Some more top cleantech stories from around, to kick off the week:
1. KDC Solar, teaming up with Nugen Capital Management, “has begun commercial operation of the second largest PV roof-mounted solar system in New Jersey at the White Rose Inc. warehouse in Carteret.” Ribbon-cutting (see picture) took place on January 25. “The 4.88-megawatt solar system will generate approximately 6.2 million hours of solar electricity per year and is designed to supply more than 60 percent of the electric power needs for the White Rose grocery warehouse site, which is owned by KTR Capital Partners. The installation was done by Solar Power Inc. a global leader in producing world-class solar energy facilities. SPI procured over 22,000 high quality panels manufactured by LDK Solar.”
2. National Solar Power has teamed up with Liberty County, Florida to build an “up to 100MW solar energy project” in the county. “Up to five 200-acre, 20MW farm segments are planned at a cost of $70 million each–-potentially injecting hundreds of millions of dollars in the Liberty County community.”
3. SolarBridge Technologies is teaming up with Solartec Energia Renovable to bring to AC modules to Mexico. SolarBridge is “the leading developer of module-integrated microinverters for the solar industry” and Solartec “will manufacture and sell AC modules powered by SolarBridge PantheonTM microinverters into the Mexican market.” Shipments of Solartech’s S60MC modules are projected to start going out towards the end of this quarter.
4. Canadian Solar recently signed and announced an agreement with the Al Fahad Group (a diversified conglomerate with expertise in Defense & Intelligence, Homeland Security, Networking & Communications and Power) to supply over 1.5 MW of its solar modules for one of the largest solar PV projects in Abu Dhabi, “considered one of the pioneers for renewable energies in the Middle East.” The project is a governmental venture that “was agreed upon during the recent World Future Energy Summit (WFES) held in Abu Dhabi.”
5. Yingli Solar has announced today that it will supply 180 MW of multi-crystalline and mono-crystalline (Panda) PV modules to IBC Solar in 2012. The modules are especially to be installed in Germany, other European countries, but also other countries around the world.
6. Orange County Great Park and the United States Department of Energy have announced that Orange County Great Park will be the site for the 2013 Solar Decathlon. “The Solar Decathlon challenges international collegiate teams to design and build solar-powered houses that are cost-effective, energy-efficient and attractive while promoting the education and economic benefits of renewable energy and energy efficiency. Visitors will be able to tour the renewable energy houses that combine energy-efficient construction and appliances at a specially-constructed Great Park Solar Village in the fall of 2013.” This is a biennial event that was started in 2002 and this will be the first time the event is not not held in Washington, D.C.
7. The China Development Bank Corp (CDB) has recently invested a total of $64 million to construct solar power plants in California and New Jersey. “China-based LDK Solar Co Ltd announced on Jan 4 that it had secured $20 million from CDB to construct two solar power plants in California,” China Daily reports. “In addition, SPI, a California-based company majority owned by LDK, received $44 million from CDB to pay for the construction of solar projects it is working on jointly with KDC Solar LLC in New Jersey.”
1. Germany installed over 2 gigawatts of wind power in 2011, a tremendous amount and an increase over its 2010 total (which was a somewhat disappointing year). “According to the German Wind Energy Institute (Dewi), the German Wind Energy Association (BWE), and mechanical engineering association VDMA, the relatively large volume of newly installed wind capacity in southern Germany helped bring the total for the country up to 2,007 megawatts for the year. Up to now, almost all of German wind power capacity has been installed in the north. For instance, the southern state of Baden-Württemberg long had governments almost completely opposed to wind power, as was the case when the EU’s current Energy Commissioner Oettinger was Prime Minister of that state. More turbines in the south would also take a load off the grid; at the moment, Germany is having trouble getting all of that wind power from the north down to cities in the south.”
2. Gamesa, one of the world’s leading wind turbine manufacturers has “secured a contract with the Santa María joint venture (made up of two Grupo Ortiz companies) to deliver 50 MW of turbines for the Santa María de Nieva wind farm (phases I and II), owned by Explotaciones Eólicas Vélez Rubio and slated for construction outside the towns of Vélez Rubio and Huércal-Overa in Almeria (Spain).” Here’s a fun fact: Gamesa has a staggering 1,960 MW of turbines installed in Andalusia and has approximately 700 MW more under development in the region.
