In this issue

Germany: Today’s System Suppliers Wary of Fixed-Price Marketing Campaigns


IEA SHC: Coordinating Thermal Energy Storage Research Worldwide

Denmark: Arcon-Sunmark Announces Silkeborg Solar Plant Development

Germany: 2Power PVT Modules Supply Power and Heat from Same Roof Space

India: Tax Reform May Lead to System Price Increases

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UAE: Solar Thermal More Attractive than Photovoltaics

Dear Solarthermalworld.org Reader, 

 

Demand for solar thermal solutions has been on the rise in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. The reasons: Since March 2012, mandatory solar regulations have stipulated that new single-owner buildings, such as hotels, workers’ dwellings, private villas and shopping malls must cover at least 75 % of their annual hot water by solar resources. Increasing energy prices over the past years have also prompted a number of hotels to upgrade their hot water systems to more efficient versions running on solar, heat pumps or a combination of both technologies. In addition, newbuilds in many areas of Dubai have been supplied with 20 to 30 % lower electricity capacities by the Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA), which has had building designers look for alternative sources of energy. The photo shows the installation at the Four Seasons Resort Dubai, a system which was set up by local solar hot water specialist Ecoval Trading in 2014. According to Ecoval´s Managing Director, Jim Sebastian Parambil, payback periods for PV are much longer than for solar thermal installations. 

 

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The Editorial Team

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Germany: Today’s System Suppliers Wary of Fixed-Price Marketing Campaigns
by Bärbel Epp

The German solar thermal market is still stuck in recession. The total collector area sold until the end of May was again down by 5.3 % compared to the previous year, according to the market statistics by the two associations BSW Solar and BDH. Installers are viewed as the bottleneck in the supply chain and an increasing number of solar thermal suppliers have run advert campaigns to try and reach end customers on their own. This article describes how the campaigns of the German system supplier, Sonnenkraft, have changed over the years. Nowadays, system suppliers are well advised not to cut the margins of installers or promote end-customer prices in order to avoid installer associations publicly protesting the decision.

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IEA SHC: Coordinating Thermal Energy Storage Research Worldwide
by Bärbel Epp
 

The key to the decarbonisation of the energy sector is new compact storage technology: It will require much R&D to develop market-ready products based on new storage designs with phase change and thermochemical materials (PCMs and TCMs). One strategy is to combine resources within international research programmes, such as the joint task Material and Component Development for Thermal Energy Storage planned within the IEA Technology Collaboration Programmes. Its two future operating agents, Wim van Helden (left) from Austrian AEE INTEC for the IEA Solar Heating and Cooling Programme and Andreas Hauer from the German Bavarian Center for Applied Energy Research (ZAE Bayern) for the IEA Energy Conservation through Energy Storage (ECES) programme, invite all interested researchers to Vienna, Austria, to attend the second Task Definition Meeting on 15 and 16 September 2016.

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Denmark: Arcon-Sunmark Announces Silkeborg Solar Plant Development
by Eva Augsten

On 13 July, Arcon-Sunmark, the Danish large-scale solar heating specialist, officially announced that as the chosen turnkey provider, it was beginning construction on the 156,694 m² solar district heating system (110 MWth) on behalf of the Danish city of Silkeborg and its district heating company Silkeborg Forsyning. The plant is scheduled for completion by the end of the year and will then be the largest solar district heating system worldwide. Although industry insiders had known for months that Arcon-Sunmark had won the contract for the Silkeborg solar plant, the successful conclusion of the tender invitation was not officially announced until after collector retesting for the Solar Keymark certificate had been completed.

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Germany: 2Power PVT Modules Supply Power and Heat from Same Roof Space
by Eva Augsten
 

PVT Modules combine the generation of solar heat and solar electricity. For many years, products have entered and disappeared from the market without leaving much of a trace. German company PA-ID has installed around 8,000 2Power panels, at almost 500 project sites. The 2Power elements consist of standard PV laminates with a polymer heat exchanger at the back, enclosed by insulation. In July, a group toured to the so far largest installation with 121 kWth and 44 kWel in Unterliederbach, a suburb of the German city of Frankfurt.

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India: Tax Reform May Lead to System Price Increases
by Jaideep Malaviya
In India, there are multiple indirect taxes levied on most transactions. These taxes are divided into those collected by the federal government and the ones collected by state authorities. At the beginning of August, the Indian parliament passed the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Bill, which aims for a radical overhaul of the country’s tax system by merging federal, state and local taxes. The GST is expected to improve the way business is conducted, make foreign investment more attractive and increase the gross domestic product by between 1.5 and 2 %. But the renewable energy industry may take a hit. All tax incentives will end under the new GST regime, which is to be implemented by 1 April 2017.
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