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Published on July 24th, 2012 | by Thomas Gerke


Infographic — A Summer Day in Germany

July 24th, 2012 by  

This week, Germany got wonderful sunny weather all over the place, which made me hopeful that a new solar power record might be around the corner. Unfortunately, this didn’t happen on Monday, but 21.7 GW of peak output and 184 GWh aren’t bad either! That’s Giga with a G, as in 184 million kWhs.

To illustrate the meaning of having such summer days, I created the little infographic below. Keep in mind that, with solar installations still soaring in Germany, such power outputs are destined to become the norm sooner than later.

The last piece of information on that graphic is rather important, in my opinion, because EVs are already the perfect commuter cars, and when are most commuter cars usually parked? Between 8 AM and 6 PM, when their owners are parked behind a desk. And when do people usually watch TV? After 8 PM, when their electric commuter cars are plugged in at home.

Since increasing solar capacity by 2-10 times is not really a problem, considering the untapped roof potential, and the idea of millions of EVs by 2030 doesn’t really sound abstract… where’s the storage problem again?

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About the Author

is a close observer of the scientific, political and economic energy debate in Germany and around the globe. Inspired by the life's work of the renewable energy advocate Hermann Scheer, Thomas focuses on spreading information that showcase the possibilities & opportunities of a 100% renewable energy system. Though technology is key for this energy shift, he also looks at the socio-economic benefits and the political, as well as structural barriers.

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  • Anne

    The reason it was not a record is probably due to the warm weather. Especially crystalline silicon solar panels (the vast majority) suffers a power degradation of about 0.5% per degree celcius cell temperature. Hot weather and a feeble breeze (less cooling) means lower yield.

    I don’t think there is a storage problem right now, and there will not be one for the forseeable future. International grid connections can and will be reinforced so excess generation in one country can be exported to another. TSO’s will learn better to predict yield and deal with the fluctuations.

  • Luke

    To me there is a storage problem, but I’m confident it will hopefully be fixed by pumped hydro, grid level storage (liquidmetal batteries), continental power grids etc. 

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