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Germany: “Performance-based incentives for all solar thermal plants”

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on November 11, 2016
In spring 2015, Germany´s Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control (BAFA) introduced a performance-based incentive for solar heating as an alternative to the scheme offering incentives based on collector area. Recently published statistics have shown the new programme to grant higher financial support for about one-third of the currently funded projects. The others still receive funding from the previously established scheme. 
 

IEA SHC: Cost Reduction Analysis Workshops at German University of Stuttgart

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on September 8, 2016
Task54 Brussels WorkshopSystem cost reduction is one of the most urgent challenges of the solar thermal sector, especially in central Europe. The aim of Task 54 of the IEA Solar Heating and Cooling Programme, Price Reduction of Solar Thermal Systems, is to lower solar heat prices by up to 40 %. Germany’s main scientific contributions to the task have come from the two research projects KoST and TEWIsol, which have been co-funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy. The corresponding Task 54 meeting will take place in Stuttgart on 6/7 October (see the attached programme) in conjunction with a workshop on 5 October to present and discuss KoST and TEWIsol (12 p.m. to 4 p.m.; held in German). The photo shows the Task 54 workshop organised in collaboration with the European Solar Thermal Industry Federation in Brussels in May 2016.
Photo: Fraunhofer ISE
 

Europe: Market Decline Claims Four Victims in Collector Industry

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on November 17, 2015
WattOvercapacities in the collector industry, declining demand and the associated drop in collector prices have given European manufacturers a hard time. Over the last 12 months, four well-known collector manufacturers in four different countries have had serious financial troubles: Watt in Poland, Astersa in Spain, Solvis in Germany and Clipsol in France all followed fairly different approaches to cope with their financial problems. Only one, Astersa, has disappeared from the market – the other three manufacturers are still in business. The photo shows the inauguration of Watt´s production unit in Poland in 2011 which is put on hold at the moment.
Photo: Watt
 

Solar Cooling Week in China: Sector Still Growing in Asia and Europe

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on April 30, 2015
Solar Cooling WeekSolar thermal cooling is a “small, but steadily growing market,” Dr Uli Jakob from the Green Chiller Association for Sorption Cooling pointed out in his presentation Solar Air-Conditioning in Europe during the Solar Cooling Week, which took place in Shanghai from 23 to 27 March. The week started with two experts meetings of IEA SHC Task 48 (Quality Assurance and Support Measures for Solar Cooling Systems) and Task 53 (New Generation Solar Cooling and Heating Systems) on solar cooling and ended with the Solar Cooling Conference. About 80 % of the over 100 participants came from Asian countries. Conference Chairman Daniel Mugnier (see photo) thanked “Shanghai Jiao Tong University – and especially, Professor Yajun Dai  for having organised “a perfect Solar Cooling Week.” 
Photo: dr. jakob energy research
 

Germany: Housing Coop’s Monitored Solar Plants Achieve 500 kWh/m²

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on February 22, 2013

German company Parabel Energiesysteme has set up solar thermal systems with collector areas between 20 and 220 m² on, all in all, 450 buildings across Europe. More than 100 of these systems are part of a continuous monitoring programme. Their typical yield is 500 kWh/m² and year – impressively high for Germany. In January, a group of participants of the SMEThermal conference in Berlin, Germany, took a tour to a Parabel plant. The photo shows the area in the centre of Berlin where solar water heaters are placed on several roofs of the multi-family buildings as well as a kindergarten on the left.
Photo: Eva Augsten

Solar Keymark: Additional Table Allows Comparison of Annual Collector Output

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on October 1, 2012

The Solar Keymark certification is getting more consumer-friendly: Since the beginning of this year, the new certificate data sheets include a second page on the annual collector unit output for different solar radiation sites in Europe (Stockholm, Davos, Würzburg and Athens). The list shows the output at average collector temperatures of 25, 50 and 75 °C. For example: The new optimised Aqua Plasma collector 19/17 by German collector producer Ritter achieves 1,106 kWh per collector unit and year in Würzburg (50 °C). The gas-filled flat plate collector PS1-52 Joule by Austrian company Geo-Tec achieves 793 kWh at the same location. Both collectors were launched this year with a gross collector area of 1.69 m² and were presented at the Intersolar Europe in June. The listed output should now give end consumers a good hint at what they get for their money.

Germany: Solar Thermal Experts Discuss Cost-Cutting Strategies

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on February 23, 2012

 Audience at SMEThermal 2012The solar thermal industry is facing major challenges: Costs of storage and collector components have to be reduced even further if large solar plants are to offer investors competitive prices for heating. Hence, 170 industry representatives and scientists from all around the world came together at the international industry conference SMEThermal 2012 in Berlin at the beginning of February 2012 to explore cost-cutting strategies during a round-table discussion.
Photo: Solarpraxis AG / Therese Aufschlager

Germany: Disparity between Photovoltaic and Solar Heating and Cooling increases

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on November 30, 2010

 Schueco Heating System” In Germany, the disparity between the photovoltaic market on the one side and the solar heating and cooling market on the other is increasing. “Whereas in 2004, the turnover of the PV sector with EUR 1.2 billion was twice as high as the turnover of the solar thermal industry, it rose to ten times the revenues of the solar heating and cooling sector last year,” Joachim Berner, journalist and solar thermal expert, argues in an article in Sonne Wind & Wärme.. In absolute figures: EUR 1.2 billion of solar heating and cooling versus EUR 11 billion of photovoltaics.
Figure: Schüco

Germany: Backlash against Solar Heating and Cooling Sector

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on October 5, 2010

Prospects for the German solar thermal industry remain gloomy. For the second time in a row, the market has shrunk significantly. The installed collector area in 2009 (1,615,000 m2) was already 23 % less than the record figure in 2008 (2,100,000 m2). In 2010, however, installation figures have again been down from last year's figures by around 20 %. “The drop in installations is hurting the industry badly, because most German collector and tank manufacturers have just invested in new production facilities, which are now running below capacity,” Helmut Jäger, Second Chairman of solar industry association BSW Solar and Managing Director of Solvis, a manufacturer and supplier of renewable heating systems, says.

Turkey: Ezinc Celebrates a Total of 3,000,000 m2 of Produced Collector Area

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on February 15, 2010

 jubilee collector of Ezinc” Jubilee collector on display in the headquarters building: This collector panel completed in December 2009 the total of 3,000,000 m2 of produced collector area Turkish manufacturer Ezinc Metal San. has produced since it started production in 1983. Photo: Ezinc

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