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Supercapacitors can take market share from lithium batteries

Supercapacitors can take market share from lithium batteries | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

Multifunctionality is driving the change in energy storage landscape. The consumer electronics industry has changed drastically in the past few years. Portable devices are increasingly becoming multifunctional, and not only phones which currently work for many purposes (e.g. making calls, sending SMS, internet navigation, email, video playing) but cameras and other devices as well.

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France Mandates Solar Roofs for Commercial Zones

France Mandates Solar Roofs for Commercial Zones | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it
Recently passed legislation in France has mandated that the roofs of all new buildings in commercial areas must be so-called green roofs, which are at least partially covered in either solar modules or with living plants.

As well as potentially delivering a boost to installed solar capacity across the country, green roofs provide a thermal insulating effect and moderate rain run-off, while also boosting biodiversity.

French installed PV capacity figures have shown something of a modest recovery after two years of decline following a shift away from a feed-it tariff scheme to competitive tenders.

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Aux États-Unis, la bataille autour des énergies solaires fait rage

Aux États-Unis, la bataille autour des énergies solaires fait rage | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

En cinq ans, le nombre d'emplois lié au solaire a bondi de 86% aux États-Unis. Ce secteur pèse désormais deux fois plus lourd que celui du charbon. Même Apple et Google ont choisi d'y investir massivement. Ce qui ne convient pas du tout aux énergéticiens historiques, qui n'hésitent plus à faire du lobbying anti-solaire.

Ce boom du solaire profite directement à l'économie américaine, dont le taux de chômage a déjà de quoi faire pâlir les Européens.

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China Planning To Build Solar Power Station In Space

China Planning To Build Solar Power Station In Space | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

Chinese engineers seem to be getting their new mega-project ideas from Isaac Asimov's books. According to ET, China is planning to build a mega solar power station at an altitude of 36,000 kilometers above the ground to cut the smog and greenhouse gases while solving the energy problem. If China manages to build the power station of the scale it's planning; it will be bigger engineering project than the entire Apollo Program and even the International Space Station. 
The space solar power station would cut on the fluctuations in collection of solar energy on the Earth because of day and night. The space power station would be able to collect solar energy with 99% of the time and also generate 10x more electricity per unit area as compared to ground-based panels. Wang firmly believes that the solar based power station would be able to solve the energy crisis on the Earth.

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10 Things Everyone Should Know About Solar Energy

10 Things Everyone Should Know About Solar Energy | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

Solar energy is the fastest growing energy source in the U.S., and is beginning to upend the utility industry as we know it. In California, Arizona, Hawaii, and many other states the cost of electricity from the sun is now lower than the cost of electricity from the grid, meaning homeowners can have solar panels installed and actually save money. 

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The Renewable Electricity Grid: The Future Is Now

The Renewable Electricity Grid: The Future Is Now | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

Even a few years ago, renewable energy played only a small role in most countries’ energy planning. While governments and publics were eager to increase the share of renewables in their energy systems, the economics of doing so were challenging. There were also serious concerns about the impact on the electricity grid of adding too much capacity from variable renewable energy sources, such as solar and wind.

"Renewables are no longer a marginal business. We are talking about levels of energy that can bring light to thousands of households, grow businesses, meet the needs of cities, and drive entire economies."

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New kind of “tandem” solar cell developed

New kind of “tandem” solar cell developed | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it
Researchers combine two types of photovoltaic material to make a cell that harnesses more sunlight.

Researchers at MIT and Stanford University have developed a new kind of solar cell that combines two different layers of sunlight-absorbing material in order to harvest a broader range of the sun’s energy. The development could lead to photovoltaic cells that are more efficient than those currently used in solar-power installations, the researchers say.

The new cell uses a layer of silicon — which forms the basis for most of today’s solar panels — but adds a semi-transparent layer of a material called perovskite, which can absorb higher-energy particles of light. 

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Vers des cellules solaires et des diodes électroluminescentes imprimées

Vers des cellules solaires et des diodes électroluminescentes imprimées | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it
Les composants optoélectroniques qui peuvent être produits par le procédé roll-to-roll, à la manière des journaux sur une rotative, ouvrent des voies prometteuses pour la production de cellules solaires et d’éclairages LED bon marché. 

A la mi-temps du projet "TREASORES" financé par l’UE, les chercheurs ont récemment présenté les premiers prototypes d’un module de cellule solaire flexible ainsi que d’une électrode composite transparente à base d’argent dont le rendement est supérieur à celui des électrodes oxyde d’indium-étain utilisées jusqu’ici – et dont le coût est de plus notablement inférieur.

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Cost of solar power to fall to 2 cts/kWh in 2050

Cost of solar power to fall to 2 cts/kWh in 2050 | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

“In a few years, solar energy plants will deliver the most inexpensive power available in many parts of the world. By 2025, the cost of producing power in central and southern Europe will have declined to between 4 and 6 cents per kilowatt hour, and by 2050 to as low as 2 to 4 cents.” These are the main conclusions of a study by the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems commissioned by the German think tank Agora Energiewende. In view of these conclusions, “plans for future power supply systems should therefore be revised worldwide”, says Patrick Graichen, Director of Agora.

