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Weekend read: Navigating hailstorms

Owners and insurers suffered record hail losses in 2022. John Sedgwick, president of engineering advisory VDE Americas, provides some pro tips for mitigating such risks.

Global solar capacity additions hit 268 GW in 2022, says BNEF

BloombergNEF Analyst Jenny Chase says the world installed 268 GW of new solar capacity in 2022, with annual installations expected to hit 315 GW in 2023. In a recent interview with pv magazine, Chase pointed to a large backlog of delivered PV modu...

Chinese PV Industry Brief: Trina to supply 875 MW of trackers for Qatar solar plants

Trina Solar has signed an 875 MW tracker supply deal with Samsung C&T for Qatar’s new "IC Solar" project, while Chint said it aims to sell up to 8 GW of residential PV assets by the end of 2023.



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Nepal kicks off tender for 100 MW of solar

The Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) is seeking bids for solar projects with minimum capacities of 1 MW, for a total of 100 MW across 16 sites. Members of the country’s solar association are demanding higher power purchase agreement prices in order to...
Energy Storage

Danish renewables giant buys Australian megaproject

Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners has sharpened its focus on long-duration storage in Australia with the acquisition of the proposed Bowen Renewable Energy Hub project, which is expected to combine 1.4 GW of pumped hydro storage with huge solar and wind...

Sunbond unveils 550 W mono PERC modules

India's Sunbond Energy has developed new mono PERC modules built with 144 half-cut M10 cells and 10 busbars. They are available in power outputs ranging from 520 W to 550 W, with efficiencies of 19.83% and 21.23%.

Poland allocates 486 MW of solar in latest renewables auction

Poland’s Energy Regulatory Office has awarded 486 MW of solar in its latest renewables auction, which was largely unsubscribed. It allocated 150 MW for installations smaller than 1 MW, with a lowest bid of PLN 0.24477 ($0.056)/kWh, and 336 MW for large...

French rail operator to develop solar systems capable of operating at 9,000 V

SNCF Réseau and the National Institute for Solar Energy (INES) in France have agreed to jointly develop renewables projects. They aim to build PV systems that can supply continuous power at voltages of 3 kV, 6 kV, and 9 kV, while optimizing installation...

Press Releases

SC SOLAR won a 4GW order of HJT cleaning and texturing equipment

Recently, SC SOLAR obtained the purchase order of HJT cleaning and texturing equipment from Gold Stone (Fujian) Energy Company Limited. The order is 4GW which containing cleaning and texturing equipment, pre-cleaning equipment, etching cleaning equipment and automation.

LONGi introduced the latest Hi-MO 6 modules to their valued customers in Malaysia

LONGi, a world-leading solar technology company, recently held a customer appreciation event at the The St. Regis Kula Lumpur in Malaysia to reveal its newly launched Hi-MO 6 series, its first modules designed exclusively for the global distributed consumer market.

Universal Alloy Corporation Vietnam partners with Asia Clean Capital Vietnam to power its manufacturing base with green electricity

Asia Clean Capital Vietnam and Universal Alloy Corporation Vietnam have entered into a power purchase agreement and kicked off the rooftop solar PV project with a capacity of 4. 3 MWp.

Amara Raja Power Systems Selects Nextracker to Supply Solar Trackers for NTPC’s 306 MWp Nokh Power Plant

Solar systems leader chosen for its India track record and proven bifacial design that increases energy gain on utility-scale solar power plants.

Opinion & Analysis

Solar aid in dark times

With Russia intent on destroying Ukraine’s energy infrastructure, a network of NGOs is taking up the challenge to donate small and mobile energy supply solutions. Astrid Schneider, a member of clean energy nonprofit Eurosolar, shared the story of the small solar kits that are making a big difference, in this month's edition of pv magazine.

Next year will bring micro and mega grids

This year has witnessed upheaval in the global energy system as inflation, geopolitical conflict, and the reality of a changing climate continue to drive the transition to cleaner energy. Next year, these trends are likely to continue and accelerate as renewable energy adoption continues to grow and the inextricable link between energy security and national security is increasingly recognized. Alan Greenshields, of US-based iron-salt flow battery maker ESS Inc, offers four predictions for 2023.

