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USA: California Solar Initiative to Add Technologies to Eligibility List

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on June 13, 2013

The California Solar Initiative (CSI) is further extending the number of system types eligible for its CSI – Solar Thermal programme. Already in December 2012, California’s Governor, Edmund Brown, signed a law stipulating that solar heating of commercial pools is to be incorporated into the subsidy scheme. In March 2013, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) published the Final Decision, specifying that solar cooling, space heating and process heat systems should be eligible technologies within the CSI – Solar Thermal. The CPUC, however, still has to work out the specific rule set, something which might delay implementation. The pie chart shows the share of system suppliers within CSI by the end of May 2013. By then, the programme’s administrators had received 1,400 grant applications, half of which had included the system supplier’s name.
Source: CSI – Solar Thermal

Preliminary RHC and SDH Conference Programmes Available for Download

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on March 12, 2013

The preliminary programmes of the 4th European Conference on Renewable Heating and Cooling, which will take place from 22 to 23 April in Dublin, Ireland, and for the SDH conference from 9 to 10 April in Malmö, Sweden, are now available for download at their event websites. The photo shows the solar thermal panel at last year’s RHC conference in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Photo: ESTIF

USA: New US Solar Heating and Cooling Alliance

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on February 26, 2013

A strong voice for the solar thermal industry: that is the aim of the new US Solar Heating and Cooling Alliance (SHC Alliance), a division of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). SEIA announced the new elected board in a press release on 19 February 2013. The US Solar Heating and Cooling Council which governs the SHC Alliance consists of five persons. First, there are Chairman Mike Healy from Skyline Innovations (left), Vice Chairman Matt Carlson from Sunnovations (middle) and Treasurer Eileen Prado from the Solar Rating and Certification Corporation (SRCC). The other two positions will rotate and are currently held by Les Nelson, International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO), and Ole Pilgaard from Heliodyne. Only the chairperson and vice-chairperson, however, occupied formal positions within SEIA, another press release stated in January 2013.
Photos: Sunnovations, Skyline Innovations, SRCC

Sweden: Vacuum Tube Produces Heat and Cold Depending on Day or Night

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on February 25, 2013

The latest development of Swedish Company ClimateWell is called CoolStore and can be integrated into a collector casing. ClimateWell offers this special vacuum tube, which produces heat or cold, to interested collector manufacturers. The former producer of absorption chillers has completely altered its product range to become a component supplier for boilers and air-conditioners for vehicles. The new product, however, has still not been entirely uncovered in the figure above, because “we do not want to disclose too much yet”, explains ClimateWell’s CEO, Per Olofsson. “The idea of the CoolStore tube is that solar cooling needs to be simpler and more efficient to really work on the market. At the same time, we also wanted lower cooling temperatures for efficient air-conditioning and dehumidification.”
Figure: ClimateWell

Europe: Conferences for New Solar Thermal Applications

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on February 12, 2013

The first of half of this year will see many conferences and fairs on solar thermal technologies at locations all around the world (see the Calendar of Events): The solarthermalworld.org database alone shows 61 events in 31 countries. Meanwhile, the events have become more diversified – a testimony to the many different application areas of solar thermal. With this news piece, solarthermalworld.org will present some particularly interesting events, which focus on solar district heating, renewable heat, process heat and the latest technology. Please let us know if you think the database is missing any important solar heating and cooling dates (epp@solrico.com).

Austria: More and Less Successful Subsidy Schemes

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on January 18, 2013

Austria´s solar thermal market has come to depend a great deal on incentive programmes. The schemes in 2012, however, met with varying degrees of success. Demand was again great for the subsidy programme for large-scale solar thermal plants  administered by the Austrian Climate and Energy Fund. The chart shows the share of the different applications among the 39 projects approved in 2012, the third consecutive year in which the programme was running. On the other hand, demand for the first federal residential grant programme, which supported the purchase of solar thermal systems of 5 m² of collector area or more with EUR 400, was not satisfying. Only one-third of the EUR 5 million budget was spent last year.
Source: Austria Climate and Energy Fund

India: Solar Mission Phase II Targets 8 Million m²

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on January 4, 2013

In December 2012, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy in India published its plans for Phase II of the National Solar Mission (NSM). The 58-page document outlines the policy for the second phase, including targets, the role of the states and an implementation strategy (see the attached document). The overall aim is to install around 8 million m² of collector area between March 2013 and March 2017 – in addition to the 6.07 million m² of collector area which had already been commissioned until November 2012. The cumulative target until the end of Phase I (March 2013) is 7 million m², and the country will, in fact, be on course to reach this number. Since the start of Phase I of the NSM in June 2010, the country has witnessed the installation of close to 2.5 million m² of collector area totally. The photo shows a solar water heating unit in central India.
Photo: Jaideep Malaviya

Renewable Energy in Industrial Applications. An assessment of the 2050 potential (2010)

Submitted by Raquel Ponte Costa on November 12, 2012

Up to 21% of all final energy use and feedstock in manufacturing industry can be provided by renewable energies by 2050, concludes UNIDO, the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation, on this report published in 2010.

The publication sheds some light on the use of renewable energies (biomass, solar thermal, heat pumps) in industrial applications. Although widely known for its use in residential applications, renewable energies are less common in manufacturing.  

The Potential Application of Residential Cooling in the UK and the Role of Thermal Energy Storage Technologies (2007)

Submitted by Raquel Ponte Costa on October 17, 2012

This paper is taken from the proceedings of the 2nd PALENC conference and 28th AIVC conference on Building Energy Cooling and Advanced Ventilation Technologies in the 21st Century. It explores the potential cooling demand in a dwelling in the UK and the potential use of solar thermal cooling systems.  As UK Building regulations demand better insulated and more airtight new buildings, the demand for cooling as begun to escalate in UK new build dwellings.

France: 20 Years Solar Cooling Kept Promises

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on October 1, 2012

It was the first in France in the private food sector and one of the first in Europe – the solar cooling system in the cellar of the GICB winery (Groupement Interproducteurs du Cru de Banyuls) in the south of France. In 1991, successful experiences with solar cooling could rarely be found and investors, as well as donors, were hesitant to endorse the new technology. “It took a lot of work to convince Michel Jomain, former Managing Director of GICB, to get together the funds needed for this ambitious project,” French engineering company Tecsol recalls in an article published in the latest issue of its magazine, Plein Soleil. The installation was designed by Tecsol engineer Louis Casals who paid a lot of attention to minimising the risk of failure. With success! Performance data over 20 years show clearly that the system kept its promises.
Photo: Tecsol

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