California Solar Initiative dominated by multi-family houses

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on May 25, 2018
Source: California Public Utilities CommissionIn 2017, the California Solar Initiative (CSI) – Thermal Program supported the installation of 20,000 m² of collector area, a 20 % increase over the prior year. With 10,832 m², or four times the area installed in 2016, multi-family buildings dominated the subsidy landscape for those 12 months. The surge was a result of a temporary increase in the incentive amount, from USD 29.85 per therm displaced to USD 70, granted across the service area of Southern California Gas Company. The chart, for which data has been supplied by the California Public Utilities Commission, shows the collector area subsidised and installed from 2010 to 2017.
Source: California Public Utilities Commission

Webinar: SHC Market and Industry Trends 2017

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on May 22, 2018
Solar AcademyThe next Solar Academy webinar on Tuesday 12 June 2018 from 3:00 to 4:30 PM CEST (Central European Summer Time) will highlight the key data and findings of the two most recent SHC market reports: Solar Heat Worldwide. Global Market Development and Trends in 2017 from IEA Solar Heating and Cooling Programme (IEA SHC) and Renewables 2018. Global Status Report from REN21. Further information and registration is available online.
 

Solar steam for process heat and air conditioning

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on May 18, 2018
Photo: Industrial SolarGerman Fresnel collector manufacturer Industrial Solar has completed its second industrial solar heat installation in Jordan. Three years after it had put into operation a Fresnel field at pharmaceuticals company Ram Pharma, a 700 kW concentrating collector system came online at tobacco manufacturer Japan Tobacco International, also known as JTI, in late 2017. The solar steam that the new system produces is used in two ways. It is injected into the steam grid to supply process heat to manufacturing and it powers a new installed double-effect absorption chiller to provide on-site buildings with air conditioning. JTI regards the solar steam unit as a strategic investment to demonstrate its commitment to establishing sustainable supply chains and, especially, to reducing the carbon footprint of its global operations.
Photo: Industrial Solar

On-site collector testing: new standard in development

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on May 17, 2018
Photo: Riccardo BattistiOnce a large solar field is set up at its designated location, what tests can be conducted to show that it performs as expected? Soon, the IEA Solar Heating & Cooling Programme may have an answer to this question, as it is working on internationalising Denmark’s testing procedure. No decision has been made on whether the procedure will become part of a full-fledged standard or be turned into a technical specification. 
Photo: Riccardo Battisti

Energy efficiency funding in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on May 11, 2018
Map: lonelyplanet.comThe Jugoslav Wars of the 1990s slowed down the rate of energy-related retrofits in the residential and public sectors of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Recently, however, the country has seen some improvement in the amount of funding available for clean heating technologies, such as solar thermal, biomass boilers and heat pumps. In early April, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, or EBRD for short, provided MKF Partner, a Bosnian microfinance institution, with EUR 5 million for low-interest loans and grants to make residential buildings more energy-efficient. It was the second time the EBRD had allocated funding to financial institutions in the country. Last November, EUR 17 million went to three Bosnian banks, as part of the EBRD’s Green Economy Financing Facility. 
Map: lonelyplanet.com

How to identify suitable areas for SDH

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on May 9, 2018
Chart: Hamburg InstitutThough the availability of areas for large solar district heating plants remains a major point of contention, there are ways to expand the market. They include detailed local heat plans, the use of unconventional, e.g., polluted or contaminated, areas, and awareness raising among public and private stakeholders. A webinar organised as part of the Horizon 2020 project SDHp2m…from Policy to Market put a spotlight on these topics in February. A recording of the session is available online.
Chart: Hamburg Institut
 

First Spanish solar district heating system for 12,000 families

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on May 7, 2018
Source: Ayuntamiento de Alcalá de HenaresIn February, Alcalá Ecoenergías signed a deal to construct a district heating system powered by solar and biomass in Alcalá de Henares, a city in Spain. The agreement between the local company and the municipal government will lead to one of the country’s first-ever large-scale solar district heating systems, intended to provide 12,000 homes with renewable heat. The EUR 38 million investment, of which EUR 32 million have been allocated for biomass and EUR 6 million for solar thermal, near Spain’s capital of Madrid is expected to be completed by late 2019 (see the design study on the left). Several other solar district heating projects are under development. 
Source: Ayuntamiento de Alcalá de Henares

Record participation at SDH 2018 in Graz

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on May 3, 2018
Photo: Climate and Energy FundThe 5th International Solar District Heating Conference, which took place in Graz, Austria, in mid-April, brought together 350 experts from 33 countries. It had twice as many attendees as the previous one in Billund, Denmark, in 2016 and attracted representatives from several development banks, such as the German KfW, the London-based European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the World Bank via its group member International Finance Corporation, or IFC. The photo shows the conference’s supporters and its three organisers, namely Christian Fink (second from left), Austrian research institute AEE INTEC; Thomas Pauschinger (fifth from left in the back), German research institute Solites; and  Werner Lutsch, Managing Director of the German Heat & Power Association, or AGFW for short (second from right). 
Photo: Climate and Energy Fund

Building-integrated solar envelopes: barriers to deployment

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on May 2, 2018
Solar FacadeActive and passive solar systems integrated into building envelopes are key to combatting climate change. However, there are many barriers which confine current solutions to the demonstration stage and prevent them from going mainstream. To increase the size of the market, researchers have examined these barriers as part of Task 56, Building Integrated Solar Envelope Systems for HVAC and Lighting, under the auspices of the IEA Solar Heating & Cooling Programme. Their report will not be available until September 2018, but this article contains a summary of the main conclusions.
Photo: Riccardo Battisti

The slow but steady growth of Russia’s solar thermal industry

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on May 2, 2018
Photo: New PolusThe Russian collector industry is growing steadily, despite a lack of state support and the impact of the financial crisis. This has been the key message of a Ministry of Industry and Trade report broadcasted on the popular Channel 1 on TV and confirmed by solar thermal expert Professor Vitaly Butuzov. Butuzov estimates that Russia saw the installation of around 2,000 m² of collector area last year. According to the professor, the figure is slightly above the one for 2016, when a total of 500 m² was installed in the form of small systems in addition to the 736 m² collector field commissioned one year later at the Sochi railway station.
Photo: New Polus

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