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World’s largest flat plate collector manufacturers in 2017

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on March 19, 2018
The 2017 ranking of the world’s largest flat plate collector producers clearly shows the market dominance of Chinese companies. Even second-ranked Greenonetec, an Austrian collector manufacturer, is now majority-owned by the Chinese-based Haier Group. The corporation acquired 51 % of the manufacturer’s shares on 18 May 2017. The largest European flat plate collector producer was heating technology supplier Bosch Thermotechnik, although it remained at a certain distance from the top four. Business at Bosch Thermotechnik suffered from declining solar hot water markets in Germany (-16 %) and Brazil (-18 %). Nearly all the companies outside Germany increased production last year.
Source: Data supplied by manufacturers

Spain’s 2017 figures show increase in collector production despite declining market

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on March 6, 2018
2017 saw the Spanish solar thermal market dropping by 5 % to 201,505 m2, or 141 MWth, but surpassing 4 million m2 overall, totalling 4,106,195 m2, or 2.87 GWth. The main reason for the downward trend had been the poor showing of regional support schemes, Spain’s solar thermal industry federation, ASIT, said. Still, economic growth is bolstering the construction sector, and a rising number of newbuilds might put the market back on track this year. In addition, the collector industry showed a 33 % increase, to 198,525 m2, in 2017. Most of the amount, 63 % to be precise, was exported.
Source: ASIT

Three ways to read European market statistics

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on January 27, 2018
Solar Heat EuropeThere is more than one way to read 2016’s market statistics published by Solar Heat Europe about 2 months ago. One could emphasise the great achievements made in reducing emissions and creating jobs in the solar heating and cooling sector in Europe. One could likewise point to Denmark as a leader in solar district heating. A third possibility would be to concentrate on the continued decline in most key markets in Europe and the stark difference between renewable heating targets and their fulfilment in many countries. You can download the 5-page brochure here.

French PVT market is picking up

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on December 22, 2017
DualsunThe IEA’s Solar Heating and Cooling Programme will create its own international research platform on PVT systems in January 2018. Researchers and industry representatives from 13 countries so far will then start evaluating new PVT systems for HVAC solutions. This IEA SHC task, which is planned to run until the end of 2020, is being announced at a time when the PVT market in several European countries, such as France and Switzerland, is picking up speed. Experts with an R&D or manufacturing background are welcome to join the platform (see the contact details at the end of this news article). 
Photo: Dualsun

Maintenance as New Business Option in Spain

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on December 8, 2017
Recently, maintenance has gained popularity among Spanish solar thermal installers, according to the country’s national solar industry association, ASIT. Its general secretary, Pascual Polo, has been working to encourage the association’s members and end users to have solar thermal equipment undergo regular maintenance checks. Inspections carried out in Madrid and Barcelona have shown that the output of around one-third of the solar thermal systems installed in both municipalities based on the Technical Building Code, CTE, do not meet expectations (link to 
Photo: Solar del Valle

Spain: Marketing Activities Foster SHIP Market

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on November 29, 2017
SHIP plantsThe Spanish market for Industrial Solar Heat (SHIP) is still small: Currently, there are only three installations ongoing across the country (see screen shot). Now, the Spanish Solar Concentra platform intends to support market development by identifying 130 potential industrial SHIP clients with no access to the piped natural gas grid, but sufficient space for a solar thermal installation in the south of Spain. Diego Crespo, Project Engineer at the Protermosolar association, the coordinator of Solar Concentra, presented this approach during a webinar on 16 November. The organiser of the webinar, Spanish-based consultancy ATA Insights, has uploaded a recording and his presentation to its website.

Spain: Stakeholder Platform Solplat to Promote New Applications

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on November 14, 2017
SolplatOn 4 October 2017, the Spanish Ministry of Economy hosted the first general meeting of the newly created Technology Platform on Low Temperature Solar Thermal, Solplat. Funded by the ministry and promoted by Spain’s solar association ASIT, the umbrella platform was created to help companies, public authorities and universities support and improve segments which have seen fairly little market penetration to date. Examples are district heating, solar process heat and Nearly Zero Energy Buildings (NZEBs).

IEA´s Renewables Outlook 2017-2022

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on October 31, 2017
IEA Renewables 2017 forecastThe IEA’s Renewables 2017 market report was launched in London in early October. The document, which had been called Medium-Term Renewable Energy Market Report until last year, is published annually and forecasts market development in renewable electricity over the next five years (2017 to 2022). Considering that renewable markets are closely linked and politicians are increasingly looking for cross-sector solutions, we have compiled the IEA’s most important conclusions regarding renewable electricity in this news article. A lack of data on renewable heating and cooling (RHC) means that the IEA does not provide a separate RHC forecast, but instead uses the World Energy Model results published in the annual World Energy Outlook.
Source: Renewables 2017

World Bank Supports Solar Concentrating Solutions for Industry

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on October 23, 2017
Poll ResultsOn 18 October 2017, speakers from three continents joined a webinar initiated by the World Bank and the Clean Technology Fund and hosted by Spanish-based consultancy ATA Insights to talk about opportunities for concentrating solar thermal in industry. Martin Haagen from Industrial Solar, a German-based Fresnel collector manufacturer, analysed solar heat in industry at the macro-level. Rodrigo Mancilla, Executive Director of the Chilean Economic Development Agency, CORFO, gave his thoughts on solar heat in mining, and Eyas Al-Zadjali, Project Development Manager at Glasspoint based in Oman, spoke about the ongoing construction work for Miraah, a plant to generate solar steam for enhanced oil recovery. Additionally, opinion polls during the event asked, for example, what the around 270 participants thought was the best public support mechanism to kick-start concentrating solar thermal deployment (see the screenshot above).

EU Renewables Directive Revision Could Give New Impetus to Solar Thermal

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on October 17, 2017
The European Parliament is planning to vote on a revised Renewable Energy Directive next February. About 1,300 amendments had been submitted until July 2017 related to the first draft of the revised directive from November 2016 (see attached document). The amendments are currently discussed by the members of the ITRE (Industry, Research and Energy) Committee. The main task of José Blanco López (see photo), a Spanish ITRE member and the rapporteur of the Directive draft, is to reach an agreement on the so-called compromise amendments. They are to represent the shared view of the committee, so that the directive can secure enough support in parliament. Its members are scheduled to vote on these ITRE amendments on 28 November and the solar thermal industry is looking to ensure that the solar thermal sector isn’t being left out of the loop.


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