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Why is low-carbon energy innovation so slow?

Why is low-carbon energy innovation so slow? | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

The world needs a lot of energy. Global energy demand is expected to increase by 37% percent over the next 25 years, according to the International Energy Agency’s World Energy Outlook 2014. Meeting this demand without significantly increasing carbon emissions requires new energy technologies that involve low or no carbon dioxide emissions.

It is widely recognized that the government plays a critical role in advancing innovation and technology development. State and federal policies have driven deployment of solar and wind power as well as development of hydraulic fracturing, which helped spark a boom in oil and gas drilling in the US.

 
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Solar energy could soon get a 2-for-1 boost with tandem cells | ExtremeTech

Solar energy could soon get a 2-for-1 boost with tandem cells | ExtremeTech | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it
While Europe has embraced solar power technology to the point that an eclipse can cause mild panic, the efficiency of the best solar cells is still hovering around a mere 25%. That’s a lot of free energy that isn’t being harvested. Past research has pointed to a plentiful mineral known as perovskite as a possible solution to the poor performance of solar cells, and now a team of scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Stanford University have put theory into action by constructing tandem silicon-perovskite solar cells.
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Danny Boy's curator insight, March 26, 11:34 PM

Perovskite is a cheap crystalline organometal mineral which can increase the observed efficiency of solar cells by working in tandem with silicon solar cells by 50%.

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How Canada Could Hit 100 Percent Renewable Energy - Solar Energy

How Canada Could Hit 100 Percent Renewable Energy - Solar Energy | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

A new report from leading Canadian academics finds plenty of renewable energy potential if the government gets serious about climate change. It found that the country could get 100 percent of its electricity from low-carbon sources like wind, solar, and hydropower by 2035 and reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by 2050. To achieve these goals, the report recommended that the federal government implement a nationwide price on carbon and eliminate subsidies to Canada’s fossil fuel industry — particularly, its tar sands industry.

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5 sneaky ways to harness clean energy

5 sneaky ways to harness clean energy | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it
Beyond solar panels and turbines, inventors have hatched clever ways to harvest renewable energy.

 By now, we’re all familiar with the mainstays of renewable energy. They’re the solar panel arrays and massive turbine systems that span great lengths, collecting energy from the sun, wind and water and churning out megawatts of energy. It’s these behemoths that we point to as bellwethers of a future where the world no longer depends on fossil fuels.

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'Take it or leave it', government tells renewable energy industry in latest RET talks

'Take it or leave it', government tells renewable energy industry in latest RET talks | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it
Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane has told the clean energy industry that the government's latest offer on the renewable energy target is a "take it or leave it" position.

In a fresh round of talks with unions and representatives for the clean energy and aluminium industries on Monday, Mr Macfarlane said the government would not budge from a figure of 32,000 gigawatt hours of renewable energy production by 2020.

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Solar Energy Doesn’t Have to Be a Luxury Item

Solar Energy Doesn’t Have to Be a Luxury Item | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

reen, energy-saving technologies are essentially luxury products. Solar rigs and energy-efficiency upgrades require big upfront investments in equipment that may not pay off for many years. Spend $40,000 on solar panels for your roof, and you won’t get your money back in lower electricity bills for a dozen years or more. You’d have to drive a hybrid car tens of thousands of miles to recapture the extra costs in the form of lower spending on gasoline. As a result, going green has historically only been an option to those who can afford to make conspicuous displays of virtuous consumption—not the 1 percent, perhaps, but certainly the top 25 percent.

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Solar Impulse lands in China

Solar Impulse lands in China | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

Bertrand Piccard departed towards Chongqing (China) this morning attempting the most challenging flight since the beginning of the #RTW journey. Watch the live coverage of the pilot’s landing in Chongqing International Airport. Conor will take us through the takeoff and inflight experience, including the live coverage that has happened on social media.

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Brazilian government to test floating PV on dam reservoirs

Brazilian government to test floating PV on dam reservoirs | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

Brazil’s Minister of Mines and Energy (MME) Eduardo Braga said that the government is planning to test floating PV installations on several reservoir dams across the country. Braga stressed that the first pilot floating PV project will be tested at an undisclosed hydroelectric power plant in the country within 120 days, without providing further details. According to local media, the MME believes that the country’s reservoir dams have the potential to host floating PV plants with a combined of 15 GW

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Analysis sees many promising pathways for solar photovoltaic power

Analysis sees many promising pathways for solar photovoltaic power | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

MIT researchers say that it is “one of the few renewable, low-carbon resources with both the scalability and the technological maturity to meet ever-growing global demand for electricity.”Use of solar photovoltaics has been growing at a phenomenal rate: Worldwide installed capacity has seen sustained growth averaging 43 percent per year since 2000. To evaluate the prospects for sustaining such growth, the MIT researchers look at possible constraints on materials availability, and propose a system for evaluating the many competing approaches to improved solar-cell performance.

