UNI-Solar PVL-124 124W Phot-Voltaic Module Amorphous Laminate-solar panel

UNI-SOLAR photovoltaic laminates (PVL) are flexible and lightweight laminates made exceptionally durable by encapsulation in UV stabilized polymers.The polymer encapsulation is partially constructed of durable ETFE, (example, Tefzel) a high-light-transmissive polymer. These solar panels rock. Their photo-voltaic material is an amorphous laminate and at 124 watts they pack quite the punch power wise.

solar a

solar a

solar a, yes, it is that time of year that we need to be aware of the solar a. Most people ignore this but we know that the usual suspect is not what you really were thinking. Solar a… where do you stand?

So once again one this precipices of a new supermoon we are again worried about something or worried about nothing.

How is the solar a side of the fence that you live on treating you? Do you ever wonder if your missing some sign that seemed so obscure but now seems relevant….

Happy almost supermoon to you as well and a wonderful planatery alignment as well! Best solar a that one can wish for and please pass the solar a along

solar a , the future
solar a, a company to watch
solar a, a third world hello to the main stay civilization

Iranian Students Design, Develop Solar-Powered Car

Iranian Solar Car designed and built by studentsTEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian university students unveiled a car that runs entirely on solar energy.

The students from the vehicular research department at the University of Qazvin designed and developed the vehicle named ‘Havin’ which means ‘shining sun’.

Havin is five meters long and two meters wide and is capable of reaching speeds of over 130 kilometers (80 miles) per hour.

The students unveiled the fiber glass vehicle at the Tehran Permanent International Fairground on Thursday.

The vehicle weighs 160 kilograms (352 lb.) and is fitted with six square meters of silicon solar cells.

The environmentally-friendly project comes in line with Iran’s greater policy to reduce energy consumption across all sectors.

Wind and Solar Could Supply 25 Percent of Oahu’s Electricity

Solar Power in Hawaii is taking off
Solar Power in Hawaii is taking off

by Joshua S Hill – “The findings of this study show it is feasible to integrate large-scale wind and solar projects on Oahu but also have value beyond Hawaii. Both large mainland utilities and relatively small and/or isolated grids that wish to integrate significant amounts of renewable energy while maintaining reliability for their customers can learn from this study,” said Hawaii Natural Energy Institute (HNEI) director Dr. Rick Rocheleau, regarding a study which shows that 500 MW of wind energy and 100 MW of solar power could supply more than 25 percent of Oahu’s projected electricity demand.

The Oahu Wind Integration Study (OWIS) was conducted by Hawaii Natural Energy Institute (HNEI) at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, General Electric (GE) Company, and the Hawaiian Electric Company (HECO).

Oahu Wind Integration Study Findings

The study found that the combined 600 MW of renewable energy could eliminate the need for approximately 2.8 million barrels of low sulphur fuel oil and 132,000 tonnes of coal each year, while still maintaining a reliable system, if the following recommendations are incorporated:

  •  Provide state-of-the-art wind power forecasting to help anticipate the amount of power that will be available from wind;
  •  Increase power reserves (the amount of power that can be called upon from operating generators) to help manage wind variability and uncertainty in wind power forecasts;
  •  Reduce minimum stable operating power of baseload generating units to provide more power reserves;
  •  Increase ramp rates (the time it takes to increase or decrease output) of Hawaiian Electric’s thermal generating units;
  •  Implement severe weather monitoring to ensure adequate power generation is available during periods of higher wind power variability;
  •  Evaluate other resources capable of contributing reserve, such as fast-starting thermal generating units and load control programs.

“To reach our renewable energy goals we need to use all the resources available to us. For Oahu, this includes the utility-scale solar, roof-top solar, waste-to-energy and on-island wind that we are pursuing. But on-island resources are not enough to meet Oahu’s power needs,” said Hawaiian Electric executive vice president Robbie Alm.

“We know that more solar power is possible on Oahu than was studied by the OWIS. However, this baseline study is an essential first step for the Interisland Wind Project. It shows that the technology may present challenges but these can be overcome. The questions now are financing, environmental impact and whether the affected communities can live with the project with community benefits.”

The wind energy not produced on Oahu would be brought in from Molokai and Lanai.

Colorado: Three large solar power arrays to be built in Fresno

Fresno Colorado solar power array sites
Fresno Colorado solar power array sites-source:Fresnobee.com

Construction is about to begin in southwestern Fresno County on three large arrays of solar power panels to produce electricity for Pacific Gas & Electric Co.

The three projects will be built near the towns of Five Points and Helm. They will be completed by October and generate a combined 50 megawatts of electricity — enough to meet the needs of about 15,000 homes, according to PG&E.

The sites represent the first big push in PG&E’s efforts to develop solar projects that it will own and operate. PG&E expects to build 250 MW of power-producing capacity over the next five years.

The utility has hired Cupertino Electric Inc. to build two of the plants: a 20 MW plant on a 130-acre site just west of Helm, and a 15 MW project on 160 acres south of Five Points.