3. Chicago-based Goldwind USA “has acquired two 10MW wind farms, referred to as the Musselshell Project, in Shawmut, Montana. Volkswind has obtained all of the necessary permits for construction and secured power purchase and interconnection agreements with NorthWestern Energy. The project is expected to begin construction soon with commercial operations as early as Q3 2012…. The deal marks Goldwind’s 14th in North and South America with over 200MW sold in the past year and a half.”
4. AnalySwift, “a leading provider of efficient high-fidelity modeling software for aerospace and energy composites and other advanced materials,” has announced the release of its new VABS 3.6. “This is the latest version of VABS, which is the tool of choice for efficient and accurate modeling of composite slender structures such as wind turbine blades, helicopter rotor blades, high aspect ratio wings, composite bridges, and other slender structural components,” Utah State University announces. “The main feature of the VABS 3.6 is the improved method of optimizing the finite element mesh. Compared to the previous version, VABS 3.6 is several times faster for large problems, and the slower I/O (Input/Output) performance reported by some users was corrected. Furthermore, VABS 3.6 can handle much larger models, which cannot be analyzed by previous versions.”
1. The Ford C-MAX Energi was recently announced the Green Car Journal’s 2012 Green Car Vision Award™ winner at The Washington Auto Show. “The highly-efficient plug-in model, which is expected to come to market in late 2012, is built on the same global C-car platform as the Ford Focus and other Ford models to come.”
2. New rules “requiring that 15 percent of all new cars sold by 2025 be powered by electricity, hydrogen, or other reduced-emission sources” were passed in California last week. The new rules “also require a 75-percent reduction in smog-creating emissions from new cars, SUVS, pickups and minivans, and a 50-percent reduction in emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases by 2025. According to the board, the initiative would put about 1.4 million low-emission vehicles on California roads by 2025, compared with current levels of about 10,000. They predict the new rules will add about $1,900 to the price of a new car, but will save about $5,900 in fuel costs during the life of the vehicle.”
1. “A tidal energy generator off the coast of Northern Ireland has been hailed as the first in the world to produce more than 3GWh of electricity, marking a major milestone for the UK’s fledgling marine energy sector,” the UK’s Business Green reports. The electricity has been produced by Marine Current Turbines’ (MCT) 1.2-MW SeaGen device. “The government has predicted energy from wave and tidal technologies could provide up to 27GW of capacity in the UK by 2050, although much of the technology is still in early stages of development with MCT one of the first developers to get a commercial scale device in the water.”
2. Pike Research announced today that worldwide revenue from microgrids is projected to reach $17.3 billion by 2017, according to one of its latest reports. Capacity in such microgrids is projected to reach 4.7 gigawatts in that time. “Microgrids, or integrated systems in which distributed energy resources (DERs) operate as a single, autonomous grid either in parallel to or isolated from the existing utility power grid, offer customers and distribution utilities a host of new ways to bolster reliability and manage variable, bidirectional resources. In addition, their smaller scale results in far fewer line losses, a lower demand on transmission infrastructure, and the ability to rely on more localized sources of power generation. All of these benefits are stimulating increased demand for microgrids on a worldwide basis, in a range of application scenarios including campus environments, military operations, remote/off-grid settings, community/utility systems, and commercial and industrial markets.”
3. Ryan Matley of the Rocky Mountain Institute discusses how “the industrial sector can achieve 84 percent greater production using 9 to 13 percent less energy, and save $0.5 trillion net” with a focus on energy efficiency and renewable energy in a recent post piggy-backing on the institute’s Reinventing Fire analysis. The post also focuses on how these industries are creating jobs and rebuilding a strong American manufacturing sector (with significant successes already). Climate Progress aptly titled a repost of this piece “Picking up the $500 Billion Bill on The Ground: Driving the Next Industrial Revolution Through Efficiency.” Well put.