Solar Thermal

Big Solar Germany: Utility-scale solar heat at record-low 36 EUR/MWh

Operators of several gas-driven combined cycle power plants, or CCPPs, have notified the German Federal Network Agency of their systems’ final shutdown. These plants are no longer economically viable, as they have been running ever fewer hours because of a high proportion of cost-effective renewable grid electricity. Their shutdown will create a shortage of supply in district heating networks providing thermal energy to German municipalities. Utility-scale solar thermal plants equipped with seasonal storage could help close the gap at heat prices of around 36 EUR/MWh, Christian Holter said. Holter is the Managing Director of Austrian turnkey system supplier S.O.L.I.D., which has carried out feasibility studies on behalf of several European cities.

05.04.2018

Tibet´s highly subsidised solar heating market

Tibet is currently in the focus of the Chinese central government’s efforts to improve the heating situation of the population. The lack of space heating in many buildings in the region, which is subject to a continental climate marked by cold winters, has prompted China’s government to support the installation of solar district heating systems. In addition to Chinese-Danish joint venture Arcon-Sunmark Large-Scale Solar Systems Integration, Chinese parabolic trough collector manufacturer Vicot Solar Technology has signed a contract with the local government to install a solar district heating system in the autonomous region of Tibet. The entire installation will have 18,000 m2 of aperture area which is defined as the flat, rectangular area specified by the outer perimeter of the mirrors.

02.04.2018

2017 ranking of the world’s largest flat plate collector manufacturers

The annual ranking of the world's largest flat plate collector manufacturers is now published on solarthermalworld.org. It based on a survey among the largest industry players carried out by solrico agency. The 2017 ranking clearly shows the market dominance of Chinese companies.

21.03.2018

Germany: Solar thermal loses out to other renewables

In Germany 2017 was the weakest year for solar thermal collector sales in more than a decade, according to the combined statistics by associations BDH and BSW-Solar. Their data reveals that only 78,000 systems were sold last year. The newly installed collector area added up to 625,000 m², down 16 % from 2016 and as much as 72 % from the boom year of 2008. It was an astonishingly poor showing, considering the strong growth in the construction industry and the high incentive amounts available in Germany.

20.02.2018

District heating shows lower total socio-economic cost in future energy system

What would the economic impact on a future energy system be if one were to unlock the full solar thermal potential in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Italy? According to a study conducted by Aalborg University as part of the IEA SHC Task 52 research project Solar Heat and Energy Economics in Urban Environments, exploiting the maximum potential will result in significant cost reductions if solar heat is supplied not individually but by district heating.

31.01.2018

Three ways to read European market statistics

There is more than one way to read 2016’s market statistics published by Solar Heat Europe about 2 months ago. One could emphasise the great achievements made in reducing emissions and creating jobs in the solar heating and cooling sector in Europe (first part). One could likewise point to Denmark as a leader in solar district heating. A third possibility would be to concentrate on the continued decline in most key markets in Europe and the stark difference between renewable heating targets and their fulfilment in many countries (second part). You can download the 5-page brochure here.

27.01.2018

Namibia’s path to a solar thermal future

The Namibia Solar Thermal Technology (STT) Roadmap outlines the country’s path to 1.5 million m² of collector area by 2030. The aim is to have an average 0.5 m² installed per inhabitant by then.

24.01.2018

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