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Startup Helps Renewable Energy Fans Who Can’t Install Their Own Solar Panels

Startup Helps Renewable Energy Fans Who Can’t Install Their Own Solar Panels | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

Solar panels are becoming increasingly affordable, but many people still face barriers to harnessing the power of the sun for their own homes. For example, they might live in an apartment or in a house where the roof is angled or structured improperly for solar panel installation.

A new Boston-based startup called CloudSolar is offering an intriguing solution. Founded by a team including two electrical engineering Ph.D. candidates and currently raising funds on Indiegogo, CloudSolar lets people buy a solar panel, or a share in one, on a farm that is expected to be completed by 2016 (erecting the solar panels will only take a couple of months, but the company also has to deal with utility and land permits, which will take longer).

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Bolivian government announces another large-scale PV project

Bolivian government announces another large-scale PV project | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

The Bolivian Minister of Hydrocarbons and Energy José Sosa Soruco announced that a 5 MW PV project will be developed by an unnamed company in the Department of Tarija, southern Bolivia. The minister added that the project’s required investment will be of $11 million and that it will be located in the municipality Yunchará, without providing further details. Bolivia has had a limited success with solar energy development to date. In October 2014, Bolivian President Evo Morales officially inaugurated a 1.7 MW PV power plant installed in northern Bolivia's Pando Department.

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See-through solar is tomorrow’s threat to oil

See-through solar is tomorrow’s threat to oil | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

Solar energy is the future. The problem is, it’s been the future for a long time. And while progress has been made, using the sun as a primary source of power hasn’t really broken through.

One possible breakthrough, however, is becoming clearer—literally. The engineers at Ubiquitous Energy are developing solar panels that are completely transparent and as thin as a laminate.

They can do this by creating see-through solar cells that absorb only the invisible parts of the solar spectrum—ultraviolet and infrared radiation.

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Post-FIT Japan: Manufacturers Promote Solar PV with Inverter-Integrated Energy Storage

Post-FIT Japan: Manufacturers Promote Solar PV with Inverter-Integrated Energy Storage | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it
The Japanese government has announced the new feed-in tariff (FIT) rate for the fiscal year 2015, effective April 1st. The new FIT rate for residential solar photovoltaic (PV) systems will be ¥33/kWh, down from ¥37/kWh the previous fiscal year.

“In a few years, the Japanese PV market will be shifted to the self-consumption mode, in which excess generated electricity (via PV) will be stored (instead of being sold) due to declining FIT incentive rates and raising electricity prices, and pushed by upcoming events such as the retail electricity deregulation in 2016 and utility restructuring of unbundling generation, transmission, and distribution in 2020,”

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California is first state with 5% of its electricity from solar

California is first state with 5% of its electricity from solar | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it
California more than doubled its solar output last year and now hosts two of the world's largest solar plants.

California’s big push into clean energy is seeing results as the state became the first with at least 5% of its overall electricity coming from large-scale solar projects last year. California was followed by Arizona and Nevada, both of which generated 2.8% of their total electricity from big solar plants.

 
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Financing Climate-concious Investments in Latin America

Financing Climate-concious Investments in Latin America | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

Following the conclusion of the United Nations climate negotiations in Lima, Peru, last December, a busy schedule of breakout sessions has begun for Latin American business and political leaders in early 2015. 

Building on the Lima Call for Climate Action, these summits have the important objective of creating functional and market-based mechanisms to achieve “intended nationally determined contributions” of emissions reductions. The meetings are of special significance as participating countries prepare their positions leading up to major negotiations at the November 2015 climate talks in Paris.

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Solar Energy for every circumstance !

Solar Energy for every circumstance ! | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it
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Costa Rica has only used renewable energy this year

Costa Rica has only used renewable energy this year | Solar Energy projects & Energy Efficiency | Scoop.it

Costa Rica has reached an environmental milestone by using only renewable energy to generate power for at least the first 75 days of the year, a record for any country.

The Central American country, which has long boasted of its green credentials on energy policy, was able to achieve the milestone thanks to heavy rain in the first three months of the year.

“This has been a totally environmentally friendly 2015 as far as electricity is concerned,” the Costa Rican Institute of Electricity, the national supplier, said in a statement.

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Bella Reagan's curator insight, March 24, 2:46 AM

Unit 6

Summary

Costa Rica has reached seventy five consecutive days with only renewable energy. This article goes into depth of the conservative countries green ways. One reason Costa Rica was able to obtain this streak o renewable energy was that they received much rainfall that helped with the months. Almost four fifths of their energy comes from hydro-electric power so this really helped them. Costa Rica is ranked very high among latin American countries and is even about some European Union members like Italy. 

Insight

I predict Costa Rica thriving and growing in the future. Costa Rica has already grown and been one if the top ranked Latin American countries and worldwide nations. This feat of seventy five days is very impressive and I hope they continue to base their nation off of renewable sources of energy. I also hope that other countries may be inspired to go and try to do the same as Costa Rica or better.