Top News

Live fast, die young: MIT study proposes use of 10-year panels

Research has found even short-lived, 10 to 15-year solar panels could provide enough return for bankable projects. The researchers believe panel costs, coupled with an industry mindset now fixed on the final solar energy price rather than costs per kilowatt installed, may open opportunities for PV products currently snubbed because of a short lifecycle.
Manufacturing

“Smart” solar farm switches on in northern NSW

While short of impressive in terms of size, the 9 MW project located near Moree is touted as one of Australia's smartest solar farms. The project features both DC optimisers and DC coupled battery for central inverters.
Technology

Tailem Bend granted approval for self-forecast generation

The 95 MW solar farm in South Australia has become the first semi-dispatched renewable energy project in the National Electricity Market to switch from the Australian Energy Market Operator forecasting tool to the self-forecasting model.
Announcements

Testimonial

pv magazine will be reporting live from All-Energy Australia

If you’re not able to get to Melbourne for All Energy this year, or you will be on site and want to keep in touch with everything that’s going on, pv magazine live is the place to be.

 

pv magazine live is a live blog channel that will feature all the latests news, announcements, gossips and images from the conference and trade show.

 

SMA is partnering with pv magazine as the gold sponsor of pv magazine live at All-Energy in 2019.

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Installations

CEFC helps Australian farmers tap clean energy to reduce costs and emissions

Agribusinesses now have access to a practical guide for reducing energy use and implementing cost-saving solar, biomass, wind and energy-storage technologies on the farm.
Energy Storage

Transmission transition: why some poles and wires can go into storage!

Australia’s unwieldy and slow-to-adapt transmission network is one of the greatest roadblocks to continued development of renewable energy projects. Strategically deployed storage on transmission lines offers a flexible alternative to the upgrade and m...
Technology

Long read: Gridlock grips Australia’s PV developers

From the September edition of pv magazine Australia’s large-scale solar boom faces serious constraints in the form of a long and skinny electricity network – making some ideal sites unattractive to project developers. Legacy regulations and a lack of...
Energy Storage

Hydrostor secures financing to complete Australia’s first compressed air storage facility

Canada's Hydrostor has closed US$37 million (AU$54,6 million) in growth financing. The company plans to use the funding to complete construction of the 5 MW/10 MWh Angas Project in South Australia and to advance its 2 GW pipeline of large-scale advanced ...
Installations

ARENA investigates use of renewables in industrial process heating

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) is allocating $460,500 in funding to investigate opportunities for using renewables in process heating in manufacturing.
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Press Releases

Appointment of New Australian Energy Regulator Chair

The Australian Energy Council congratulates Clare Savage on her appointment as Chair of the Australian Energy Regulator and thanks Paula Conboy for her leadership of the AER over the past five years.

Canberra’s second zero emissions school

The ACT Government is delivering on its commitment to ensure every young person has a place at a great local public school as well as its commitment to reducing carbon emissions.

EnergyLab relaunches acceleration program for later-stage clean energy startups in Australia

From February 2020, Australia's clean energy innovators with some customer validation to show for their efforts so far can apply for support in the next 9-month EnergyLab accelerator program.

Not Business as Usual for Australia’s Clean Energy Industry

Australia’s clean energy industry needs to get behind Not Business As Usual, an alliance of more than 600 businesses supporting the Global Climate Strike, a national day of action where students, young people and adults will participate in nation-wide rally against climate change.

Opinion & Analysis

Featured

On prices, technology and 2019 trends

A maturing PV market does not automatically deliver certainty in terms of technology roadmaps and industry dynamics. Crystalizing trends and anticipating developments is the business of analysts, so pv magazine assembled four of solar’s best to talk about prices, technology and market-defining policy developments.

Victorian solar rebate causes mayhem in the solar industry

The Victorian Labor Government announced in August last year a $1.3 billion “Solar Homes” package to assist homeowners in installing solar PV systems. The scheme will be offered to 770,000 Victorian households for the next 10 years and is in addition to the Federal STC ‘rebate’.

Vietnam’s 2019 commissioning rush

Vietnam had already successfully commissioned 1.5 GW of utility-scale PV at the end of May this year, and there is no sign of this slowing down, with another 2 GW teed up for June 2019. The breakneck speed in development is making Vietnam a powerhouse in the region in installed capacity, even nipping at the heels of Australia. Rystad Energy’s Minh Koi Le looks at the state of play in the Vietnamese solar market.

