In remote regions, photovoltaic-diesel hybrid systems are increasingly replacing power generation solely from fossil fuels.

Munich, April 9, 2015 - Traditional diesel generators, widely used across the globe, are now being complemented by photovoltaics in new markets and applications. Solar-diesel hybrid systems already represent profitable alternatives, particularly for large-scale industrial users in remote, yet sunny, regions. From June 9-12, 2015, the Off-Grid Platform at Intersolar Europe in Munich presents an overview of applications and markets for off-grid photovoltaics.

In remote regions, photovoltaic-diesel hybrid systems are increasingly replacing power generation solely from fossil fuels. Despite sinking oil prices, worldwide demand for power from photovoltaics (PV) is rising. The reason for this is that PV modules are now 75% less expensive than they were six years ago. Reports from the International Renewable Energy Agency indicate that, in many regions, PV electricity can now be produced at the same price as electricity from fossil fuels or lower. Photovoltaic-diesel hybrid systems therefore have the potential to replace conventional diesel generators, particularly in remote areas. In Bolivia, for instance, the world's largest PV-diesel hybrid power plant with a lithium-ion battery system is currently under construction, while the German army has opted for mobile solar containers with PV modules and battery storage systems in order to save fossil fuels.

Exhibitors at Intersolar Europe 2015 will showcase the entire spectrum of new off-grid technologies, from solar home systems through hybrid plants to energy management systems and storage solutions for local power grids. The exhibition also focuses attention on the growing market for off-grid PV and hybrid systems by giving them a stage of their own. The East Bavarian Technology Transfer Institute (OTTI), the German Solar Industry Association (BSW-Solar), the Alliance for Rural Electrification (ARE), and Intersolar Europe are pooling their expertise as organizers of the new Off-Grid Platform. This includes the BSW Off-Grid Power Forum at the BSW-Solar pavilion, taking place during the Intersolar Europe exhibition on June 11 and 12. The OTTI conference entitled "Small PV Applications - Rural Electrification and Commercial Use" also forms part of the Off-Grid Platform, and will be held prior to the exhibition at the ICM - Internationales Congress Center München - on June 9 and 10.

Spotlight on rural electrification

The OTTI conference gives an overview of markets, applications, and players in off-grid photovoltaics. The event focuses on power supply in rural areas provided by solar home systems as well as the supply of public institutions, industry, and infrastructure in areas that are remote from the national grid. Alongside new concepts for PV products, such as solar lamps and cell phone chargers, the event also sheds light on the financial and political conditions for off-grid PV in each of the markets.

PV systems replace diesel generators

Thanks to their lower cost and marginal environmental impact, PV systems are able to replace or complement conventional diesel generators. The limits of today's technical solutions for solar and diesel power plants will be explained in the session entitled "Solar/Diesel Power Supply: Exploring Design and Pushing Back Boundaries" (June 10, 2:30pm-4:00pm, ICM, room 14 A) at the Intersolar Europe Conference. This session also examines the role played by hybrid inverters designed to manage the interplay between solar installations, diesel generators, and the local grid.

Trend toward hybrid systems

The number of hybrid systems used around the world is rising. Various renewable technologies such as PV/wind and PV/hydropower are being combined in single plants. Here, costs can be saved and the environmental impact reduced if several renewable technologies share the same infrastructure. The Intersolar Europe Conference session on "Renewable Energy Hybrid Power Plants" (June 10, 4:00pm-5:30pm, ICM, room 13 A) explores the trend toward hybridization and presents real-life projects.

Intersolar Europe 2015 takes place from June 10-12 at Messe München.

Further information on Intersolar Europe can be found at

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