Solar PV

solar-panels-on-a-roof

Rooftop solar is just the beginning; utilities must innovate or go extinct

By now, most people are aware that solar power — particularly distributed solar power, in the form of rooftop panels — poses a threat to power utilities. And utilities are fighting back, attempting to impose additional fees and restrictions on solar customers. These skirmishes generally center on “net metering,” whereby utilities (forced by state legislation) pay customers with solar

wal-mart-solar

Big Box Retail’s Latest Bright Idea: Solar Power

Big companies are finally beginning to see the light. Over the past two years, the top 25 corporate solar users in America have more than doubled their capacity, according to a new report by the Solar Energy Industries Association. Cumulatively, these companies produced enough electricity last year to power more than 115,000 homes. Leading the pack by

off-grid-solar

Off-Grid Solar is Going to be HUGE

Everywhere you look, the off-grid clean energy market is booming. Sub-Saharan Africa is seeing 300 percent compound annual growth in off-grid lighting; Bangladesh is putting up 30,000 to 40,000 solar home systems every month; and d.light, a for-profit seller of solar lights, recently reached its 1 millionth customer. If these numbers haven’t raised the attention of institutional investors,

solar-panels-on-a-roof

Rooftop solar is just the beginning; utilities must innovate or go extinct

By now, most people are aware that solar power — particularly distributed solar power, in the form of rooftop panels — poses a threat to power utilities. And utilities are fighting back, attempting to impose additional fees and restrictions on solar customers. These skirmishes generally center on “net metering,” whereby utilities (forced by state legislation) pay customers with solar

Dartmouth, MA landfill photo by Greg M. Cooper / Borrego Solar

Solar Landfills: One Person’s Trash Is Another’s Treasure

Green Mountain Power just broke ground on a 2 MW photovoltaic plant in Rutland, Vermont. While some other large PV systems planned for the area have met with strong opposition(some residents worry large, ground-mount solar arrays will be an eyesore on the state’s pastoral landscape), this project seems to be welcomed with open arms. Why? It’s

Business

SolarWorld will conduct crystallization project research at its Hillsboro, Oregon, site as well as at its R&D facility in Germany.

SolarWorld to wins $4 million US grant for next-generation crystallization tech

The Department of Energy award is aimed at the development of crystallization technology for more efficient and affordable solar cells. SolarWorld has received a $4 million cooperative award from the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative to intensify development of a silicon mono-crystallization technology. The proprietary development has demonstrated promise to sharply reduce costs in

utilities-and-community-520

Community Solar Allows Utilities to Adapt, Thrive as Energy Landscape Evolves

Adaptability is the key to survival—both in nature as Charles Darwin observed, and in the business sector. As the solar industry continues to flourish, utility companies across the U.S. are beginning to witness how the traditional electric grid is transforming. As tens of thousands of residents have solar photovoltaic (PV) panels installed on their rooftops

green-bond

Green Bonds Expected To Top $100 Billion In 2015

Another strong quarter for issuances of green bonds has taken the year’s total up to $32 billion, more than double the total issued during 2013, and fuelling predictions that 2015 could see $100 billion worth of green bonds issued. Data from the Climate Bond Initiative published Tuesday claimed $9.2 billion green bonds were issued in

SolarWorld will conduct crystallization project research at its Hillsboro, Oregon, site as well as at its R&D facility in Germany.

SolarWorld to wins $4 million US grant for next-generation crystallization tech

The Department of Energy award is aimed at the development of crystallization technology for more efficient and affordable solar cells. SolarWorld has received a $4 million cooperative award from the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative to intensify development of a silicon mono-crystallization technology. The proprietary development has demonstrated promise to sharply reduce costs in

jim-callihan

Intersolar names Jim Callihan Director, Sales and Marketing North America

SAN FRANCISCO, October 14, 2014 – Intersolar North America, the most well attended solar industry exhibition and conference in North America, today announced the addition of Jim Callihan to its team as Director, Sales and Marketing North America. Drawing from nearly two decades of experience in the solar industry, Callihan will serve as a liaison

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solar-house-panels

The Relationship Between SREC Prices and Solar Leasing

Several forums, including this one, covering residential solar developments have commented on the volatility of SREC markets in some states. But few have yet to note the potentially tremendous impact on solar leasing, and residential solar adoption in general, in those SREC states experiencing severe fluctuations in pricing. You may have read how the New

Research

Cheaper silicon means cheaper solar cells

Researchers at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology have pioneered a new approach to manufacturing solar cells that requires less silicon and can accommodate silicon with more impurities than is currently the standard. Those changes mean that solar cells can be made much more cheaply than at present. A new method of producing solar

Policy

moniz-520

Energy Secretary Moniz Senate Majority Leader Reid Call Solar

Today both Department of Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D) spoke up for solar at the Solar Power International (SPI) conference at Las Vegas calling it critical to the US and its energy future. The remarks follow a new effort from the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) to extend the

CO2 watch

optimism-climate

Reasons to be Optimistic about a Global Climate Agreement

Despite a number of remaining hurdles, there have been several positive developments that support the idea that we may succeed in securing a global climate agreement in 2015. Adding to the optimism of UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres, we have seen constructive French diplomacy and national climate legislation in three countries. While there is much

Storage/Batteries

stem

Will Stem’s Battery Systems Combined With Kyocera’s Solar Boost Energy Storage Adoption?

The convergence of rooftop solar PV and behind-the-meter batteries continues. On Tuesday, Japanese solar module giant Kyocera announced it has teamed up with Stem, a startup that’s installed about 6 megawatts of behind-the-meter lithium-ion batteries, to “offer an integrated solar photovoltaic (PV) and energy storage solution for commercial power users.” Under the non-exclusive agreement, Stem will

Inverters

markt_pv_new_3-phase_microinverter

New 3-phase microinverter for large scale applications

Microinverter expert APS is now shipping its new 3-phase YC1000 inverter, which can handle 277/480 grid voltages and up to four PV modules per unit. Up to eleven units can then be linked in a single 15 A circuit. The maximum output of one YC1000 lies at 900 W and additionally it has integrated ground

Student Solar

Heating & Cooling

131008-solar-heating

In Focus: Solar Heating and Cooling

The greatest country on Earth, as it likes to bill itself, America is currently shut down, thanks to political intransigence and public ignorance. You’d think saving over $60 billion and creating thousands of jobs might wake it out of its gridlocked stupor. That’s what the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) says the United States could

Hot Water

promise-energy-hot-water-solar

Promise Energy: Solar Hot Water Rockstar

Promise Energy is a newcomer to southern California’s solar hot water market, but the company has wasted no time building a strong business. Promise, which is just a year old, has focused on solar hot water installations for multi-family affordable housing complexes in Los Angeles and San Diego, said spokesman Andy Mannle. “Solar hot water

Passive

passive-solar-home

Passive Solar in the Home

While solar power has become prevalent in the mainstream construction business in the past decade, passive solar design has been used around the world for thousands of years. Ceramic tiles and stones walls in the Mediterranean made it possible to keep homes cool even under the scorching heat of the summer sun. Likewise, small window

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