‘New and strange properties’ provide a boost to energy storage

MIT scientists have developed a class of liquid electrolyte with properties they say could open up new possibilities for improving the performance and stability of lithium batteries and supercapacitors.

Stitching together the grid of the future

A vision of a decentralized, renewable-powered electricity grid is being brought a step closer by scientists at the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Their project, Autonomous Energy Grids, aims to take an overarching look at the solutions that will power this grid of the future, and to fill any gaps that appear between them.

A close look at nature could lead to cheaper hydrogen

Scientists at the Australia National University have observed a key stage in the process of photosynthesis which could be copied to greatly increase the efficiency of sunlight-powered water splitting processes used to produce hydrogen.

IHS Markit: Global EPC market grew 34% last year

China’s slowdown in installations last year was more than made up for by expansion elsewhere, according to IHS Markit. The news comes amid increasing market fragmentation – with the biggest engineering, procurement and construction business boasting less than 3% market share – and internationalization, with almost half of the top 15 companies operating across more than one region.

JinkoSolar records 469.3 W monocrystalline module

JinkoSolar today announced that it has set a new efficiency record for a monocrystalline PERC PV cell at 24.38%, and produced a module that achieved 469.3 W power in testing conducted by TÜV Rheinland. The Chinese module manufacturer also equalled a record claimed just last week by Trina Solar, of 24.58% conversion efficiency for an n-type monocrystalline cell.

JinkoSolar shipped 11.4 GW of modules in 2018

Chinese module manufacturing giant JinkoSolar today published its financial results for the full year 2018. While the company achieved an impressive 16% growth in shipments over the previous year, its total revenue took a 5.4% hit compared to 2017, thanks to falling module prices throughout the year.

Long read: Reflections on a soiled module

Having quickly proven their performance boosting potential and durability, anti-reflective coatings are now found on the majority of modules rolling off the world’s production lines. Today, coating suppliers are looking to tackle losses from soiling as well as reflection, and working to keep up with cost reductions and extended lifetime expectations at module level. Older modules, installed without a coating, could also be set to benefit from their latest innovations.

New model for calculating bifacial boost

Belgian research institute imec has developed a new simulation framework it says can calculate the expected output of a bifacial PV system. The model could help improve developer understanding of the best system configurations for bifacial, and foster confidence among investors by providing a precise prediction of energy yields.

Long read: Staying afloat, whatever the weather

From a little known niche just a few years ago, floating solar has quickly grown to more than 1 GW of installed capacity worldwide, and a source of great hope for the industry’s future, particularly in countries where space for solar is at a premium. pv magazine spoke with experts from leading floating PV test centers in Singapore and the Netherlands to outline the challenges still faced by floating PV as the technology moves towards major growth.

German scientists develop new process for stable perovskites

A team of researchers from Germany’s Martin Luther University Halle Wittenberg has developed a new approach to perovskite cell production, which they say could result in better stability and longer lifetimes. The team also made detailed observation of the perovskite’s formation and decay, which could help to inform further research into high performance solar cells.

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