Power & Energy Solutions

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The Mediterranean Solar Plan - a necessity, not an optionBenita Ferrero-Waldner, EU Commissioner for External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy, makes an impassioned plea for the diversification of solar initiatives in Europe.{pagebreak}When Russia cut gas supplies to Ukraine in 2006, European supplies were not seriously affected. When it did so this year, European households suffered. This was another wake-up call - if one were needed - that enhancing energy security in Europe is an increasingly pressing concern, and one that needs a European, rather than national, response.The events earlier this year underscored the importance of diversifying our energy imports in terms of energy mix, origin and transportation routes. All of this we are seeking to do. If we are to meet our 20/20/20 targets, it is clear that this energy diversification strategy must include a significant shift to renewable energies and in particular solar.Solar presents significant potential advantages, if we make the right investment in research to ensure that it becomes commercially viable and cost effective as soon as possible. As diversification into renewable energy becomes no longer a matter of choice - but of necessity - it abundantly clear that we must make these investments. 

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Trina Solar Limited, a leading integrated manufacturer of solar photovoltaic products from the production of ingots, wafers and cells to the assembly of PV modules, founded in 1997, announced its financial results for the fourth quarter and fiscal year 2008.{pagebreak}Full Year 2008 Results Financial and Operating Highlights    -- Solar module shipments were 201.01 MW, compared to the Company's       previous guidance of 200 MW to 206 MW, an increase of 164.8% from 2007    -- Total net revenues were $831.9 million, an increase of 175.6% from 2007    -- Gross profit was $164.4 million, an increase of 143.2% from 2007    -- Gross margin was 19.8%, compared to 22.4% in 2007    -- Net income for the full year was $61.4 million, an increase of 71.7%       from 2007    -- Earnings per fully diluted ADS for 2008 were $2.37, compared to $1.51       in 2007    -- Secured module contracts which are expected to generate approximately       300 MW in 2009 module shipments    -- Ranked in the top two of 14 international solar module manufacturers in       TÜV Reinland's Energy Yield 2008 for the testing period from September       1 to 30, 2008, as reported in January of 2009"Despite the challenging global economic and financial climate, we are pleased with our

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 A company built on simple solutions to complex issues, Eurotron offers a complete solution for the photovoltaic module manufacturing process for backside contact cells. They've developed a flexible production line which can adapt to your customised production needs,{pagebreak}and in doing so, have pioneered a 100MW line for the future. PES asked company spokesman, Bram Verschoor, to explain more

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Solar power history will be made in Southern California, after it was announced that Southern California Edison and Israeli firm, BrightSource Energy, have signed the world's largest solar energy deal.Now awaiting approval from the California Public Utilities Commission (this could happen by as early as 2013), the Israeli-California sun project will power almost one million California homes.{pagebreak}Israel Kroizer, the CEO and president of BrightSource, says that when completed, it will be the world's largest solar energy project. Some 1,300 megawatts of energy will be created, with the first plant to be built in Ivanpah, California, which is expected to generate 286,000 megawatt-hours per year.The project will also inevitably create more jobs in the region. "It's the biggest solar energy project ever signed," Kroizer claims, and when complete, it will be the largest solar energy plant in the world, he adds.Last year, BrightSource created an industry sensation when it launched its pilot plant in Israel's Negev Desert. Employing thousands of tiny mirrors called heliostats, BrightSource unveiled the Luz Power Tower - the LPT 550 - to reflect sunlight from the heliostats onto a boiler atop a tower. Built with water-conserving principles in mind, the BrightSource system uses air-cooling to convert the

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5th PV Industry Forum in Munich, May 25 - 26, 2009International trends in photovoltaics at the PV Industry Forum The photovoltaics market in flux: growing production capacities and altered political and economic parameters{pagebreak}Future developments, prospects and technological trends in the international photovoltaics market will be the focus of the 5th PV Industry Forum which will take place on May 25 and 26 at the International Congress Center in Munich (ICM). Production capacities are growing across all sections of the photovoltaics industry's value added chain. The potential for cost reduction which this brings with it and the changing political economic parameters, particularly in Germany and Spain, will affect the future development of the international photovoltaics market.Strong growth in 20082008 saw the continuance of the 2007 boom in the photovoltaics industry. In Germany, the total installed capacity of all solar power installations rose from 3.8 Gigawatt peak (GWp) in 2007 to around 5.3 GWp in 2008. When the German Renewable Energies Act came into force in 2000, the overall capacity just about totaled 100 Megawatt peak (MWp).In 2008, the amount of new solar power capacity installed worldwide almost doubled, reaching approximately 4 GWp. With a world market share of 20 percent, Germany