Tracking environmental performance improvements in solar modules

New life-cycle assessment (LCA) data for PV systems confirms that greenhouse gas emissions from 1 kWh of solar electricity are far lower than emissions from fossil-fuel power plants. The difference has been fairly constant since 2018, but has improved substantially since when IEA PVPS started reporting on this measure in 1996.

Solar module prices: A penny saved… is a panel spurned

PV module prices have finally stabilized and a slight downward trend has even started to set in. Whether this will continue depends mainly on how demand shapes up over the next few months. The softening of prices reflects a gradual build-up of inventories which need to be drawn down again this year, if possible – even if it means slashing prices. But for other PV-system components, the situation is quite different, writes Martin Schachinger of solar wholesaler pvXchange.

COP27 failed the most climate-vulnerable

While the climate summit held at Sharm El Sheikh last month prompted pledges of raised funding for solar lanterns and single-panel systems, the money allocated to date is woefully short of what has been estimated would be required to provide universal access to electricity this decade. Drew Corbyn of Netherlands-based global off-grid solar body GOGLA, outlines three urgent courses of action to accelerate access to electricity.

Regulator could prove solar’s NEMesis

The latest attempt by the California Public Utilities Commission – CPUC, the US state’s regulator – to reform net metering rules, seems to again be solely motivated by the desire to kill off rooftop PV, as energy economist Ahmad Faruqui reported in the latest issue of pv magazine.


African PAYG solar companies have hogged 72% of sector’s investment

The first post-pandemic update on the state of the world's off-grid solar industry has painted a picture of domination by European companies, but highlighted the potential for new startups in West Africa and an increasing use of PV as a backup to unreliable grid supplies.

Off-grid solar continues to expand

The off-grid solar sector has shown resilience in the face of pandemic-related challenges, with 70 million people gaining access to electricity from early 2020 to the end of 2021. However, the ability to pay for solar energy kits has taken a hit.

AfDB announces cheap loans to back off-grid solar in Africa

The African Development Bank has announced that European and US donors will provide $20 million of concessional loans to support pay-as-you-go solar companies in sub-Saharan Africa.

Irena gives latest update on stark chances of electricity access for all by 2030

The International Renewable Energy Agency’s latest annual report on the progress towards UN sustainable development goal seven estimates 670 million people will still lack electricity in 2030, and more than 2 billion will be reliant on unhealthy, polluting cooking methods.

Poland prioritizes renewables in pandemic-recovery plans

It should come as no surprise that clean energy spending is a big chunk of Warsaw’s four-year EU grant and loans package, given that the nation’s grid-connected solar capacity rose from 3.99 GW at the end of 2020 to 6.3 GW four months ago, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency.

Irena fleshes out chilling effect of Covid on off-grid solar

The clean power numbers published annually by the International Renewable Energy Agency provide a snapshot of the global solar market and, this year, a lot of figures were unchanged from the previous dataset, especially in the off-grid segment.

Markets & Policy


Asia takes the lead on floating PV

Floating PV is consolidating as a growth segment for PV demand, mainly driven by supportive policies and incentives extended by governments across the world. A major reason for this push is the limited land availability in many markets. Despite higher equipment prices compared to ground-mounted installations, developers see the opportunity to save on land and O&M costs. The output can also be as much as 30% higher than a ground-mount PV plant, depending on the site and technology used.

Adani becomes India’s sole producer of large monocrystalline silicon ingots

Adani Solar has started producing large monocrystalline silicon ingots for M10 and G12 wafers. It is targeting 2 GW of ingot and wafer capacity by the end of 2023 and 10 GW by 2025.

Masdar switches on 5 MW solar plant in Seychelles

Masdar said it has started operating the 5 MW Ile de Romainville PV project in the Seychelles. The installation is backed by 3.3 MWh of storage capacity.

