The solar thermal industry is debating whether it should introduce its own efficiency label for solar collectors. Uwe Trenkner, who was secretary general of the European Solar Thermal Industry Federation ESTIF from 2005 to 2009, explains in a commentary why he rejects this idea.
The German government intends to equip old heaters with an efficiency label starting on 1 January 2016. The purpose of this measure is to encourage owners of inefficient heaters to replace them sooner. This could set an example for the rest of the EU.
During recent years, many manufacturing sites for solar thermal collectors in German-speaking countries have been closed down. Ratiotherm Heizung & Solartechnik has decided to go against the trend and has opened a production site to manufacture its own range of solar collectors for pitched and flat roof systems. The plant is located in the Bavarian municipality of Dollnstein.
The heating technology company Bosch Thermotechnik has installed a 208-m² solar thermal plant at a hotel in India. The type of substructure used is particularly interesting.
Due to Californian draughts, 2015 was the second year in which agriculture in the Central Valley was left with a water allocation of 0 %. A company wants to fix this problem using solar thermal technology to recycle unusable water for agricultural irrigation.
The solar thermal market across Europe shrank again in 2014. The overall amount of newly-installed collector area fell by 7%. Nonetheless, some countries are growing against the trend.