SPI 2016 - Yaskawa - Solectria Solar Introduces 1500VDC String Combiners to its Advanced String Combiner Line

The DISCOM 1500's premium features satisfy the growing needs of PV system designers and reduce overall system cost and increase ROI [return on investment].

Panasonic Corporation of North America Makes Second Strategic Investment in Coronal, Fuels Renewable Energy Market Leadership

Groups Launch Coronal Energy, powered by Panasonic

Wildfires Cast a Cloud over West Coast Solar - Vaisala

Summer performance maps illustrate the impact of seasonal fires on productivity during peak season for Californian project owners

World's largest tidal stream project unveiled in Scotland

Scottish Renewables, the representative voice of the renewable energy industry in Scotland, responds to today's announcement that Atlantis has officially unveiled its MeyGen project, the world's largest free-stream tidal power array.

U.S. Solar Market Adds More Than 2 GW in Q2 2016

Growing 43 percent year over year, the U.S. saw 2,051 megawatts (MW) of solar photovoltaic (PV) installed in the second quarter of 2016. According to GTM Research and the Solar Energy Industries Association's (SEIA) latest U.S. Solar Market Insight report, this marks the eleventh consecutive quarter in which more than a gigawatt (GW) of PV was installed.

Is solar power in nuclear disaster exclusion zones advisable?

ARNOLD GUNDERSEN for Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists:  My own experience near solar arrays in Fukushima Prefecture indicates that the problems of building and maintaining solar installations in a contaminated nuclear wasteland are over-simplified, and worse, totally ignored. One of the greatest burdens of maintaining operating atomic reactors is the cost of working in a Radiologically Controlled Area. (The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory defines a Radiologically Controlled Area as: “Any area to which access is managed to protect individuals from exposure to radiation or radioactive materials. Individuals who enter Controlled Areas without entering Radiological Areas are not expected to receive a total effective dose equivalent of more than 0.1 rem (0.001 Sievert) in a year.”) Each nuclear power plant operates with specific instructions and constraints, with Radiation Work Permits tailored for each specific maintenance activity. Because special clothing, special respiratory equipment, and special radiation monitoring equipment are routinely required to perform even minimum maintenance activities inside a nuclear power plant, every activity takes longer, costs more, and requires more people inside each reactor than necessary in any other industrial setting.

Consequently, the question becomes: Does building solar panels on land contaminated with nuclear waste resemble work in a normal industrial setting, or is it more similar to work inside a radiologically contaminated atomic reactor—at significantly higher cost?  Full Article:

Is Rent-to-Own Solar Power the Answer?

Jason Overdorf for SMITHSONIAN.COM:  For a little more than a year, the family has been supplementing the sporadic electricity the village gets from the grid with solar energy, thanks to a new pay-as-you-go business model pioneered by Canadian entrepreneur Paul Needham and his company, Simpa Networks. Call it “rent-to-own solar.”

Needham is a serial tech entrepreneur whose online advertising company BidClix made its way into the portfolio of Microsoft. As a doctoral student in economics at Cambridge, he was obsessed with the reasons customers will shell out for certain products and not others. One of the questions that always bugged him was, “Why don’t I own solar panels?” The reason, he determined, was the high up-front costs.

Imagine if mobile phone service was sold like solar energy. From an operator’s perspective, it would have made great sense to try to sell customers 10 years of phone calls in advance, so as to quickly earn back the money invested in building cell towers. But the person who suggested such a strategy would have been fired immediately, Needham says.

“You want to charge people for what they value, not the technology that’s providing it,” he says in a telephone interview.  Cont'd...

Wildfires and Solar Panels

A look at how wildfire air pollution can affect the power output of solar panels.

PVinsights: Polysilicon Rout Sends Downstream Components Slumping

The slump of polysilicon price has initiated since late August as buyers buying power has been significantly hampered due to slashed downstream demand and prices that they could not bear with high-priced raw materials and threaten to cut more polysilicon procurements. A previous attempt to sustain polysilicon prices in China has failed and the polysilicon suppliers in China have lowered price drastically in order to lessen its piled-up inventories as well as to secure limited orders. Moreover, as the quarterly financial accounting process closes at the end of September, polysilicon suppliers are having compounded pressures to dump excess stockpiles, pushing down polysilicon prices further.

SPI 2016 - Array Technologies Leads in Proven Tracker Technology at SPI

ATI will be joining solar industry leaders in Las Vegas next week

Ballard Inks Fuel Cell Module Deal, Expanding into China's Guangxi Province

Ballard Power Systems today announced the signing of a purchase order from Shenzhen UpPower Technology Co., Ltd., a leading fuel cell bus systems integrator in China, for the supply of 10 FCveloCity®-MD 30-kilowatt fuel cell power modules.

Edisun Microgrids Launches PV Booster™ Solar Tracker to Transform Economics of Commercial and Industrial Rooftops

Breakthrough technology yields 20 percent better economics than conventional fixed-tilt installations

Leading clean-energy nonprofit E4TheFuture hires two new directors

E4TheFuture, a leading nonprofit focused on clean, efficient energy solutions, announces the completion of its core team with the hiring of two senior staffers: Director of State Policy Susan Buchan and Director of Clean Energy Valuation Julie Michals.

kWh Analytics Raises $5 Million Series A, Launches New Insurance-Backed Production Guarantee to Make Solar Bankable

The new product, called PowerLock, increases equity returns of solar projects by up to 50 percent and is backed by Standard and Poor's "A" rated global insurance carriers

Why large-scale wind power is so hard to build

Michael McDonald, Oilprice.com via USA Today:  he Bureau of Land Management faces a problem and wants to shake up the rules around wind farm approvals. The problem is straight-forward on its face, but difficult to reconcile logically: Why are so few new large-scale wind projects being built? Despite the fact that nearly everyone – environmentalists, government regulators, and business interests –wants to build more wind farms, precious few are making it over the goal line.

Since 2009, the Obama Administration has approved 46 wind farm projects that would cover a proposed 216,356 acres of public land. Yet only 15 of these 46 projects have made it into operation. The rest are stuck in limbo with years of mandatory environmental analysis ahead or have been cancelled outright.  Cont'd...

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