Thursday, September 23, 2010


Recurrent Energy and Sharp Corp. have reached a definitive agreement for Sharp to acquire Recurrent Energy, a solar project developer and generating company with a 2 GW pipeline. The acquisition is expected to close before the end of this year, subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals.

The terms of the agreement call for Sharp to pay up to $305 million in cash at closing, subject to balance-sheet adjustments, to purchase a 100% stake from Recurrent Energy shareholders. Recurrent Energy is a Hudson Clean Energy Partners portfolio company. Other shareholders include Mohr Davidow Ventures.

Recurrent Energy will retain its name, operating as a subsidiary of Sharp. Arno Harris, CEO of Recurrent Energy, will retain his title and continue to lead the company following the acquisition. Harris will report to Toshishige Hamano, Sharp's executive vice president responsible for overseas business. Recurrent Energy's executive team and employees will also continue with the company.

SOURCE: Recurrent Energy
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enXco, an EDF Energies Nouvelles company, and Portland General Electric (PGE) have entered into two power purchase agreements for solar photovoltaic installations to be located in the Willamette Valley near Salem, Ore. The two installations will combine for a total of 2.84 MW of generating capacity, providing power for approximately 2,300 homes at peak production.

enXco will develop, build and own the thin-film solar projects. PGE will purchase the power generated under a 25-year power purchase agreement. The projects are expected to commence construction in early 2011 and reach commercial operation in July 2011. enXco Service Corp. will operate and maintain the projects.

"These projects represent the largest ground-mounted solar PV installations in the Pacific Northwest, as well as the first solar development for enXco in the region," notes Troy Gagliano, project developer at enXco.

Both sites are located in the southeastern portion of Yamhill County. The Bellevue Solar project site will produce 1.69 MW, and the Yamhill Solar Project site will produce 1.15 MW. The projects will connect to the existing PGE utility system.

SOURCE: Portland General Electric
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The highest demand for PV inverters this year will come from both the smallest and the largest three-phase inverters, according a recently released report on the market from IMS Research. Shipments of inverters rated below 35 kW and above 500 kW are growing nearly 50% faster than the rest of the market.

The PV inverter market has achieved remarkable growth in the past few years, overcoming the collapse of the Spanish market to produce record shipments in 2009 - a feat set to be broken again in 2010 with close to 17 GW of shipments, IMS Research says. This growth has attracted many new entrants to the market, especially suppliers already active in similar markets.

However, although these suppliers have transferred their expertise in high power and produced large central inverters, it is the smaller three-phase products that are predicted to capture a greater share in the short term.

IMS Research’s recently published report has revealed that shipments of small three-phase inverters rated around 10 kW to 20kW are forecast to grow by around 170% this year. Inverters rated at over 500 kW are projected to grow at a similar rate but will capture a smaller share of the market.

In the longer-term, however, much faster growth is predicted for these larger inverters, with utility-scale installations emerging rapidly – although, due to their inherently lower price per watt, these inverters will still only account for 10% of revenues in 2014, the report says.

"Recently, demand for PV inverters in commercial installations appears to be splitting into two clear categories: very small three-phase products or very large central inverters," says Tom Haddon, PV research analyst at IMS. "While mid-sized central inverters offer a lower initial investment cost, shipments of inverters in the 10 kW to 20 kW range have increased massively in 2010, with a range of new models being released by major suppliers such as SMA, Kaco, SolarMax and Power-One.

"These products offer greater system design flexibility, easier installation and higher energy yields, and also better grid integration - a crucial factor, given the medium-voltage directive and reactive power legislation in Germany," Haddon adds.

Although it is forecast that these units will lose some market share to larger central inverters in the longer term as the emerging markets of the U.S., India and China drive demand for megawatt-sized substations, in the medium term, smaller three-phase models are forecast to be one of the prime revenue generators, as their adaptable nature can be applied to installations ranging from small commercial to multi-megawatt utility-scale installations.

SOURCE: IMS Research
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Fotowatio Renewable Ventures (FRV) has begun a major expansion of the Colorado State University (CSU) solar plant at the Foothills Campus. The 3.3 MW addition, which will be located adjacent to the 2 MW facility that opened in December 2009 on Chrisman Field, is expected to be completed within four months, according to FRV.

With the expansion, the entire project will generate a total of 8.5 million kWh of electricity annually.

FRV will own the solar facility and will be responsible for operating and maintaining it over the 20-year contract term. FRV and CSU have entered into a power purchase agreement that enables CSU to purchase the electricity produced by the plant at a fixed rate for 20 years, without any up-front cost to the university. The university also has the option to purchase the solar plant at the end of the 20-year contract for the fair market value. At that time, the university could claim the full value of the renewable energy credits (RECs) generated by the plant.

The project is part of the Xcel Energy Solar Rewards program. Xcel will purchase the RECs generated by the system in support of Colorado’s renewable portfolio standard, which requires utilities to generate 30% of their power from renewable energy sources by 2020.

Global Energy Services will install the project as an FRV contractor. Advanced Energy, based in Ft. Collins, Colo., is supplying the inverters for the project.

SOURCE: Fotowatio Renewable Ventures
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ART TEC Solar has developed the DTC-D solar differential temperature controller, which is designed specifically for PV-powered collector circulation pumps used in solar heating systems.

This digital controller includes an internal battery backup that allows the controller to continue to display current temperatures and record maximum/minimum temperatures in the absence of solar power for several days, the company says. The controller's backlight makes it easy to read in dark utility rooms.

Features include max temperature shutoff, with optional over-temperature audible alarm, freeze alarm with optional freeze pumping for systems that operate from batteries, and resettable max/min display of recent temperature extremes. Front-panel controls allow easy changes to settings and manual override of the pump to on, off and auto modes, the company adds.

The new differential temperature controller will be available in November.

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1 comment:

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