The race is on as Panasonic snatches lead as most efficient solar panel

panasonic most efficient panel

Panasonic snatch the title for most efficient panel from Sunpower.

Well that didn’t take long! No sooner had we published our article on SunPower grabbing the unofficial prize of most efficient solar panel for commercial use, than Japanese manufacturer Panasonic surprises with a late sprint to the line.

The Japanese manufacturer has now jumped into the lead in the solar conversion Premier League with not one but two records. The new record, which was verified by the Japanese government-funded National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, is an eye-catching photovoltaic module conversion efficiency of 23.8 percent. This leaves SunPower’s previous record in the dust by a full percentage point. [Read more…]

Sunpower grabs lead in bid for most efficient solar panel

sunpower solar panels efficiency

Sunpower – the ‘Rolls-Royce’ of solar panels regain the ‘Most Efficient Panel’ Trophy.

It’s on for young and old in the battle for the prestigious title of the most efficient solar panel. For a number of weeks we’ve brought you commentaries on the remarkable breakthroughs achieved by Trina (here and here). Now Sunpower — the French-owned, US-based solar panel manufacturer — has stepped up to the plate with an announcement they have achieved a module efficiency rating of 22.8 percent for its X-Series solar panel. Another world record. [Read more…]

Trina Solar Panels take Tier 1 gong – but avoid the grey imports

trina tier 1

Trina Solar Panels. They’re jolly good.

Trina solar panels took the stage this week as the solar manufacturing giant was named the most bankable PV producer in the world.

The survey, conducted by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF), asked banks, asset managers, engineering contractors, consultants and independent power producers from across the globe which “module manufacturers were most likely to obtain non-recourse debt financing by commercial banks”, according to a Feb 17 Trina press release. [Read more…]

Hunt’s gong, renewable targets and Redflow: a mixed bag

It’s been a big week for renewables. A faux minister gets the nod for a fake gong, news that we’ll fail to meet our renewable targets and another Australian battery storage provider pulls on a boot.

News that Australia’s very own alleged Minister for the Environment Greg Hunt was named World’s Best Minister in a glittering ceremony in oil-drenched Dubai was cause for mirth. A real thigh slapper as Greg swanned about, really seeming to believe that despite his steadily dismantling of renewables and apparent efforts to endanger the Australian environment deserved a reward.

However the smiles were soon wiped away by the news that our renewable energy targets won’t be met. According to analysis by Green Energy Markets, the supply of renewable energy will fall short of the requirement for 2018 unless there’s a remarkable turnaround. At least 4,400MW of new renewable energy capacity needs to be committed this year in large-scale projects for the renewable energy target to make its goal of 33,000GWh by 2020, according to the environmental market research company. [Read more…]

Solar thermal electricity could generate 12 percent of world’s energy by 2050 says report

CSIRO solar tower with mirror array.

These mirrors at CSIRO in Newcastle can focus the sun to create superheated steam. That is the same pressure and temperature of steam that a coal fired power plant creates. Amazing.

A major report released last week has predicted solar thermal electricity (STE) has the potential to power six percent of the world’s energy by 2030 and 12 percent by 2050. The scenario is based on the most positive outcome where global capacity of STE (aka concentrating solar power) reaches 1,600 GW by the middle of the century. [Read more…]

New “dipping technique” improves the humidity performance of perovskite solar cells

perovskite structure

Another breakthrough on the road to cheap, efficient perovskite solar cells

A combined Australian and Chinese team has developed a water-resistant perovskite solar cell using a specially-designed dipping technique. The new technology will dramatically boost the humidity tolerance of the cells, the lack of which was previously considered a stumbling block to commercialisation. [Read more…]

WA Solar Power: a template for the future of energy in Australia

WA leads the way for solar power adoption

WA leads the way for solar power adoption

A recent study underlining the popularity of rooftop solar in WA has given Australians a glimpse into the country’s solar-driven energy future. For a survey conducted by Curtin University that has everyone talking is the one that shows power generated from rooftop solar systems in the state’s South-West Interconnected System (SWIS) produce as much energy as the state’s largest power station.

“We are in the extraordinary position of saying that Perth [SWIS] now has rooftop solar as the largest supplier of electricity, it’s the biggest power station in WA,” said Curtin University sustainability professor Peter Newman to the ABC AM program.

He added that the area currently has 20 percent coverage of solar panels, though this was just the beginning. [Read more…]

New Year kicks off more solar cell efficiency gains

30% badge on a solar panel

30% solar cell efficiency is on the way. That would mean a 50% reduction in the cost of solar. Hooray!

Will 2016 see the beginning of the end for fossil fuels in the wake of the rise and rise of green energy? Many commentators are saying this is the case and if solar cell efficiency gains are any indication, they have a good case. [Read more…]

Trina Solar Panels deliver (yet another) efficiency record

trina solar logo and panels

Trina Solar Panel Efficiencies Keep On Rising,

Trina Solar panels look set for a big 2016 with news that the company has achieved yet another solar cell efficiency record.

Fresh from trouncing its previous record for efficiency for a p-type polycrystalline silicon solar cell, Trina Solar announced last week they had achieved an efficiency of 22.13 percent for a 156 x 156mm² solar cell for a mono-crystalline silicon (c-Si) solar cell. This beats the company’s previous record of 21.40 percent, set in November 2014. [Read more…]

Up and away: high altitude solar balloons ready for take off

solar ballons

A solar ballon concept. Picture: E. Jullien/pixscience

High altitude solar balloons deployed where clouds won’t interfere with their output may be the stuff of science fiction. But are they? At least one reputable research house thinks this is where solar panels should be, saving space used for solar farms for much needed agricultural land. All while more than doubling solar conversion efficiency. [Read more…]

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