Category: PES Essential

Offshores Pressing Problem Funding

Europe’s energy leaders are in agreement – more offshore wind is absolutely vital if binding targets are to be met. There’s just one slight issue – who’s going to pay for it? PES investigates… The European Union has committed to a legally binding target to meet 20% of its energy consumption through renewable energy by… Read more »

US offshore: ready for takeoff

After a very late start, momentum is finally building in the American offshore wind energy industry. With 14 projects in advanced stages of development, the latest outlook for wind is extremely positive. But can the country compete with its global competitors? We investigate. Taken together, the planned projects hold out the potential to deliver some… Read more »

Let’s Talk About Targets

Today’s solar industry is built on carbon targets, but with several key countries set to miss their 2020 obligations, we ask: is our industry in jeopardy? Policy uncertainty and grid integration risks are driving a slowdown in global renewable energy deployment, especially in OECD economies, according to a new International Energy Agency (IEA) report. Clean… Read more »

Setting the solar record straight?

The International Energy Agency (IEA) has been criticised for underestimating the potential of solar photovoltaics in its analyses. In this (personal) report, the author, himself a solar industry executive, compares IEA projections with a number of other sources and up to date industry data. He claims that the IEA consistently operates with much too pessimistic… Read more »

12 months of positivity – and a springboard for growth

Every year, we dissect the Renewables Global Status Report to discover the status of the PV industry, and this year is no different. Just published, the report is compiled by an international network of more than 500 contributors, researchers, and authors. It provides an unparalleled viewpoint of the market – and this time, there is… Read more »

Assessing national competitiveness in the global solar race

The globalising solar industry is at a transformative point, benefiting from big technological gains and beset by big geopolitical fights. As the industry develops over the next decade and beyond, who will win, who will lose and how will those shifts play out? PES investigates… To illuminate the potential contours of tomorrow’s global solar industry,… Read more »

Shining lights

Just 20 cities, representing just 0.1 per cent of the land area of the United States, account for 7 per cent of solar PV capacity in the country. These top 20 cities contain more solar power today than was installed in the entire U.S. just six years ago. PES investigates. Solar power is on the… Read more »

Building a stable future

Every year in PES, we take a closer look at the work of the European Wind Energy Association, and in particular its Annual Report. Hot off the press, it provides an accurate snapshot of the association and signposts challenges and opportunities. We’re delighted to present a few of the highlights, including an interview with the… Read more »

Wind comes of age

With 10MW turbines on the horizon, stable policy conditions, improved investment conditions and a dependable infrastructure, wind is about to enter its fastest ever growth period. We examine the mitigating factors and explore what is set to be a golden period for wind. Let’s kick this feature off with a look at the figures. The… Read more »

REN21: 10 years on

In June 2004, delegates from 154 countries converged in Bonn, Germany, for the world’s first government-hosted international conference on renewable energy. REN21 emerged from that process to become the first international organisation to track renewable energy developments. We take an in-depth look at how far the organisation has come, the strides it has made in… Read more »

Transforming a global energy system

PES takes a look at the current state of renewable energy rollout, considers wind energy’s increasing role, and discovers what’s in store for the next few years.   Since 2010, more than a quarter of a trillion dollars have been invested annually in renewable energy, energy efficiency and supporting technologies. Global investment in clean energy… Read more »

U.S. wind: boom before bust?

For U.S. wind power, the last 12 months was both the best of times and the worst of times. That’s the conclusion from the new Wind Technologies Market Report recently released  by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and prepared by DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL). We take a look at the latest trends… Read more »

Seizing a golden opportunity

It’s a curious contradiction that, while wind is a renewable, non-fossil fuelled, energy source, some global wildlife organisations have put up massive resistance to its expansion. Refreshingly, the industry has finally received a vote of confidence from a major body – the National Wildlife Federation. We take a look at their recently-published recommendations about making… Read more »

Wind’s world of opportunity

The Global Wind Energy Council has recently identified the key commercial battlegrounds where wind power can make gains in the next four years. We present an exclusive look at their global findings, together with a special focus on offshore.  On the whole, the market diversification trend which has emerged over the past several years intensified… Read more »

Breaking The Mould Alternative Materials For PV Modules

When it comes to the cutting edge of solar innovation, Building Integrated Photovoltatics (BIPV) tends to lead the way. Alex Savidis, Applications Manager of Solar Capture Technologies explores the latest technologies – and crucially, materials – being used. You could be forgiven for thinking that all solar panels have to be flat, rectangular, and made… Read more »

Solar Generation On Landfill Sites A Winning Formula

A resources solution that has been successfully deployed on a number of closed sites in Germany, solar farms located on waste sites could offer the ultimate win/win for renewable energy generation.Words: Adrian Lea, Technical Director, Wardell Armstrong With soaring energy prices, challenging emissions targets and the demand for greater security of supply, any imaginative and… Read more »

Word on the tweet

We unveiled this feature and in our last issue, and it’s taken our readers by storm. Are YOU up to speed when it comes to the wonderful world of solar? We prescribe regular doses of PES and the occasional look at Twitter for diverse nuggets of information like these… The White House @WhiteHouseFACT: Solar power… Read more »

Maximising solar PV portfolio returns

Words: Ian Rose, Professional Services Director at PassivSystemsThe way we monitor solar PV panels is the difference between an investment fully realised and an investment exposed to unnecessary risk, argues Ian in this essential column… The solar market has endured a rollercoaster ride as government incentive levels have fluctuated, driving large peaks and troughs in… Read more »

Cutting costs in PV

Glass innovations come into focus at a testing time for the industry. PES investigates… Although the costs for solar power have come down considerably lately, photovoltaics are still unable to compete with conventional energy sources. The “last mile” to competitiveness will therefore prove difficult for the sector: cell and module production have already been rationalised… Read more »

Is Germany losing its energy edge?

