California's Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program, for example, is more than half way through implementing its target of supporting installation of more than 6200 charging stations, and Tesla, Nissan, and Rabobank/SolarCity have been developing their own charging networks in California.
Solar PV has been one of the fastest growing energy sources in the US over the past six years, with a compound annual growth rate of over 50% since 2007.
19,000 visitors visited to learn about the latest technology innovations, financing models, business best practices and policy and incentive programs that are contributing to the growth of the U.S. solar industry. Products from nearly 600 exhibitors from 22 countries were on display on all three levels of Moscone West, representing the entire system of solar technology and showcasing advances in solar cell and module technology, balance of system components, solar heating and cooling and energy storage. AltEnergyMag.com has once again partnered with Intersolar to bring all the industry news and exciting new products to our eMagazine and help our readers make sense of this key tradeshow. Here we have compiled a list of some product releases from this years show. Check out our special Intersolar 2013 Newspage for Exhibitor news.
The solar energy industry is in high gear and at Solar Power International 201 3 (SPI ’13), October 21-24, McCormick Place, Chicago, Illinois, participants can plug into the technologies, personal connections and professional insights that give rise to new business and learning opportunities. Widely regarded as the can’t-miss industry event of the year, SPI draws over 15,000 professionals in solar energy and related fields, from 75+ countries. One in six attendees comes to this global event from outside the United States. Attendees include manufacturers, installers and contractors, distributors, engineering firms, utilities, government representatives and policy makers, investors and financiers, architects, builders and developers—anyone who needs to stay on top of the latest developments in solar energy. Nearly 700 companies representing the entire solar industry spectrum exhibit on 300,000 net square feet of space. Exhibits highlight the latest in PV cells and modules; balance of systems; material and equipment suppliers; distributors; integrators; installers and solar service providers; thermal solar technologies; concentrating solar power (CSP) and solar thermal electric and concentrating PV (CPV); publications; and an additional array of products and services. SPI presents a full range of opportunities to make connections in Chicago and throughout the solar energy industry. Build your network face to face in SPI’s general sessions, conference sessions, receptions and training workshops—or as you explore the dynamic exhibit floor. SPI is presented by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA). Unlike other solar conferences, all proceeds support the expansion of the U.S. solar energy market through SEIA's and SEPA's year-round research and education activities, as well as SEIA's advocacy, research and communications efforts. Join SEIA or SEPA by October 18, 2013, to enjoy a membership discount on Solar Power International 2013 registration as well as many member benefits year round. For details on association membership, visit www.seia.org or www.solarelectricpower.org . For networking, ideas, making deals and discovering opportunities, solar energy professionals head to one event: Solar Power International 2013. Register today!
The Solar Thermal System at Oxford Gardens
CSI data shows that 4,000 new homes were built with solar in California last year. SunPower observes that that's 10 times the number built in 2006, when the housing construction market was booming.
So far 2013 has been an exciting year for fuel cell buses, with a host of news reports from the U.S. and abroad.
If oil and gas is a profoundly dynamic phenomenon, then so too must be environmental risk and conflicts over natural resources—and we are not getting the full picture from the mainstream media, according to Michael T. Klare, professor of peace and world security studies at Hampshire College
Alpaca Farm with five star holiday cottage reaps rewards of Renewable Heat Incentive and boosts green credentials
Marine energy technology leader Minesto develops world's first simulator for anchored flying underwater vehicles
Nordic marine energy technology leader Minesto has developed a simulator to aid the development of its Deep Green marine power plant. The simulator has been developed in-house by Minesto’s own research and development department, and is in essence based on two existing open source programs: one for commercial flight simulation and one for marine vehicle simulation. The end result is an analysis and simulation tool called HAMoS, Hydrodynamic Analysis and Motion Simulation, believed to be the first in the world to simulate the movements of a flying tethered underwater vehicle. It will be used to predict how Minesto’s marine power plant, Deep Green, moves subsea in various ocean environments and depending on the plant’s design. Minesto’s research, development and testing staff can change a number of variables in the power plant’s design to simulate and optimize its performance. The simulator can be used to predict Deep Green’s behaviour and power performance in different real-life site conditions (i.e. the strength and direction of the currents). Deep Green resembles a sweeping underwater kite, comprised of a wing and a turbine, which is secured to the seabed with a tether and moves with high speed in an 8-shaped path in the tidal or ocean current. Deep Green produces 100% renewable tidal energy.
