 21,000 homes.
Colocating energy storage with renewable generation resources seems like a natural partnership to reduce the intermittency of renewable generators. Several projects have been built across the country combining storage with wind or solar projects. While the co-location of such facilities can yield many benefits, there are a number of legal and practical issues that need to be considered when deciding to acquire and co-locate storage facilities (particularly battery projects) with existing or new renewable generation.
The average curtailment rate among wind power facilities across China remains a serious issue, at 17 percent, while full-year capacity of the idling facilities stood at 49.7 billion kWh for 2016, according to data from the China National Energy Administration.
China’s solar PV industry maintained rapid growth during 1Q17. Insiders said that the sustained and steady growth could be expected to continue during the second half of this year, on the heels of increasingly improved technologies and an acceleration of the transformation already underway across the industry.