China connects 220 MW/440 MWh battery to grid

Robestec has connected a 220 MW/440 MW battery storage system to the grid in Ningxia, China. It is reportedly China’s largest standalone energy storage station, and uses lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries from Hithium Energy Storage.

Belgium’s Flanders region to slash solar, storage premium in 2023

The Flemish government will halve the solar panels premium from a maximum of €1,500 ($1,594) in 2022 to €750 from Jan. 1, 2023. It will also end the home battery premium earlier than initially announced, from April 2023. The premium for heat pump boilers, on the other hand, will be retroactively doubled.

Germany allocates 104 MW of rooftop solar in unsubscribed auction

Germany’s latest solar auction allocated 104 MW of solar for buildings and noise barriers on motorways. The tender volume was 202 MW which went partly unsubscribed. The volume-weighted average award value fell slightly to €0.0874 ($0.093)/kWh.



Australia builds big

While the first half of 2022 was one of the busiest periods on record for new wind projects in Australia, with more than 2 GW breaking ground, solar got off to a much slower start with construction on 635 MW of new PV projects getting underway. Rystad Energy’s David Dixon attributes this slowdown to high cost and supply chain challenges and a lack of available power purchase agreements.

BIPV shading estimation methods key for uptake, says IEA-PVPS

A recently published report from the IEA-PVPS on building integrated photovoltaics (BIPV) digitalization found many BIPV professionals are unsure of a suitable method for estimating shading in BIPV projects.

Emporia unveils residential battery inverter solution

US-based Emporia Energy has developed a home battery system with an inverter and transformer. The lithium iron phosphate (LFP) battery has a storage capacity of 8.2 kWh, and up to six modules can be combined for up to 49 kWh of energy storage. The inverters come in 7.6 kW or 9.6 kW versions.

Chinese PV Industry Brief: Estimated new solar additions may fall short in 2022

China’s National Energy Administration (NEA) said the country installed just under 7.5 GW of new PV in November, bringing cumulative additions in 2022 to 65.7 GW, far short of the estimated 85 GW or more.

DAS Solar unveils n-type bifacial glass-glass module for residential PV

Chinese module manufacturer DAS Solar has launched an all-black bifacial glass-glass module series with an output of 410 W to 430 W. The new series features efficiencies of up to 22% and a temperature coefficient of -0.3% per degree Celsius. The company is offering a 15-year product warranty and a 30-year power warranty for 87.4% of the initial yield.

Ivory Coast set to commission first solar plant

Compagnie Ivoirienne d’Electricité (CIE), a utility in the Ivory Coast, is set to inaugurate its first solar plant – a €40 million ($42.6 million), 37.5 MW installation, backed by a 10 MW storage system by Saft.



Copper is the new silver lining

As the PV industry scales to annual terawatt-level production to rapidly curtail the world’s emissions, it will become more challenging to continue the cost reduction trajectory. Increasing module production from current levels of 200 GW to 300 GW to several terawatts each year will consume significantly more material resources than the industry currently uses. This will require consideration of the additional materials to be sourced, writes Alison Lennon, chief scientist at Sundrive Solar and professor at the UNSW’s School of Photovoltaic and Renewable Energy Engineering.

Longi claims world’s highest efficiency for p-type, indium-free HJT solar cells

Longi said it has achieved a 26.56% efficiency rating for a gallium-doped, p-type heterojunction (HJT) solar cell and a 26.09% efficiency rating for an indium-free HJT cell, both based on M6 wafers. Germany’s Institute for Solar Energy Research in Hamelin (ISFH) has confirmed the results.

3D electronics printer has potential to reshape solar and storage

Australian startup Syenta has developed a 3D printer capable of printing highly complex and functional electronics like photovoltaics, batteries, sensors and more, promising to do so in ways that are faster, cheaper and use less energy.