Outlining a new climate change plan on a warm day in Washington, President Obama said Tuesday his State Department should not sign off on the Keystone XL oil pipeline if it increases greenhouse gas emissions. "The national interest will be served only if the project does not significantly exacerbate the problem of carbon pollution," Obama said in a speech at Georgetown University. Keystone is not part of the climate change plan that Obama said includes new rules to restrict "the relentless dumping" of carbon pollution from power plants, as well as the promotion of renewable energy sources and new energy-efficiency standards. Warning that climate change threatens future generations, Obama told his college audience that "the question is not whether we need to act" because "the overwhelming judgement of science ... has put all that to rest." The question is whether the nation has "the courage to act before it is too late," the president said. Almost all of the president's plan involves executive actions that do not require congressional approval. Obama would have a difficult time getting climate change legislation through Congress, given a U.S. House run by Republicans and a Senate in which the GOP has enough members to mount effective filibusters. Republicans and members of the energy industry criticized Obama's climate change plan, saying it will lead to higher utility bills and less development of reliable energy.
Disputes over the use of small-scale solar power are flaring across the nation, with utilities squaring off against solar-energy marketers over rules for the growing technology. Until now, the fights have been mainly before state regulators. In California, Louisiana and Virginia, utilities have sought to cut what they claim are unfairly high payments they are required to make to owners of homes or larger buildings with solar systems. At issue in an Iowa lawsuit is whether solar-system marketers can sell electricity in territories where local utilities have exclusive rights to customers. Such an arrangement isn't allowed or is under dispute in many states, limiting solar firms to sales of panels to homeowners and businesses. But if they win in Iowa, it could pave the way for fledgling solar industries to expand in other states. The case is being watched closely elsewhere in the Midwest, where policies granting utilities a monopoly on electricity service are one reason a solar-construction boom hasn't occurred, unlike in states such as California and New Jersey. Utilities "are proponents of renewable energy," said Barry Shear, president of Iowa's Eagle Point Solar LLC, but only "if they own the energy assets and the electrons flow through their grid and they can bill you." In March, an Iowa District Court judge said Mr. Shear's 18-employee company could sign power-purchase contracts in the Dubuque territory of Alliant Energy Corp., one of the state's largest utilities. Under the disputed deal, Eagle Point would own solar panels on the roof of a Dubuque municipal building and sell power to the city at a rate similar to Alliant's.
Although the market for small wind power systems has been in existence for 30 years, there are many signs that the industry is reaching a critical juncture. The past 18 months have seen a number of bankruptcies and acquisitions among small wind turbine manufacturers. Nevertheless, the overall opportunity for small wind power remains strong across a variety of applications in both developed and developing countries. According to a recent report from Navigant Research, the worldwide market for small wind systems will reach $723 million by 2018, with $3.3 billion in cumulative sales from 2013 through 2018. "Small wind is growing primarily as a result of state and national incentives, including a burgeoning market in the United Kingdom," says Dexter Gauntlett, research analyst with Navigant Research. "The question is: Can the small wind turbine industry grow to more than just a niche market, and attract the investment required to drive down costs? Given the precipitous price declines for solar photovoltaic modules, distributed solar PV is increasingly competitive with small wind."
Alternative energy has been a hot button issue for the last 50 year's and investors have always found a way to play this heated market. In the last decade, there has been the launch of a number of ETFs that offer a specialized basket of products for alternative energy exposure, with 12 of these funds still in operation today. Below we outline two green energy ETFs that have been battling for investor attention since inception: Powershares WilderHill Clean Energy Portfolio ( PBW, A ) and Guggenheim Solar ETF ( TAN, C+ ). Holding between $172 million and $107 million in total assets under management each, these funds are easily the largest green energy funds currently on the market. PBW holds a mix of companies that are focused on greener and generally renewable sources of energy, as well as technologies that facilitate cleaner energy. TAN, on the other hand, is aimed specifically at the solar power industry, investing in companies that produce equipment, fabricate solar panels, or provide a direct service to this market. Newer to the market, TAN started trading in spring 2008, while PBW was already three years into the market. Both funds were hammered in the years following the financial crash, with record outflows in PBW while TAN saw its first few years since inception with negative returns. A number of funds closed during this three-year window, but it is a testament to these funds that they were able to remain in operation. While alternative energy ETFs have had a difficult few years, with the markets coming out of their long-term lull, these ETFs have seen a massive influx of funding and returns. Alternative energy is moving back into the spotlight as economies around the world stabilize, and investors should see this strong trend continue as long as the market remains on track. Full Article and images:
News Releases and Announcements from the Show in Europe.
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Solar & Wind - Featured Product
The NeON R module features "Back Contact" cell technology delivering an entirely black panel that is aesthetically pleasing and energy efficient. The cell's seamless, surface blends perfectly into nearly all rooftop designs while the module's electrodes are positioned on the rear of the cell. Using LG's N-type cell structure, the panels produce 365W of energy, up to 7.3kWp, compared to 5.8kWp of the p-type cell. The module's new design minimizes LID, thereby delivering a longer lifespan and increased energy output.