Power & Energy Solutions

The premier renewable energy publication

Since our jump into the façade market, we’ve encountered multiple technology-combinations on façades, which make a lot of sense and left us scratching our heads, thinking, why hasn’t this been done before? The answer turns out to be deceptively simple: PV hasn’t really been a building element until now. Seeing other companies use our products for smarter solutions, we have also investigated whether we can make our production process smarter to accommodate these many applications. Lighting and data communication Solarix Helmond was launched in December and marked the first combination of colored PV, LED lighting and data communication on the façade. Studio Solarix, the brains behind this façade, designed Solarix Helmond to communicate with its surroundings, visualize incoming data, and to generate sustainable energy without sacrificing aesthetics. The façade was fitted with multiple features to accomplish this. Sorba Projects manufactured the Alpolic backing, a folded aluminum/composite element that gives the façade its robustness and mechanical fixing to the rear construction. The folded element was designed together with Studio Solarix to hold the PV modules and hide LED lighting and cabling, whilst also remaining modular in its implementation. With a hook-type fixing, the elements can be easily detached for possible maintenance yet virtually

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With over 500 GW of installed capacity, photovoltaic power generation has long since become a global industry. Financial and economic interests depend on the reliable production of PV energy. The German PV expert, Solare Datensysteme, has specialized in monitoring PV power generation since 2007. Solar-Log™ data loggers and the Solar-Log WEB Enerest™ online portal offer PV plant monitoring and smart energy management. The Solar-Log™ system is designed to efficiently implement country-specific regulations for the connection of PV plants to the grid, and to safeguard solar investments through reliable monitoring. Meeting the ever-growing requirements with new technology The pressure for innovation is high in the PV industry. Constantly changing regulations, especially in the field of PV energy management, require regular enhancements and new functions. In addition, the demands placed on PV plants are constantly increasing, thus promoting technical progress. To meet the PV industry’s ever-growing requirements, Solare Datensysteme has developed the newest generation of energy management. The all new Solar-Log Base and Solar-Log WEB Enerest™ 4.0 will be launched in 2019. Safeguarding PV yields and investments Generally, a PV plant reliably produces electricity after its initial installation. However, like any other technical system, PV plants are not permanently free of errors and malfunctions.

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LOSER CHEMIE GmbH, Chemische Werke Tangermünde GmbH and FRESITEC GmbH are merging and bundling their expertise in to the LFFICIENCY Holding. Why? So far, many related technologies of recovery of precious raw materials have been located in various holding companies. In order to be able to offer our customers even more consistent solutions from a single source, it was necessary to merge the competences. Now all topics related to raw material recovery are combined under one roof. This makes the entire group of companies even more powerful and brings positive synergy effects for our customers. LOSER CHEMIE GmbH will be dedicated to the following business areas in the future: • Production of nanoparticles such as nano silver, nano copper and nano silicon • Production of alloys and special alloys based on silicon • Analysis in the ppb range by means of glow discharge mass spectrometry (GDMS) • Further development of methods for nondestructive treatment of used solar modules • Production, crystallization and remelting of silicon blocks and production of silicon shaped parts • Mechanical treatment, etching and cleaning of silicon and other hard-brittle metals • Production of specialty chemicals • Water treatment The headquarters of the company will be located at the former site of FRESITEC GmbH, in Freiberg on the

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‘Observe the evening red sky, which gives a reliable forecast of fair weather next day’. We’ve all heard this expression, which has a long history and valid phenomena for mid latitude regions. What is behind the ordinary bright and white sunlight, which is actually composed of a spectrum of colors that grade from violets and blues at one end to oranges and reds on the other end. Inspired by the ‘colors of the sky’ at an early stage EKO developed interest to provide measurement solutions to quantify solar energy distribution within the solar spectrum and spectral sky irradiance. Both affect many vital processes on earth and the diverse applications of solar energy feed our ideas and ambitions to develop new technology and measurement methods. How it started Global Irradiance has been measured with pyranometers for over the last hundred years, spectral measurement technology and turn-key spectral devices came much later. With a spectrometer it is as if you look at the distribution of light with a microscope and are capable to resolve all details of the spectrum. Not only the solar spectrum but also the characteristics of materials when exposed to light or particles in the sky, which interact with the spectral

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In the past decade, significant progress has been made to move the world towards a cleaner era in electricity production. Investment in renewables and advancing technology has resulted in a decrease in the overall cost of generating renewable power. In solar photovoltaic power, this decrease has been particularly marked. The cost of generation has plummeted by more than two-thirds, from 0.36USD/kWh to less than 0.1USD/kWh, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). The growth of renewables has been rapid, with total capacity of solar PV alone skyrocketing from 15 GW in 2008 to 385 GW in 2017, according to IRENA. But it still only makes up a small percentage of the total energy mix, meaning the overall impact on carbon emissions so far has been limited. The industry still needs to overcome a number of hurdles to increase the prevalence of renewables. Global challenges The low capacity factor of renewables comparative to carbon-based energy sources is one such challenge. With onshore wind generating 30% and solar 18% according to IRENA, the energy output is far more limited than we see with other forms of supply. In comparison, coal-fired plants saw capacity factors of 57.1%, and nuclear power plants reaching 99.7%

