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Future trends in solar

January 6, 2020
Future trends in solar

2018 will be known in the solar community as the year solar broke the 100 GW threshold of annual installations, in addition to being the year solar in total reached a cumulative operational capacity of over 500 GW or 0.5 TW, according to Solar Power Europe’s 2019 update on the current outlook for solar.  All in all, a successful year for the industry which saw significant growth both in output and capacity. In this blog, New Age Innovation examines the future trends we envisage in solar energy in the forthcoming decade and how this can impact your ability cut energy costs whilst simultaneously reducing emissions.

Collective self-consumption development

The recent development of collective self-consumption has made solar energy significantly more accessible to many. As a result of innovative regulatory schemes and smart metering, the prosumer model is no-longer reserved to single-housing residential consumers or single-building businesses. These self-consumption models allow sharing of self-generated electricity among consumes in the same premises. It is hoped that this development will contribute to the continued growth of the solar energy industry.

Solar vehicles and solar infrastructure

The use of solar powered vehicles has been floated for many years; however this mode of transport is still in its infancy, with few having made the transition. This is set to change with the rise in prominence of car-integrated PV channels. This development is not limited to cars, it is hoped that solar will be integrated with heavier vehicles e.g. bus, trucks and trains. At current, solar powered boats are viewed as the most advanced, with a number currently being used for clean, emission free transport. Such solutions are highly anticipated, with experts predicting a decreased dependency on larger, more expensive batteries.

Corporate sourcing of renewables

The global corporate sourcing market is currently reaching levels of activity and diversity it is yet to achieve. This can be described by the rise of corporate PPA deals being signed;

“In 2018, a breath-taking 13.4 GW of corporate PPA deals were signed worldwide, more than double the volume in 2017.

Solar Power Europe’s Global Market Outlook For Solar Power 2019 – 2023

Nations such as the United States, the world’s leading renewable energy PPA market has seen a rapid increase in corporate sourcing of green power. Europe has also observed many deals, recording a record number of PPA deals in 2018. In the past, corporates have shown a preference towards wind over solar for renewable PPAs as it was easy to access large, renewable power volumes from large wind farms. It is expected that the push for large-scale solar in Europe will see low cost solar play a larger role in corporate sourcing in the coming years. Though at an early stage, corporate sourcing of solar power demonstrates the increasingly strategic role that solar plays in the business operation of corporations around the world. Find out how New Age Innovation can help your business commit to renewable energy and corporate responsibility here.

Inverters

With solar now the lowest cost power technology in many regions, it has been asked whether there is further cost reduction potential. The answer to this is YES. Solar still has vast, untapped potential. The digitalisation in solar has lead to the increasing importance of the inverter’s role in PV systems. Used in the past as a means to convert DC into AC power, today’s inverters are considered the nucleus of solar power. They bring various benefits, such as the ability to cope with all types of storage systems and acting as a key tool for efficient solar power plant operation and management, including grid services. Find out how an upgrade to a SolarEdge inverter can increase the efficiency of your solar system here.

Solar and storage

Stationary battery storage is rapidly growing in popularity in a number of markets, particularly those such as the UK, an established residential PV rooftop market, where technology already supports the distribution of solar-self consumption systems. This will be pivotal in taking solar penetration to the next level.

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