The German Energiewende (energy transition) – once an international model – threatens to disintegrate. Now is the time to develop a common European energy strategy, experts say. PES reports. “Germany would be well-advised to start looking beyond the edge of its nose on energy policy”, warned Bert Rürup, former “economic wise man” and director of… Read more »

Storage: Solar’s big talking point

In a speech at this year’s Energy Storage Conference and Exhibition, Prof. Dr. Eicke R. Weber, Director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems, stated that: “The energy storage market is in the same situation today as photovoltaics was ten years ago; only development in the area of storage must proceed significantly faster.” Why?… Read more »

The Big Debate

In a first for PES, we have gathered together an exclusive panel of experts from some of the world’s foremost solar associations. They offer unparalleled insight and analysis and dissect the issues that are uppermost in the minds of the industry’s thought leaders. Enjoy. PES: Welcome to the magazine. Can you tell us a little… Read more »

America: Leading from the front

If there has been one solar success story of the past 12 months, it’s been America, which has steadily become a PV powerhouse. We present an exclusive breakdown of all the salient facts and stats, courtesy of the very latest SEIA/GTM Research U.S. Solar Market Insight report. The U.S. solar industry has much to celebrate… Read more »

Where solar business gets connected

With events spanning four continents, Intersolar is the world’s leading exhibition for the solar industry and its partners. The show’s objective is to increase the share of solar power in the energy supply, and by providing first-rate services, it endeavours to bring businesses, technologies and people from the most important markets around the globe together…. Read more »

Farewell, fossil fuel

Solar power has won. Or at least – if its current trajectory continues – it will begin usurping oil as the energy source of choice within a few short years. But will the current trajectory continue? And surely oil isn’t going to go down without a fight, is it? PES investigates. Solar power has won… Read more »

Solar innovation

Australia to pilot new power plan One of the largest solar companies in the world has chosen Australia as the proving ground for a new model of power production that promises to give householders more control – and cut bills.‘What do you do when the sun doesn’t shine?’ It’s been one of the criticisms levelled… Read more »

Editor’s note

It’s not often that I begin an Editor’s Note by urging readers to ignore what I’m 
about to write, but I’m tempted to in this issue of PES. The fact is, our lead feature 
is a game-changer and if you read nothing else in this issue, then that’s where you should be heading. Right now…. Read more »

Full concentration on solar cells

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE are working on a new generation of multi-junction solar cells in an industrial project with the French firm Soitec. These have the potential in the future to attain efficiency levels of over 47 per cent under concentrated sunlight. PES takes a look… A bright summer’s… Read more »

And now for something completely different…

The INVELOX promises to revolutionise wind power generation via a system that apparently produces 6 times the electrical power than traditional wind turbines. PES asks: will 2014 be the year when the wind industry begins saying farewell to blades? Daryoush Allaei thinks the wind power industry has it all wrong. Rather than turbines high in… Read more »

Setting a research agenda for the Wind Energy Technology Platform

When we first reported on the pioneering TPWind platform in PES, it was little more than an EC pipedream. Since then, it’s grown into one of the most important funding programmes in Europe, and enjoys considerable influence throughout the sector. We take a look at the latest developments, courtesy of Henning Kruse and his talented… Read more »

Reflecting an industry in motion

The WINDPOWER Conference & Exhibition always reflects the times, and these are busy days for the industry indeed. It’s appropriate, therefore, that topics such as operations, technology, and non-traditional wind energy purchasers will all figure prominently at WINDPOWER 2014, which takes place May 5-8 in Las Vegas, Nevada. An educational program that leaves no stone… Read more »

US wind: never stronger

The American wind energy industry responded to the extension of the Production Tax Credit in 2013 by starting construction on an historic and unprecedented number of new wind farms, backed by Power Purchase Agreements with electric utilities on a record scale by the close of the year. But it’s not just the utilities backing wind… Read more »

Wind and water: working together for the greater good

A precious resource, water is one of the EU’s most valuable commodities. And yet it is being used unremittingly throughout the continent, with up to 40% consumption in power production alone. The EWEA has examined the situation and offers a credible alternative – wind energy, which uses little to no water… Water is a precondition… Read more »

The big debate

Is the small wind industry dead? Are governments doing enough to support the wider sector? What remaining work needs to be done to develop an effective supply chain? These are just three of the questions that are tackled by our five specially-selected wind experts in our exclusive roundtable this issue… PES: Welcome to the magazine…. Read more »

Identifying Opportunities In Africas Clean Energy Corridor

Africa’s impressive economic growth in recent years, reflecting a growing population as well as rapid economic development and diversification, calls for massive investments to ensure sufficient future energy infrastructure and supply. The newly-identified ‘Clean Energy Corridor’ has been earmarked as a possible source of this supply – with significant prospects for wind energy. We take… Read more »