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Solar Thermal Federation of India

Big Ups and Downs on Global Market

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on April 26, 2016
The global solar thermal market went into another year of notable decline in 2015. With 37.2 GWth, the newly installed glazed and unglazed collector capacity in the 18 largest countries was 14 % lower than in 2014 (43.4 GWth). Between 2013 and 2014, the decrease in these 18 major countries – which represent 95-97 % of the world market – had been 15 %. The further slowdown last year was the result of diminishing collector area figures in China (-17 %), and in Europe (nine biggest nations down by -5 %). The countries with the highest growth rates last year were Denmark (+55 %), Turkey (+10 %), Israel (+9 %) and Mexico (+8 %). The chart shows both 2015’s newly installed collector area, broken down by collector type – flat plate, vacuum tube and unglazed collector area, and the 2014-2015 growth rate (excluding China, whose 2015 market volume was 21-times larger than Turkey, which ranked second). China added 30.5 GWth in 2015 of which 12.6 % were flat plate collectors (5.5 million m2). 
Figures: solrico, data: see bottom of the article

India: Phase I Results of National Solar Mission

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on July 27, 2013

The Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission was launched in January 2010 as one of the eight Missions under Climate Change in India and was to be implemented by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE). It set an ambitious target for the solar thermal sector: 20 million m² of totally installed collector area by 2022. To attract investments, the federal government extended a capital subsidy of 30% on the basic cost of the system and has offered a 5% interest loan on 80% of the benchmark costs. The announced subsidy was INR 3,300 (about 47 EUR) per m² for systems with flat plate collectors (FPC) and INR 3,000 (about 42 EUR) per m² for vacuum tube collector (VTC) systems (see database of incentive programmes).

India: Drop Vacuum Tube Collector Subsidy?

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on June 14, 2013

To protect local solar photovoltaic manufacturers, the Indian government has made it mandatory in its National Solar Mission to use locally made cells and modules. There is no such rule for the solar thermal sector, in which the state subsidises 30 to 60 % of the price of a solar water heater, although a growing number of vacuum tubes have been imported from China. First assessments of the database of the national incentive programme SOLARWHIN show that 75 % of the applications include vacuum tubes and only industrial applications have used flat plate collectors (FPCs). Malaviya Solar Energy Consultancy has asked a few of the leading manufacturers if the subsidies for solar water heaters based on vacuum tubes should be removed, in order to protect the local industry and also to reduce the government’s financial burden with the subsidy scheme.
Photo: Jaideep Malaviya

India: Industry Shifts to Vacuum Tube Collectors

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on May 1, 2013

The renewed growth of the Indian solar thermal market has existing manufacturers expanding their production capacities and integrating vertically. Solar water heaters based on vacuum tube collectors are a popular product, already covering around 40 % of the newly installed 1 million m2 collector area in 2011/2012, according to estimations by market stakeholders. An example is Inter Solar Systems from the northern Indian city of Chandigarh. The company has invested INR 8.6 million (about EUR 120,000) in a completely new and semi-automated solar tank production plant, which was commissioned at the end of last year. The photo shows a punching machine for vacuum tube collector tanks.
Photo: Jaideep Malaviya

India: MNRE Assures Quicker Subsidy Disbursement

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on March 15, 2013

Tarun Kapoor, Joint Secretary of the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy in India, had invited all channel partners of the federal incentive programme to a meeting in New Delhi on 31 January 2013. Out of the 68 partners, 42 followed the invitation to discuss the pending subsidy payments and the targets in fiscal year 2013/2014. Kapoor assured that all subsidy claims would be settled as soon as possible. He set the target for 2013-2014 at a newly installed collector area of 2 million m² (see the attached report). “This ambitious target will generate a sense of confidence for future business activities in the Indian solar thermal sector,” the Joint Secretary said at the meeting.

India: CEO Panel Calls for Increased Efforts in R&D

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on January 16, 2012

 CEO panel at Intersolar IndiaThe discussion panel of the solar thermal industry was one of the star attractions at the Intersolar India conference, which took place at the Leela Kempinski Hotel in Mumbai in the middle of December. The panel consisted of the CEOs of leading solar water heater manufacturers (from right to left): Davinder Kaushal (Inter Solar Systems), D. V. Manjunatha (Emmvee Solar), Sanjay Jinturkar (Sudarshan Saur), Tarun Kapoor (Joint Secretary, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy), Hemant Revankar (Bipin Engineers), Gurminder Singh (Racold Solar), Sankar Dev Kunnath Kalam (Photon Solar) and Thyagamandlu Ananth (Nuetech Solar). The discussion was moderated by Jaideep N. Malaviya (standing on the left), CEO of the Solar Thermal Federation of India (STFI).
Photo: Intersolar

India: Revised Technical Specifications for How to Install and Insulate Solar Water Heaters

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on December 30, 2011

 Tank manufacturing at Indian company Anu Solar After publishing the Memorandum “Minimum Requirements for Installation of Solar Water Heating Systems in Field” in September 2011, India's Ministry of New and Renewable Energy issued a revised version of the guidelines on 25 November 2011. The Solar Thermal Federation of India (STFI) has successfully intervened against certain of its requirements. The photo shows the tank manufacturing at Indian company Anu Solar.
Photo: Anu Solar

India: MNRE Memorandum Bans Import of Storage Tanks, Manifolds and Mounting Systems

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on December 4, 2011

 Evacuated Tube Collectors Because of a comparably lower price, vacuum tube collectors are becoming more and more popular in India. Based on a capacity of 100 litres of warm water per day, an average thermosiphon system with flat plate collectors is sold at INR 20,000 (EUR 208), whereas a solar water heater with a vacuum tube collector costs on average INR 16,000 (EUR 167). To protect the business of the around 60 flat plate collector manufacturers in India, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) issued a memorandum on 20 October 2011. Its most important sentence says that, “manufacturers shall import no components other than ETCs (Evacuated Tube Collectors)”.

India: New national Helpline for Solar Water Heaters

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on September 28, 2011

 Helpline

As part of the Global Solar Water Heating Market Transformation and Strengthening Initiative (GSWH Project), the Indian Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has started a voice-activated National Helpline on Solar Water Heaters to raise awareness of the technology and answer the questions of consumers. The service, which has been operating since 15 September 2011, is managed by the Solar Thermal Federation of India (STFI). It has a toll-free number (1800 2 33 44 77), with service hours from 9:30 AM to 6:00 PM between Monday and Friday, and 9:30 AM to 1:30 PM on Saturdays. The two employed call centre agents offer help in both Hindi and English.

India’s First and Only Solar Thermal e-Newsletter Launched

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on September 17, 2011

 InSolTherm Times To spread information about the various developments in the country's solar thermal market, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) and the Solar Thermal Federation of India (STFI) have started India’s first and only solar thermal e-Newsletter: InSolTherm Times. The monthly publication was formally launched on 1 August 2011 by MNRE Secretary Deepak Gupta. Considering the substantial market growth of the solar water heating sector, there is a great need to share information about the latest trends in technologies and policy.

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