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The price of solar panels could fall by as much as 40 per cent by the end of the year as huge increases in polysilicon supplies lead to a sizable fall in production costs for solar panel manufacturers.Industry analyst New Energy Finance reported that polysilicon prices hit a peak of $400 per kilogram last summer, but as investments to increase capacity have come online, prices have dipped to between $30 and $40 per kilogram and experts are agreed they are likely to carry on dropping.{pagebreak}"A massive increase in silicon supplies is coming through at the moment that will lead to a fall in solar module prices," argues Angus McCrone, chief editor at New Energy Finance."In one way it's bad news for solar companies because it will put pressure on margins as prices fall, but in another way it will trigger lots more demand from both large solar project developers and consumers as well as from businesses installing rooftop panels."The predictions come as a consortium of China-based solar firms called on the Chinese government to reduce the allowance it offers by 75 per cent. The companies believes that, with the industry benefiting from falling polysilicon and production costs, the government should

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Tokyo Electric Power Co. will build a solar power plant in the state of California through its subsidiary Eurus Energy Holdings Corp., according to a recent report. The company apparently plans to begin operations at the 1000 kilowatt plant by 2010 on a site yet to be selected, the Nikkei business daily reported.{pagebreak}Eurus, already engaged in wind power generation in the United States, wants to take advantage of incentives expected to be provided by the new U.S. government to boost solar power generation nationwide, Nikkei said.Tokyo Electric is one of four Japanese corporate giants moving into the U.S. renewable energy market with solar and wind power technologies. Petroleum wholesaler Showa Shell Sekiyu KK will start selling solar cells in the United States in June at the earliest after establishing a sales network there, the report said.The unit of Anglo-Dutch giant Royal Dutch Shell will ship cells from a plant now under construction in Miyazaki prefecture, southern Japan.Sanyo Electric Co. is set to expand the solar cell production capacity of its Mexican plant, which assembles products for the North American market, by 150 percent to 50,000 kilowatts, the daily said.In anticipation of growing U.S. demand, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. will also

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Southfield, MI - Schreiner ProTech is now marketing an array of specialized labels and identification-preparation equipment for solar panels and components. Drawing on its extensive solar product experience in Europe, Schreiner is nowaggressively seeking new customers in North America for its UL/CSA-approved solar labeling solutions.{pagebreak}The manufacturing of photovoltaic (PV) solar modules makes exacting demands of marking technology materials and systems.  Labels used for production control, track-and-trace, branding, and as power-rating and nameplates, must be able to permanently withstand extreme UV rays and weather conditions-many for the life of the PV module. In addition, they have to meet a number of legal requirements, such as UL and CSA standards.Today, every single solar PV module is marked with an individual code for production control purposes and traceability. The code is applied in a clearly visible location at the front of the module, and must retain its legibility-even after years of exposure to UV radiation. Schreiner ProTech has developed an Embedded Label for this application. It is TTR-printable, dimensionally stable, and is applied directly to the ethylene-vinyl-acetate (EVA) sheet or a bus-bar of the solar module.Schreiner Power Labels have to comply with exacting legal requirements. They mostly

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The notion of Space-Based Solar Power (SBSP) is not new. There has long been talk of 24-hour-a-day solar power beamed from space via microwave to any point on earth. However, a new company named Space Energy, Inc. believes it well placed to develop SBSP satellites to generate and transmit electricity to receivers on the Earth's surface. To do this, the company plans to create and launch a prototype satellite into low earth orbit (LEO).There's only one hitch: this concept is based on as yet unproven technology.{pagebreak}SBSP was mooted over 40 years ago by scientist Dr. Peter Glaser. Since then, in response to periodic energy crises, the plan has been re-evaluated from time to time by the U.S. Department of Energy, NASA, major aerospace companies and countries such as Japan and India.Solar power satellites are massive arrays of photovoltaic panels assembled in orbit, which utilise microwave radio waves to transmit solar power to large receiving antennas on Earth. The resulting power can either supplement, or be a substitute for, conventional electricity sources.The advantage of putting large solar collectors in geosynchronous Earth orbit (GEO), about 36,000 kilometres (22,500 miles) above Earth, is that it uses the constant and unobstructed output of the

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Scientists at Berkeley University (USA) have this week released research revealing that alternative raw materials, such as iron pyrite - or Fool's Gold - could offer a far cheaper alternative to silicon for solar panel manufacturers.The rapid growth of the global solar market has been repeatedly hampered by shortages of silicon, which is used to make the semiconductors found in many solar panels. But now Berkeley researchers have identified 23 promising semiconductors that could be used as an effective alternative. They concluded that 12 of the alternatives are more abundant than silicon, while nine would be cheaper to manufacture.{pagebreak}"We started looking at new materials because people often assume solar will be the dominant energy source of the future," said Cyrus Wadia of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, who led the research. "But current solar technology may not get us there in a time frame that is meaningful, if at all. We must turn our attention back to basic science research if we are to solve the problem."Currently, the most viable commercial alternative to silicon-based solar panels are so-called thin film panels, typically made from cadmium telluride or copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS). However, critics claim that resources of these raw

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