DNV acquires Australian solar data specialist Solcast


Norway-based energy consultancy and assurance provider DNV has acquired Australian solar irradiance data and forecasting specialist Solcast in a move which the Sydney-based company said will allow it to further expand its digital and data-driven services.

Solcast uses global weather satellite imagery, machine learning, and historical and live data on solar irradiance to produce more than 600 million new forecasts every hour while providing real-time access via an application programming interface (API). Its forecasting system and data set is used by solar power producers, utilities and grid operators to determine their solar resource availability at any given time.

Solcast founder and Chief Executive Officer James Luffman said DNV’s acquisition of the company, for an unspecified sum, will allow it to improve its forecasting models and unlock additional value for its customers.

“DNV is investing in Solcast and providing expertise and other resources,” he said. “The result is a huge boost to our effectiveness and impact.”

“This partnership will bring the world’s leading solar irradiance and forecasting API to an even larger global audience, whilst maintaining the same level of service that our customers expect.”

Remi Eriksen, DNV group president and chief executive officer said digital products like those provided by Solcast are key to unlocking the potential of solar.

“Solar forecasting will enable the renewable energy market to grow and accelerate the global transformation to a clean energy future,” he said.

Solcast can reportedly produce more than 600 million new forecasts every hour.

Image: Solcast

DNV’s Energy Transition Outlook (ETO) forecasts that by 2050 global electricity production will more than double and 30% of all electricity will be provided by solar.

“Our ETO forecasts solar PV and wind are already the cheapest forms of electricity in most locations and by 2050 they will grow 20-fold and 10-fold,” Eriksen said. “Digitalisation is an important enabler of the energy industry and a key component to scaling solar to the levels needed for a greener energy future.”

The acquisition will take effect immediately although Solcast, which already has offices in Sydney, Asia, Europe and the Americas, will continue to operate under its current name. The company’s existing management and staff will remain in Australia and there are no immediate changes planned for customers and partners.

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