BHP to link executive compensation to reductions in emissions generated from the use of its products

Evaluating and reporting Scope 1-3 emissions is a landmark commitment, showing leadership towards the implementation of the Paris Agreement

Solar prices up 13% in Victoria in July 2019

The Solar Price Index for July 2019 as published monthly by Solar Choice noted a 13% rise in residential solar prices in Victoria following the re-opened rebate scheme being snapped up in the first 3 days.

Large clusters of solar power stations

In the last of a series of blogs, solar pioneer Philip Wolfe looks at areas where solar generating stations are clustered together, without the coordination afforded by organised solar parks.

Markets & Policy

Featured

ANU set to provide blueprint for Australia’s renewable export industry

The Australian National University (ANU) has launched a new research project to provide a blueprint by which Australia can look to install itself as the renewable energy powerhouse of the region. The project raises both political and feasibility questions about Australia’s economic future.

NT sets zero emissions target and backs itself for a solar century

The Northern Territory (NT) Labor Government has launched its draft Climate Change Response, a comprehensive and informed plan to reach net zero emissions by 2050. The NT is looking particularly to solar, as “Solar is the cheapest form of new electricity generation, and the NT has one of the best solar resources in the world.”

Credits & discounted rates for smart charging encourages EV uptake

Electricity retailer Powershop is encouraging the uptake of Electric Vehicles (EVs) with the introduction of a “Super Off-Peak Tariff”, a way for EV owners with smart meters to charge their vehicles at a reduced rate.

Redflow’s optimism despite recent revenue delays pays off

Redflow has won a significant order of its ZBM2 zinc-bromine flow batteries for mobile phone tower sites across South Africa in a deal which should see the Australian energy storage company receive revenue this calendar year.

Sonnen rolls out batteries to Australia’s most sustainable residential development

Aquarevo, VIC, Australia’s most water and energy efficient residential development, has seen its first instalment of sonnenBatteries at its showcase house, allowing residents to see the German designed, Aussie made energy storage technology in action.

‘Mono will supply 80% of the world’s solar by 2021’

Polysilicon manufacturer Daqo has announced the start of pilot production in Xinjiang and expects to ramp up to full output by the end of the year, doubling the company’s annual capacity to 70,000 MT. Some 90% of its poly will be mono by that stage and Daqo expects 40% to be suitable for n-type products next year.

Installations

Featured

GE to supply 100 MW/300 MWh battery for South Australia solar farm

GE Renewable Energy has been chosen to supply a massive battery for the 200 MW Solar River Project in South Australia.

Another big solar farm nears completion in vulnerable part of Victorian grid

The 106 MW Yatpool Solar Farm is nearing completion. The project is located in north-west Victoria notorious for grid limitations.

Canberra: First city outside Europe to transition to 100% renewable electricity

The Australian Capital Territory will soon become the first state or territory in Australia to achieve a transition to 100% renewable electricity and join a handful of major jurisdictions across globe that have made the move.

Long read: Is Neoen’s massive SA hybrid renewables plant feasible?

French renewable developer Neoen’s proposed hybrid power plant in South Australia is a monster, but is it a monster we can believe in? Along with industry experts we investigate the feasibility of Neoen’s Goyder South project.

Another Victoria solar rebate offering taken up in minutes

September’s second round offering was snapped up in under half an hour, signaling there is still a long way to go before supply catches up with demand.

Victoria introduces new solar farm guidelines to all planning schemes

New planning guidelines for large scale solar development in Victoria are now part of all state planning schemes. The Victorian government hopes to deliver consistent guidance in terms of choosing the right locations for solar development and encourage investment as it moves towards its 50% renewables goal by 2030.

Technology

Featured

The blackest black for more efficient solar cells

MIT scientists claim to have created a material 10 times more black than anything witnessed to date. It is said to be able to absorb more than 99.96% of incoming light and reflect 10 times less light than other superblack materials. The invention may be interesting for the development of black silicon PV technology and carbon nanotube-based solar cells.

ClearVue doubles solar PV glass size

Western Australia-based solar glass developer ClearVue has announced it is now able to produce larger floor-height sized power-generating insulated glass units and window panels. The company hopes this will open new sales opportunities.

‘The world has no chance of beating climate change if natural gas is part of the mix’

A report by Germany’s Energy Watch Group thinktank has said we would be better off sticking to coal and oil than switching to gas because emissions of methane, the most potent greenhouse gas, caused by gas extraction render any related carbon savings irrelevant.

