Solar PV


Solar Panel Efficiency Simplified

At my company we have a saying, “no fat, no fluff, just meat”. Your time is precious. Our job is to make efficient use of your time by sifting through the “noise” and providing you with the core details you need to make a decision. The solar industry is bursting at the seams with noise


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 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,


Vivint Solar bullish despite losses and weaker Q4 install forecast

Vivint Solar, the newly floated US residential PV installer, has forecast a decrease in deployments in the final quarter of the year, blaming the prospect of harsh winter weather conditions. In a conference call to discuss Q3 results yesterday, Vivint’s CEO Greg Butterfield said he was confident the company would meet or exceed its 150MW


Wind Of Change: European Grid Prepares For Massive Integration Of Renewables

The ancient city of Rome welcomed an important new initiative for the large-scale integration of grids and of renewables sources into Europe’s energy mix, with nearly 40 leading organisations from research, industry, utilities, transmission systems operators meeting in the city on the 30th of October to announce their united goal to find the BEST PATHS


The Media Will Never Get Ivanpah Right

BrightSource Energy’s massive Ivanpah concentrating solar power plant began ramping up to speed in the Mohave Desert last February, busily cranking out solar-sourced electricity after years of planning and construction. Given the plant’s hefty Energy Department loan guarantee, Ivanpah has also been cranking out controversy from the get-go, with our friends over at Fox News



Community Program SolarPerks Opens Access to All NSTAR and Grid Ratepayers

BOSTON, MASS. – (October 23, 2014) Massachusetts’ favorable renewable energy landscape has set the stage for broad interest in individual solar energy production. Yet, historical solar programs have been available only to residents and businesses that own suitable rooftop space and feature long-term leasing arrangements. Clean Energy Collective (CEC), the nation’s leading community solar developer, announced today


2014 Solar Trends Report Shows Big Gains in Solar Installations, Green Jobs

At last month’s Solar Power International conference (as well as Intersolar before it), many discussions revolved around the growing importance of solar standards and best practices. While workforce training initiatives and regulatory reform aren’t nearly as alluring as “solar freakin’ roadways,” hot storage technologies, or stories of well-funded start-ups trailblazing the economy’s way, it is


What Does SunEdison’s Purchase of First Wind Mean for Big Solar?

Solar and wind are clean energy’s indisputable go-to resources. So it was just a matter of time before one company decided to deal in both. That company is solar (and now wind) provider SunEdison, which has, along with its renewable energy power plant operator TerraForm, announced the acquisition of U.S. standout First Wind for $2.4


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


What Commercial Solar Developers Need to Know about Yieldcos

There have been some basic descriptions of yieldcos in the trade press, but nothing has described what commercial solar installers need to know about this new legal structure or how it could impact their day-to-day business. This article will try to translate some of the buzz and address the questions that commercial solar installers will



Fool’s gold as a solar material?

As the installation of photovoltaic solar cells continues to accelerate, scientists are looking for inexpensive materials beyond the traditional silicon that can efficiently convert sunlight into electricity. Theoretically, iron pyrite—a cheap compound that makes a common mineral known as fool’s gold—could do the job, but when it works at all, the conversion efficiency remains frustratingly



Delhi prepares for net metering as India rooftop PV boom predicted

Electricity distributors, or ‘discoms’, in Delhi have been instructed by the Delhi Electricity Regulation Commission (DERC) to bolster infrastructure for rooftop solar customers. Two discoms owned by BSES and Tata Power Delhi have been directed to upgrade grid infrastructure as soon as possible so that rooftop solar customers can sell power they generate to the

Climate Watch


Apple, Google among Green Power Leadership Award recipients

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced the recipients of its annual Green Power Leadership Awards for achievements in advancing the nation’s renewable energy market and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The 19 Green Power Partners receiving the award were chosen from more than 1,300 partner organizations that comprise EPA’s Green Power Partnership, including utilities, renewable




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


Sweetwater Schools Make Major Commitment to Solar Power

The Sweetwater Union High School District in Chula Vista announced installation of solar power systems at 21 schools that will offset 60 percent of normal electricity demand. San Jose-based SunPower Corp. installed solar shade structures in school parking lots, taking advantage of underutilized space and providing needed shade. One ground-mounted system was installed at Mar Vista Middle School in San Diego, and a rooftop system

Heating & Cooling


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: 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 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