The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has said that renewable energy sources such as wind and solar must lie at the core of a massive decarbonisation of the world’s electricity systems to meet climate change mitigation targets.

The IPCC this week delivered the results of its Working Group III, the last of its seven-year review of climate science and options. This focuses mitigation of climate change and the message was one of hope – the world can avoid the worst impacts of climate change, and it needn’t actually cost that much. Read the full article →

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Solar solution for apartment owners

April 15, 2014
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Australia has one of the highest per capita and rooftop penetration rates of solar power in the world.  Our position at the top of the rankings is largely because we have historically had strong support programs and more recently, dramatic increases in electricity rates which make solar a fantastic financial proposition. However, so far the […]

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Solar’s rise to dominance closer than we think

April 15, 2014
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The use of solar power is increasing at a prodigious rate around the world and Australia is no exception. In fact solar’s growth may be have already reached an unforseen tipping point, according to American inventor and entrepreneur Ray Kurzweil. Kurzweil formulated what he called the ‘law of accelerating returns’ after having studied numerous technology […]

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Panasonic breaks silicon efficiency record after 15 years with a 25.6% efficient HIT cell

April 14, 2014
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After a run of nearly 15 years, the record efficiency for silicon solar cells was finally broken last week. Panasonic Corporation announced last Thursday (10 April 2014) that it has achieved a conversion efficiency of 25.6% with its hetero-junction silicon solar technology (HIT). This represents a 0.6% improvement in efficiency over the incumbent PERL (Passivated […]

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Rules for filing a development application for a solar PV system in NSW

April 12, 2014
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Anyone planning on going solar in NSW will need to file certain paperwork to get their system connected to the electricity grid. The exact requirements for getting grid-connected will vary with the solar customer’s network operator (Essential Energy is one example who we’ve written about previously), but fortunately this is fairly straightforward for most small-scale […]

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Australia’s RayGen secures funds to manufacture concentrating PV technology

April 12, 2014
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Australian solar technology start-up RayGen has signed a $60 million equity and manufacturing deal to help accelerate a technology that it believes will generate $1 billion in sales by 2020. The Melbourne-based RayGen is a developer of concentrated solar PV (CSPV) technology, which users computer‐controlled mirrors to direct a concentrated beam of sunlight onto ultra‐efficient […]

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Solar forecasting & solar system performance modeling services by Reuniwatt

April 12, 2014
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The world’s electricity mix is changing much more rapidly than could have been anticipated just a decade ago. As renewable energy sources like wind and solar power grow to take up an ever-larger share of the world’s electricity generation portfolio, it becomes increasingly important to know what to expect from them–preferably as far in advance […]

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Sun MonitOZ: Solar system performance app (Currently seeking beta-testers)

April 11, 2014
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The popularity of rooftop solar power systems has soared globally in recent years, and Australia remains one of the global leaders for home solar uptake. This is due in part to the fact that solar power is more affordable here than in many parts of the world, thanks to federal government incentives & competition between […]

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Victoria Greens launch campaign to stand up for rooftop solar owners

April 10, 2014
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Victoria’s Green Party has announced a campaign to support the rights state’s current and would-be solar-powered households, which already number over 207,000. If just one in 10 solar system owners change their vote, Victoria Greens chief Greg Barber says, this could have the potential to sway an election. In a speech at the opening of […]

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$5 billion of US rooftop solar will be crowd-funded by 2019

April 10, 2014
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The US rooftop solar market could be crowd-funded to the tune of $5 billion within five years, according to an executive from SolarCity, America’s biggest solar provider by market value. To date, the crowdfunding model – in which rooftop PV developers solicit funds directly from retail investors, often through websites which tap a large number of […]

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Suntech, finalising takeover details, officially announces its return

April 9, 2014
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After a restructuring period, Wuxi Suntech has officially announced that the details of its acquisition by Shenfung Photovoltaic International have been finalised as of 7 April, and the company is fully back in business. In an email announcing the news, Suntech CEO Erik Luo expressed excitement and optimism about the development, which has been in […]

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Energy storage both opportunity & threat as regional grid operators look to shrink assets

April 9, 2014
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The head of Australia’s Energy Networks Association has predicted that grid operators in Queensland and Western Australia are likely to offload some of their extensive “poles and wires” networks. The move will likely pave the way for new players who can invest in min-grids that are based around solar PV and energy storage. Australia, because […]

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Why Perth’s POST newspaper installed a 30kW solar system

April 9, 2014
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Perth’s POST newspaper is a perfect case study of a business that decided to go solar to fight rapidly ballooning power bills. The independent, privately-owned, Shenton Park-based newspaper made the decision to have a system installed just this January, and has already seen substantial savings. The POST had first investigated the possibility of having a […]

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Decline in renewable energy investment thanks in part to falling prices

April 9, 2014
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Surging solar installations and the plunging cost of PV have helped buoy growth in global renewable energy capacity, despite a 14 per cent drop in clean energy investment in 2013, a report has found. Released on Monday, the joint report by UNEP, the Frankfurt School, and Bloomberg New Energy Finance, said renewables accounted for 44 […]

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Solar Frontier achieves record 20.9% cell efficiency on thin-film CIS

April 9, 2014
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Solar Frontier, Japanese thin-film PV manufacturer has announced a new world record efficiency of 20.9% on copper, indium, selenium (CIS) cell, besting the previous world record of 20.8% for thin-film PV as well as the company’s own previous record of 19.7%. This is the fruition of a combined R&D effort with Japan’s New Energy and […]

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Ecoppia offers automated, robotic, water-free cleaning solution for large PV farms

April 7, 2014
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Ecoppia, an Israeli solar startup, has introduced the Ecoppia E4, a new robot-based automatic panel cleaning system that it claims is water-free, making it one of the first such systems to be commercially deployed. The Ecoppia E4 system is currently deployed at Ketura Sun, the first commercial solar PV farm in Israel and the first […]

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Analysis: WA moving to 100% renewables by 2029 cheaper than status quo

April 7, 2014
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The WA Greens have published a new analysis that suggests that the state could move to 100 per cent renewables by 2029 with a cheaper outcome than business as usual. The study was released ahead of the weekend’s Senate re-run in the state, and suggests that runaway advances in the cost of solar in particular, […]

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Solar PV system prices for April 2014

April 7, 2014
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Average 1.5kW solar system prices appear to have plateaued between March and April after steadily rising over the course of the last 8 months or so, while prices for 2kW solar systems continued to increase in almost all cities. 3kW, 4kW and 5kW system prices remained steady, and 10kW system prices fell slightly. Average solar […]

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2014 off to a good start with record-breaking Q1 solar demand led by UK & Japan

April 4, 2014
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New solar PV capacity will soar to new heights in 2014, with around 50 gigawatts expected to be installed by the time the year is over, according to solar market analysts NPD Solarbuzz. Leading the way in the first quarter are Japan and the UK, with a record-breaking 9GW installed between them–or 1/3 or total […]

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Rooftop solar: Queensland’s 6th largest power plant

April 4, 2014
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The combined capacity of rooftop solar arrays in south-east Queensland, the area managed by the energy distributor Energex, has now surpassed 800MW, making it the sixth biggest generator in the state. New data prepared by Energex underlines how solar continues to be attractive to Queenslanders, even without the huge feed in tariffs that were ended […]

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250kW solar systems: Costs, power output, ROI

April 3, 2014
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Solar power has become one of the most popular ways for Australian businesses to cut their power bills and reduce their carbon emissions. This article takes a look at pricing, power output, and potential savings possible with a 250 kilowatt (kW) solar system in Australia. Pricing for 250kW solar systems While many factors are at play in […]

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