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Made-in-WA cathode precursor plant gets underway

Construction has begun on a manufacturing pilot project to see battery-grade nickel, cobalt and manganese for precursor battery cathode materials (PCAM) in Perth. The facility is expected to be completed in early 2022 and is one of a number of developments that will look to establish Western Australia (WA) as a materials supplier to the growing battery manufacturing industry.

Industry veteran warns of looming supply chain disruption

Australia’s module supply landscape could experience a supply shock as legislation looms to stamp out the use of forced labor. Chris O’Brien, Maxeon Solar Technologies VP for the APAC region says that the measures that have left modules stranded at the U.S. border could very well occur in Australia soon.

Saturday read: Stage set for truce in Australia’s climate culture war

The highly polarised debate regarding renewable energy and action on climate change that has too long been a feature of the Australian political landscape could change, and change quickly, says Saul Griffith. The entrepreneur, scientist, and energy analyst is adding author to his job description next month with the release of his book “Electrify”, and he’s betting on a rapid transformation of the discussion within Australia as the advantages of “electrifying everything” become clear.

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Sunday read: What’s in store for storage

As solar and wind make up larger portions of the energy mix, energy storage is becoming an increasingly important piece of the puzzle in keeping electricity networks running smoothly. And as battery costs fall, new business models are emerging to increase the value of battery energy storage projects for both grid operators and project owners. Focusing on two leading countries – the United Kingdom and Australia – pv magazine looks at what’s in store for large-scale energy storage.

Saturday read: In conversation with UNSW’s Anna Bruce on distributed transformation

The time is now for the energy consumer, says Anna Bruce, as energy “prosumers” produce, consume, and provide electricity and grid services in previously unimagined ways. Bruce, a senior lecturer at the University of New South Wales’ School of Solar Photovoltaic and Renewable Energy Engineering (SPREE), leads work on the role of distributed energy resources in the energy transition, analysing firsthand the dizzying level of complexity it brings.

Saturday read: rethinking degradation

PV module making is a brutally competitive industry. And for Slovenian module maker Bisol, in business since 2004, one of the keys to success has been to remain focused on the value its products deliver to the customer. And as company founder and CEO Uroš Merc explains, in 2021 this means reimagining module degradation.

Sunday read: All that glitters is HJT

The devil is in the details, as they say, and when it comes to the next generation of mass-produced, high-efficiency PV cells, silver costs may be devilishly hard to reduce. Making things worse, prices for the precious metal are now heading in the wrong direction.

Sunday read: Too big to handle

There has been a flurry of activity within the PV cell manufacturer landscape over the past 12 to 18 months, and it’s largely been in one direction: bigger. But as large-format modules arrive on the market, questions are being raised as to how long the trend can continue and when bigger becomes, quite simply, too big.

Saturday read: Clever by half

Enhanced module appearance and power output can be achieved by a smart cell interconnection technique Longi is employing in its Hi-MO5 module series. But as with all new technologies, there are potential pitfalls.

Sunday read: Unlocking lightweight, flex applications

Not all rooftops can bear the weight of glass PV modules. Some others have curves and shapes ill-suited to uniform, bulky panels. Flexible modules have long been advanced as the solution here, however the keys to unlocking this potential have proven elusive.

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