Observing the renewable energy transition from a European perspective

Archive for the month “September, 2012”

Thin Film Solar

[Oerlikon Solar]

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Aerial Video Of Solar Projects

[BEK imaging]

Here Comes The Sun — Documentary

English spoken Dutch documentary about the rise of solar power.


124 Watt Rollable Solar Panel


Top Countries Installed Solar Power Per Capita


Mecca To Become First Solar City In Saudi Arabia

Mecca, the birthplace of Muhammad, and Islam’s holiest city, has plans to become the first city in Saudi Arabia to run completely on solar power. The Saudi Arabian government has said that it will invest $109 billion to establish a strong solar industry across the nation. The King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy program is the jewel in this crown, and aims to develop 41 gigawatts of solar capacity over the next 20 years. 25 gigawatts will be installed in the form of solar thermal plants, and the remaining 16 gigawatts will be supplied by photovoltaic panels.


Global Market Outlook for PV Until 2016

Report from the European Photovoltaic Industry Association predicts the PV market untilo 2016. Main findings:
• Under the right policy conditions PV can continue its progress towards competitiveness in key electricity markets and become a mainstream energy source.
29.7 GW of PV systems were connected to the grid in 2011, up from 16.8 GW in 2010; PV is now, after hydro and wind power, the third most important renewable energy source in terms of globally installed capacity
21.9 GW were connected in Europe in 2011, compared to 13.4 GW in 2010; Europe still accounts for the predominant share of the global PV market, with 75% of all new capacity in 2011
Italy was the top market for the year, with 9.3 GW connected, followed by Germany with 7.5 GW; Italy and Germany accounted for nearly 60% of global market growth during the past year
China was the top non-European PV market in 2011, with 2.2 GW installed, followed by USA with 1.9 GW
• The number of markets achieving more than 1 GW of additional PV capacity during 2011 rose from three to six: Italy, Germany, France, China, Japan, USA


New Solar Efficiency Record In Switzerland – 22%

22% efficiency using amorphous and monocristalline silicon together, using the commonest – and therefore cheapest – crystalline cell (called “p-doped silicon”). Magic word: heterojunction. Achieved by a team from the EPFL in Neuchatel/Switserland. Secret behind this heterojunction: application of an infinitesimal layer – one hundredth of a micron – of amorphous silicon on both sides of a crystalline silicon wafer. In the medium term an investment of 2500$ should be enough to provide a household of 4 with sufficient electricity. Efficiencies attained thus far were 18-19% at best using the best quality monocrystalline cells. Production costs for a square meter are expected to decrease to 100$. Under Swiss circumstances such a panel could generate 200-300 kWh per year.


Low Degredation Of Solar Cells Over Time

20-year-old installation of Kyocera 945-watt solar modules in France still performs with a high power output level. The evaluators found that, after 20 years, the panels’ power production declined by only 8.3%. Usually an economic lifespan of 20 years is attributed to solar panels. Due to the gradual nature of deterioration however, this means that the panels could last many more years before becoming useless.


Masdar – The City of the Future

Youtube text: Robert Llewellyn visits Masdar City, a city fully sustainable on green energy. Masdar City is a project in Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates. Its core is a planned city, which is being built by the Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company, a subsidiary of Mubadala Development Company, with the majority of seed capital provided by the government of Abu Dhabi. Designed by the British architectural firm Foster and Partners, the city will rely entirely on solar energy and other renewable energy sources, with a sustainable, zero-carbon, zero-waste ecology.


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