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Data is the cornerstone of every energy project. Whether it is wind resource data for the purpose of project development, operational data used in the monitoring and optimisation of an existing power plant or power performance data used in the verification and acceptance testing of existing or newly installed individual turbines, the need for low cost, accurate and reliable measurements has never been more important. Reducing risk and catering for more flexible business models The wind energy market is continuing to experience a process of change. The removal of subsidies onshore and the challenging pricing framework offshore is driving the need for developers and project owners to achieve commercially competitive stand-alone energy pricing across all new wind projects, whilst optimising the performance and extending the life of existing wind farms. As a result, demand for large volumes of high quality data is increasing as developers try to maximise project finances. To meet this ever increasing demand for high quality wind data, project developers, owner / operators and asset managers are turning to the now established wind Lidar-based measurement campaigns as a means to replace or supplement traditional mast-based measurements. Lidars have firmly secured their place in the Renewable Energy market as remote sensors

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We all know the importance of a good pit crew during a pit stop in a race. Team members work closely together to have the racecar optimized and back on the track as soon as possible. The same idea and spirit for service teams apply to wind turbines. ZF Wind Power’s service organization works closely together with wind turbine manufacturers, end users, and independent service providers to keep wind turbines up and running. Digitalization is a major facilitator of this unique service approach. Life in service: onshore, offshore, up-tower, in a workshop, under any circumstances and powered by analytics Wind farms are located in areas with diverse geographical and meteorological characteristics, so service teams need to be able to work on them under any circumstances. ZF Wind Power service teams are located in all wind hotspot markets and our technicians are trained to handle both down-tower workshop repairs as well as challenging up-tower interventions at different locations and in various situations. Onshore teams experience heat in the deserts, snow in the mountains, and fog in the wetlands. Offshore technicians will carry out airborne or amphibious interventions. But service is not limited to outdoor corrective service interventions alone. It starts with the integration of

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Theresa Trevor, Director of Marketing, SkySpecs brings PES her view on how to improve efficiency in our industry, by the use of data: not just its collection. Digitization is the answer. The past two years have revealed the near-term need for digital transformation of the energy industry in order to maximize ROI and minimize risk for owners. Digital transformation is the process of devising new business operations and processes that integrate digitized data, which results in a sustainable advantage. Currently there is a great deal of inefficiency embedded in the wind energy industry. Among those inefficiencies is the lack of data that allows stakeholders to make decisions and draw conclusions. Disparate data sources, a lack of tracking, and a fragmented communication chain can compound the problem. While steps need to be taken from multiple directions, it’s important to first be aware of the some of the challenges that are facing the industry with regard to digitization and data overload. The amount of data generated is growing faster than most in the industry can keep up - and it’s all over the place There are many technologies that are driving data acquisition faster than ever before. SkySpecs, as an example, collects blade data using

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At great heights, maintenance technicians around the world ensure that wind turbines reliably deliver energy to private households and industry. Employees cannot do without fall protection. In most cases, a rescue device stored on a wind energy plant is also indispensable for their safety. This is the only way they can leave their workplace quickly in an emergency. It is now possible to extend the service life of such rescue devices from ten years up to 20 years. SKYLOTEC, a German manufacturer of fall protection systems, offers a cost-effective and sustainable solution. When maintenance or repair work has to be carried out on wind turbines in Europe, workers are required to wear fall protection. This is essential, in order to protect oneself from the risk of a fatal fall from a height, when climbing onto wind energy plants, when working inside or outside the nacelle. When it comes to occupational safety, however, it is not only the employees who are called upon. Rather, the manufacturers, owners or operators of wind energy plants, wind farms or their service companies are responsible for the safety of their employees. This also applies to emergencies - such as when a person has to leave

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Wind power transport requires extreme precision during the planning phase. The route choices and changes required by the roads can be anticipated during the planning phase, but the changing weather conditions in northern Europe can still surprise. The northern conditions require special transport expertise and an ability to act even in unforeseen circumstances. When large transport is involved, success depends on seamless cooperation and a multitude of details. Changing weather may catch you unawares Last summer, the Finnish Transport Company Ville Silvasti Ltd, a company that specialises in wind power transport, participated with its partner in the transport of the largest onshore wind farm in Europe in Roan, Norway. The 70 or so kilometres of road from Monstad harbour, up to the wind farm in the highlands and surrounded by the mountains were geographically challenging due to the winding roads and the differences in altitude. ‘In northern Europe, the weather may be dry, rainy, cold and slippery all during the same day. Despite the capricious weather, you have to be able to carry out special transport safely,’ says Project Director Kimmo Saukkonen from Silvasti. The spring started exceptionally late, which delayed the start of the wind power transport in Roan. Even though there was

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