The third plant, a 15 MW project on 160 acres southwest of Five Points, will be built by SOLON Corp. for PG&E.

Each site will have thousands of crystalline silicon photovoltaic panels that convert sunlight directly into electricity. PG&E already owns the vacant land for the plants.

“The Central Valley holds tremendous potential as a source of clean energy for California,” said Mike Jones, a power-generation manager for PG&E. “Our solar projects in the region are a win for the local economy and for the state’s environment.”

PG&E spokesman Blair Jones said the Fresno County projects should create about 500,000 hours of paid work. Jones said the contractors will do their own hiring, but “it’s our goal that they use local residents to build these facilities where possible.”

Autumn Casadonte, a spokeswoman for San Jose-based Cupertino Electric, said her company expects to employ more than 200 people over the course of its work on the two sites. Most of those will be hired from within Fresno County, where the unemployment rate of about 17% is well above the state and national average.

A representative for SOLON, an Arizona-based subsidiary of Germany’s SOLON SE, said the company will also use local labor to build its project.

The three PG&E arrays will rank among the biggest solar photovoltaic plants built in the Valley when they begin producing electricity this fall. They will rival 20 MW and 19 MW plants under construction by Eurus Energy America near Avenal, in western Kings County.

Continue reading this great article at  the FresnoBee.com

New multilayered solar cell boosts efficiency-Solar power gets boost

multi-layer solar cellSolar Junction’s solar cell is like a tiny layer cake able to crank out more power per inch than most cells.

The 4-year-old company yesterday said it expects to start production of its high-efficiency solar cells by early next year in its home town of San Jose, Calif. It is also awaiting word in the next few months on an $80 million loan from the Department of Energy, which would give it favorable financing to expand its current demonstration plant to produce 250 megawatts worth of cells per year, said co-founder Craig Stauffer.

Solar Junction cells are designed to be fitted into concentrating photovoltaic (CPV) solar collectors. Originally used in space, CPV systems concentrate the light hundreds of times using mirrors and lenses onto a small but relatively efficiency solar cell. They are typically mounted on racks to follow the sun in desert areas and are used for installations up to 50 megawatts.

The company, which was spun out of Stanford University, last month said that the National Renewable Energy Laboratory certified its cell to operate at 41.4 percent efficiency. For comparison, silicon solar cells are in the range of 15 percent or 20 percent efficient at converting sunlight to electricity.

These types of cells, called multijunction cells, achieve those higher conversion rates by using different materials than the traditional silicon cell and multiple semiconductors within a single package. During manufacturing, there are multiple layers of material deposited onto a gallium arsenide substrate, with each layer optimized to convert a different portion of the sunlight’s spectrum.

“In essence, you have three basic subcell materials that take in some light and pass the rest to the next. They are connected serially inside the device just like battery cells,” Stauffer explained. There could be up to 20 layers of material used on each cell which is usually a square of about five millimeters, or just a fraction of an inch.

The main customers for these multijunction cells are CPV solar makers such as Amonix and Concentrix Solar in Germany. But even though this technology has been around for years, it still hasn’t become as established or widely used for wholesale electricity production as regular flat solar panels.

Multijunction cells are more complex and expensive. But Stauffer said that the costs of CPV systems with those cells are getting more attractive due to efficiency gains and higher levels of concentration. CPV solar collectors can now concentrate light 1,000 times, compared to 500 times in the past year or two, he said.
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10 Million Solar Roof Law, Stuck in Congress, Could Get Boost from DOE Program

The DOE’s newly announced plan to make solar affordable offers Sen. Sanders a chance to breathe new life into his languishing ’10 Million Solar Roof Act’
By Maria Gallucci
The Department of Energy’s new SunShot Initiative to make solar energy as cheap as coal has given fresh hope to industry enthusiasts. And it may even give life to a nearly dead effort in Congress to put solar panels and water heaters on 10 million of America’s roofs by 2020.

The 2010 legislation by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) hasn’t had much momentum since the Senate’s Energy and Natural Resources Committee approved it in July, and November’s Republican gains in Congress has not helped the measure along. But experts say Energy Secretary Steven Chu’s SunShot Initiative may give the Ten Million Solar Roof Act new political legs.

Shayle Kann, managing director of solar research at GTM Research, said that the DOE plan could make the Sanders’ bill more politically palatable, because it would drive down the cost of solar installations. It aims to finance the installation of up to 40,000 megawatts of new solar energy.

“These are two parallel but distinct programs. They could play together very well because — to the extent that the SunShot initiative is successful — it will lower the [financial] incentives that are required per project for the Ten Million Solar Roof Act,” he told SolveClimate News.

“Any program designed at reducing the cost of solar installations will be a service to any deployment program by lowering costs” to the government,” Kann said.

Jared Blanton, a spokesperson for the national Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), said that the solar energy plans are aligned because “they both are focused on removing needless regulatory barriers that prevent Americans from going solar.”