New method brings durability of perovskite solar cells closer to silicon

Researchers from the United Kingdom, the United States and Australia have reportedly developed a perovskite solar cell with comparable stability and durability to commercial silicon PV cells. They used a high-temperature processing method with dimethylammonium chloride to control the intermediate phases of perovskite crystallization.

New process increases efficiency of CIGS bifacial thin-film solar cells

Researchers from the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (Empa) have developed a new low-temperature production process for bifacial thin-film solar cells based on copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS). It resulted in record yields of 19.8% for front lighting and 10.9% for rear lighting.

Researchers achieved world record 32.5% efficiency for a perovskite tandem solar cell

A group of researchers from Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) has achieved a new world efficiency record for a silicon-perovskite tandem solar cell, with a certified efficiency of 32.5%.



Catalyst for an EU comeback

Plans for Europe’s largest-ever PV cell and module factory are taking shape, with equipment orders placed and a projected start date in mid-2024. Enel Green Power has received €118 million ($116.36 million) in funding from the EU Innovation Fund to support the project, out of a total €600 million investment. The EU is hoping it will catalyze further investment in similar projects, and start a high-tech comeback for European solar manufacturing.

BVG to set up 2 GW solar module fab in India

Bharat Vikas Group (BVG) says it will build a 500 MW, fully automated PV module production line in India, with plans to eventually expand it to 2 GW.

New microinverter for solar water pump applications

Canadian manufacturer Sparq has unveiled a three-phase microinverter for on-grid and off-grid solar water pumps. It has a peak efficiency of 97.5% and a nominal maximum power point tracking (MPPT) efficiency of 99.8%.

Cooling down photovoltaic panels with concrete

Scientists in Italy have proposed the use of radiative coolers made of cementitious materials to reduce the operating temperature of solar panels. The novel system configuration consists of a stack made by a reflector, a cement-based radiative cooler, and a bifacial solar cell.

Lowering grid costs with voltage support from PV inverters at night

US researchers have proposed the use of solar inverters in utility-scale solar assets to replace expensive voltage compensators, in order to provide voltage support at night. They said reactive power from PV inverters could be significantly cheaper and suggested the introduction of incentives to convince PV plant owners.

CubicPV plans 10 GW of conventional silicon wafer production

CubicPV, backed by $26 million in new funding, has announced plans to make silicon wafers in the United States, which would fill a critical gap in the US solar supply chain.

Energy Storage


Cobalt clings on

Cobalt is key for boosting energy density and battery life, but it comes with caveats: expensive, scarce, and linked to unethical mining practices, wild price fluctuations, and a tenuous supply chain. In recent years, battery manufacturers and automakers have intensified efforts to reduce or eliminate cobalt in lithium-ion cathodes. But sometimes, old habits die hard, as pv magazine’s Marija Maisch explains.

Mitsubishi to supply 150 MW/600 MWh storage for US solar projects

Mitsubishi Power Americas will supply batteries for the development of three battery energy storage systems in the southeast US. The three hybrid projects are being developed by Origis Energy as part of 1.5 GW of operational and contracted assets in the region.

The Hydrogen Stream: Hydrogen production set for Tasmania

As Australia’s hydrogen project pipeline doubles in 12 months, Iberdrola announces investment in a green hydrogen and green methanol production plant in Tasmania. Meanwhile, projects in Scandinavia target the shipping industry.

Growatt releases new battery for rooftop solar applications

Growatt’s new APX HV cobalt-free lithium iron phosphate (LFP) battery has a storage capacity of 5 kWh and a nominal voltage of 650 V. It can be scaled up to six battery modules, for a maximum capacity of 30 kWh, or 60 kWh in parallel. It comes with a 10-year warranty.

Solar electric camper catamaran

Swedish startup POL has unveiled POL Lux, a catamaran boat design with dual electric motors and a solar canopy that can covert into a private sleeping area.

Croatia investing in storage amid slow solar development

Croatia is preparing to build Eastern Europe’s largest energy storage project. IE Energy has secured €19.8 million ($20.9 million) to develop a 50 MW storage system, potentially extendable to 110 MW by 2024.

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