Before Puerto Rico had a chance to recover from Hurricane Maria, in 2017, it was rocked by earthquakes and then, in September 2022, the island was struck again – this time by Hurricane Fiona. These disasters severely impacted Puerto Rico’s infamously fragile power grid, but have emboldened local communities to take power into their own hands through solar and battery storage, and increasingly in the form of microgrids. Compelled by catastrophic circumstances, Puerto Rico must now push toward energy resilience and in the process may see itself become a model not just for other islands, but mainland grids as well.
Australia’s Fortescue Future Industries is reportedly exploring an offtake agreement with what will be the world’s largest PV project as it advances plans to build a $9 billion (USD 6 billion) mega green hydrogen production facility in Brazil.
Sungrow told pv magazine at the recent Intersolar South America event in Sao Paulo that its cumulative delivered capacity in Latin America now stands at 9 GW, with 6 GW of the total delivered to Brazil alone.
In other news, German energy company Uniper said it will test a new salt cavern built for hydrogen storage, while Serbia and Hungary signed a memorandum of understanding to collaborate on renewable hydrogen.
Australian renewable energy tech start-up Okra Solar has raised $3 million to scale up distribution of its solar-based hardware and software solutions and electrify more than 290,000 off-grid homes in Nigeria in the next three years while expanding its operations in Haiti and other countries.
Prefabricated solar array manufacturer 5B has completed a $30 million Series B capital raise with their existing shareholders to help fund continued development of the company’s flagship modular Maverick solar array and accelerate the progress of the company’s pipeline of multi megawatt projects.
Lift Energy Storage Technology is a proposed long-term storage solution that relies on elevators to bring solid masses to the tops of buildings in charging mode. It then lowers the same mass to produce electricity in discharge mode.
Spanish renewable energy company Acciona is using a robot dog, instead of drones, to monitor a solar park in northern Chile. The device has a built-in thermal vision system that generates thermographic reports on the status of the different PV plant components, as it walks between the panel rows following a programmed route.
While there are still many uncertainties as to the way in which hydrogen trade might evolve and change economic ties and political dynamics between countries, experts agree that green hydrogen can bring winds of change to the global energy arena. According to the International Renewable Energy Agency, significant geoeconomic and geopolitical shifts are just around the corner.
Scientists in Brazil have found that photovoltaic modules may be a repository of specialised microbes in tropical regions. According to them, these micro-organisms may be used in sunscreens, pigments for processed foods, chemicals, textiles, pharmaceuticals, and cosmetics.
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