The DOE initiative unveiled on Feb. 4 aims to accelerate research and development in its solar energy programs — valued at around $200 million annually — to reduce the total installed cost of solar electricity to $1 per watt by 2020, a 75 percent drop from today’s rates.

The idea is that unsubsidized solar power could then compete with the wholesale rate of electricity generated by fossil fuels that emit climate-changing greenhouse gases.

As part of the program, the agency also awarded $27 million to nine solar technology companies that are trying to make solar more affordable.

“Magic will occur when [solar] becomes cost-competitive with any form of energy,” Chu said at a Feb. 9 renewable-energy conference in Washington. “And when that happens without subsidies, it is going to shoot all over the country and all over the world.”

‘SunShot’ Puts New Energy Into Solar Bill

SunShot, a name inspired by President John F. Kennedy’s 1960s “moon shot” goal, will work with government agencies, the energy industry and research laboratories to reduce installation costs, spur growth in the solar energy market and pave the way for new U.S. manufacturing.

The initiative offers Sanders a chance to breathe new life into his bill after it was approved by the Senate’s Energy and Natural Resources Committee last year. The senator sits on that committee and the Environment and Public Works Committee, and he also chairs a green jobs subcommittee. The legislation has 16 co-sponsors — all Democrats.

“I look forward to working with the Obama administration to incorporate elements of the new solar initiative into the Ten Million Solar Roofs Act to make the legislation even stronger,” Sanders said in a Feb. 4 press release. “We have an opportunity to create hundreds of thousands of good-paying jobs and make America the world leader in solar energy.”

During his State of the Union address last month, President Obama proposed building 20 million solar installations nationwide by 2020 — double the target of Sanders’ initiative — although the SunShot doesn’t address that goal and Kann said the president’s speech was void of the nuts and bolts of policies to get there.

The Ten Million Solar Roofs Act would require $250 million in investments in fiscal year 2012 and an additional $500 million per year from 2013 to 2021. A competitive grant program would help state and local governments boost solar energy deployment in homes, schools and businesses by overcoming barriers such as high expenses and red tape.

By linking his bill with SunShot, and positioning the act as an integral part of the cost-cutting initiative, Sanders is hoping to win new support in Congress. Congressman Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.) introduced companion legislation last session in the House, and is expected to do the same this year.

Cutting Government ‘Green’ Tape

Will Wiquist, a spokesperson for Sanders, told SolveClimate News that the senator’s legislation would potentially adapt to include SunShot’s focus on creating a more efficient solar-permitting process for home installations.

He cited a January report by solar financing company SunRun, which estimates that local inspection and permitting fees can add up to $2,500 to the cost of each residential photovoltaic (PV) solar system.

“The solar industry report recommended a competitive grant program to encourage adoption of best practices, an idea which can be incorporated into the Ten Million Solar Roofs legislation to support Secretary Chu’s goal of making solar competitive with fossil fuels by the end of the decade,” Wiquist said.

Kann said that SunShot is likely to receive a more immediate push from the Obama administration because it is a DOE initiative, whereas the Ten Million Solar Roofs legislation could be slow to wend its way through Congress.

However, he added, SunShot alone cannot achieve its target of reducing solar electricity costs by 75 percent.

“You can’t just do it with one program, especially when that one program is designed heavily around R&D. There has to be some kind of deployment program as well, whether it is the Ten Million Solar Roofs Act or something similar,” he said.

According to SEIA figures, the U.S. placed fourth in solar PV installations in 2009, behind Germany, Italy, and Japan. The country produces 6 percent of solar system components worldwide, while China accounts for seven of the top 10 solar manufacturers worldwide.

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Photovoltaics-Other Thin Films

Other Thin Films
A number of other promising materials such as cadmium telluride (CdTe) and copper indium diselenide (CIS) are now being used for PV modules. The attraction of these technologies is that they can be manufactured by relatively inexpensive industrial processes, certainly in comparison to crystalline silicon technologies, yet they typically offer higher module efficiencies than amorphous silicon. New technologies based on the photosynthesis process are not yet on the market.

Amorphous Silicon

Amorphous Silicon
Amorphous silicon cells are composed of silicon atoms in a thin homogenous layer rather than a crystal structure. Amorphous silicon absorbs light more effectively than crystalline silicon, so the cells can be thinner. For this reason, amorphous silicon is also known as a “thin film” PV technology. Amorphous silicon can be deposited on a wide range of substrates, both rigid and flexible, which makes it ideal for curved surfaces and “fold-away” modules. Amorphous cells are, however, less efficient than crystalline based cells, with typical efficiencies of around 6%, but they are easier and therefore cheaper to produce. Their low cost makes them ideally suited for many applications where high efficiency is not required and low cost is important.

Thick-film Silicon

Thick-film Silicon
Another multicrystalline technology where the silicon is deposited in a continuous process onto a base material giving a fine grained, sparkling appearance. Like all crystalline PV, this is encapsulated in a transparent insulating polymer with a tempered glass cover and usually bound into a strong aluminium frame.