As pointed out on the Dispatch science page on Sunday, the price of energy from solar is now competitive with that derived from fossil fuels ("It's time to embrace alternative energy sources"). The very beneficial effect of this transition will be the slowing of carbon dioxide emissions and warming of our planet.
When looking to the future of renewable energy production, we can’t deny that energy storage is poised to grow rapidly especially for the upcoming years to come. This insight into growth is the outcome of a new report entitled “Energy Storage – towards a commercial model”, authored by energy experts. But what are the next …
At this rate, just about every man-made surface there is could be covered in solar panels in the future. Yesterday, Tourouvre-au-Perche, a small town in northern France, opened what is likely the first road paved in solar panels in the world, the Guardian reported. The road is roughly 1 km (0.6 miles) long, with one lane covered entirely in a patchwork of small solar cells that look rather like bathroom tiles, or a very dirty version of the road in the Wizard of Oz.
Over the past six years, the cost of solar energy has dropped dramatically, to the point where it is now even cheaper than wind power in emerging markets like China and India. This may be largely due to rising investments in solar over the last few years. Now, there is electricity being produced in Chile for $29.10 per megawatt hour–half the price of power produced by coal.
Researchers are now trying to utilize function deployment mode to develop a wheelchair with user-selectable manual or electric propulsion mode along with a solar power supply system. One such study was published in 2014 in the Journal of Rehabilitation Research & Development (JRRD). The study concluded that the use of auxiliary solar power supply system increased the travel range of a wheelchair by 26% compared to a wheelchair powered by battery alone. Moreover, the modular design of the wheelchair provided ease of transportation and storage, thus overcoming the shortfall of electric powered wheelchairs.
The sun is setting on Japan's clean-energy boom, despite projects like a massive floating solar farm near Tokyo, as the government cuts subsidies and bets on nuclear and coal-fired power, critics say. Workers at the floating power station, one of the world's biggest, have just finished laying about 50,000 interconnected panels on a vast dam reservoir.
Since 2011, French Company Ciel & Terre has been developing large-scale floating solar solutions. Their innovative Hydrelio Floating PV system allows standard PV panels to be installed on large bodies of water such as: drinking water reservoirs, quarry lakes, irrigation canals, remediation and tailing ponds, and hydro electric dam reservoirs. This simple and affordable alternative to ground-mounted systems is particularly suitable for water-intensive industries who cannot afford to waste either land or water.
A new design for solar cells that uses inexpensive, commonly available materials could rival and even outperform conventional cells made of silicon. In a new article, researchers describe using tin and other abundant elements to create novel forms of perovskite -- a photovoltaic crystalline material that's thinner, more flexible and easier to manufacture than silicon crystals.
Tesla's new line of energy-harvesting roof tiles are a key part of Elon Musk's plan to make solar sexy.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk took to the stage at Universal Studios in LA this evening promising to make solar sexy. To that end, he unveiled a range of textured glass tiles with integrated solar cells that are nearly indistinguishable from conventional tiling, along with a sleek update to the company’s energy-storing Powerwall.
Imagine a future where a building’s energy comes from its windows. Many scientists have worked towards that future in the lab, but now five scientists from Los Alamos National Laboratory have demonstrated solar window technology can indeed be scaled up. Instead of palm-sized models, they created solar windows large enough to power entire buildings.
Solar energy is hot. Utility capacity is growing exponentially in the U.S. and abroad. By mid-century solar energy is expected to produce more than 15% of the world's electricity, up from 1% today. Investors eager to tap into this growth phenomenon though must choose wisely. The growth can come from many different, largely small-cap companies marketing a variety of products and services. So there are no sure winners. This makes solar a much more wide open field than wind power, the second-fastest energy growth source, where the increases will come mostly from continuing to produce and install the same types of large wind turbine developments.
Last year, human civilization produced its lowest carbon emissions since 1992.In this segment from Industry Focus: Energy Opens a New Window. , energy analysts Taylor Muckerman and Sean O'Reilly talk about a few of the big trends that led to those lower emissions even in a year when gas consumption was relatively high. Also, they talk about Texas' booming solar energy industry, why so many solar company stocks are falling in price despite increasing panel installations, how solar and wind power might be expected to grow in the future, where natural gas fits into the greener energy future, and more.
(CNN)In sub-Saharan Africa, over 600 million people do not have access to electricity -- that's 68 percent of the population, according to the International Energy Agency. That's because the power distribution infrastructure -- plants and the grid -- is severely underdeveloped, requires large investments to improve and ultimately can't keep up with the growth in demand.
In Nigeria, the case for solar power development is not only inspired by environmental concerns, rather it is hinged on strong economic considerations. Fossil-based generation has already failed the country and the grimmest hope it holds are only realizable in decades; a waiting period that will be too expensive for an exploding Nigerian population and a contracting economy.
Royal Dutch Shell, the world's second-biggest publicly listed oil company, is studying acquisitions in the green energy sector, its CEO told Reuters, as it bows to shareholder demands for a strategy beyond fossil fuels. Shell, which has a market value of $200 billion, produces two percent of the world's oil and gas but rapid technological change coupled with policies to protect the climate have kick-started a shift in energy markets that has put enormous pressure on oil companies to plan for a time after fossil fuels.
La petite île de Ta'u, perdue au milieu du Pacifique , était jusqu'ici connue pour être le berceau du peuple polynésien, tout comme les autres îles des Samoa américaines. Ce petit territoire volcanique est maintenant sous le feu des projecteurs de Tesla et SolarCity, qui l'ont choisie il y a plusieurs mois pour y mener un projet commun : rendre l'île quasiment autonome grâce aux énergies renouvelables.
Solar energy has the potential to provide abundant power, but only if scientists solve two key issues: storing the energy for use at all hours, particularly at night, and making the technology more cost effective. Now an interdisciplinary team at Stanford has made significant strides toward solving the storage issue, demonstrating the most efficient means yet of storing electricity captured from sunlight in the form of chemical bonds. If the team can find a way of lowering the cost of their technology, they say it would be a huge step toward making solar power a viable alternative to current, more polluting energy sources.
There’s a war brewing over the future of rooftop solar, and Arizona is at ground zero. Pinnacle West Capital Corp., which owns the state’s largest utility, last week said it has formed a third-party group to support candidates for an elected state board that regulates their industry. The move promises to inject $1 million into a race in which SolarCity Corp., a rooftop solar provider, is already planning to spend $2 million though a nonprofit it supports, according to officials from the two groups.
Imagine traveling from San Francisco’s Marina to work in downtown San Jose—a drive that would normally occupy the better part of two hours—in only 15 minutes. What if you could save nearly four hours round-trip between São Paulo’s city center and the suburbs in Campinas? Or imagine reducing your 90-plus minute stop-and-go commute from Gurgaon to your office in central New Delhi to a mere six minutes.
The Singaporean authorities are pilot testing 10 different solar panel system and they will evaluate which one will be used in making the largest solar panel island to generate clean energy for the country.The pilot testing will focus on the energy efficiency of the panels as it is above water and the presence of the panels will reduce water evaporation and if this happens, the water might just cool down the panels reducing the efficiency of the panels to gather solar energy.
The main areas of growth in the next five years are likely to be in small-scale battery storage in conjunction with solar PV; in utility-scale electricity storage; in electric vehicles; in commercial, communications and software capabilities to allow DER to be aggregated, in a ‘virtual power plant’ or ‘swarm’; in pumped storage hydro; and in islanded use cases integrating renewables.
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