ITP Renewables releases free open-source modelling platform for the energy transition

ITP Renewables has released Version 1 of open-CEM, an open-source modelling platform that allows users play out tailored made energy-transition scenarios on the National Electricity Market (NEM) for years simulated up to 2050. The platform is an extraordinary tool for investors, policy makers, project developers and the public.

Jolted: AEMO radically curtails output of five large solar farms

In reaction to voltage fluctuations in the Victorian and NSW 220 kV network, AEMO on Friday constrained the output of a number of large-scale solar generators by 50%.

Sunovate, like the hot air it puts to good use, is on the rise

After celebrating Sunovate’s first demo project, pv magazine Australia sat down with Co-Founder and Managing Director Cesira Leigh to talk all things Sunovate, how the rising Aussie solar PV innovator came to be, and where it’s going.

Manufacturing

Featured

SMA: We can’t be credible if we’re not sustainable

Credibility comes not just from offering products that generate clean electricity, but also from the way in which those products are manufactured, says SMA Solar Technology CEO Jürgen Reinert. Here, transparency and sustainability are key. That’s why one of the world’s largest PV inverter producers has partnered with pv magazine’s UP sustainability initiative. In the following Q&A, Reinert lays out what SMA is doing to step UP its green game.

Long read: Size matters

The latest development on the module front sees manufacturers adopting larger wafer sizes in order to reach the industry’s raised expectations for power output. Older “M2” wafers have been the standard in recent years but now appear to be on the way out. Several theories about optimal size are gaining ground, but the future direction of the standard is still far from clear.

Solar pioneer Pierre Verlinden: The big problem is apathy

On the first day of this year’s EU PVSEC conference, Adelaide-based veteran solar researcher Pierre J Verlinden won the Becquerel Prize for Outstanding Merits in Photovoltaics. The award recognized more than 40 years as a leading PV researcher in academia and at leading companies including Sunpower and Trina Solar. Its recipient, now a board member of Australian solar technology provider BT Imaging, spoke to pv magazine about what is needed from solar to stave off catastrophic climate change.

Eric Luo: China will see just 20-25 GW of solar per year through 2025

The GCL System chief executive made comments that fly in the face of an expected solar gold rush in China that analysts predict will start this month. Though rising overseas demand will address overcapacity fears, according to Luo, the soundbite is sure to chill PV boardrooms across the world’s biggest solar market.

Thermal battery producer heats up storage market

An Australian thermal energy storage company has reached in principle agreements to pilot thermal batteries in the telecommunication and eco-housing industries.

NAB stands behind Townsville battery gigafactory

Plans to develop a 18 GWh lithium-ion battery factory in northern Queensland have received a major boost with the appointment of National Australia Bank as financial adviser. With the feasibility study nearing completion, project proponents expect the development application to be submitted to Townsville City Council over the coming months.

Energy Storage

Featured

Western Australia opens Renewable Hydrogen Fund

The Western Australian Government has launched a $10 million Renewable Hydrogen Fund in a bid to drive a new job-creating industry harnessing the state's renewable resources. The fund's strategic focus areas will be export, remote applications, blending in gas network and transport.

Solar microgrid to power WA industrial park

A state government-funded projects touted as Australia’s first industrial renewable energy microgrid is to be developed at a new 120-hectare industrial park in Nambeelup.

ACT includes big battery in new wind, solar auction

The Australian Capital Territory Government has announced it will contract for the construction of up to 250 MW of new renewable energy generation and 20MW/40MWh of battery storage as it seeks to pave the way for the electrification of buildings and transport.

The energy transition is easily affordable but all hope of 1.5C warming will vanish in 2028

Technical consultancy DNV GL has published its Energy Transition Outlook 2019. While the electric vehicle, storage and renewable energy industries are likely to see significant rises in demand, the sobering conclusion is the world will miss carbon reduction targets by a long shot.

Massive hybrid renewable energy plant + storage set for South Australia

French renewable developer giant Neoen has announced plans for a massive hybrid power plant in South Australia featuring 1200 MW of wind, 600 MW of solar and 900 MW of battery storage. The project will depend heavily on the SA-NSW interconnector.

Innovators Amber Electric raise $2.5 million in seed funding

A group of Australian investors led by venture capital fund Square Peg has backed the Melbourne-based start-up which aims to revolutionise the way Australian households buy electricity by passing through wholesale rates.

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