Wednesday, May 30, 2007

The Mainstream

According to a new Worldwatch report,

"Solar power should become a mainstream energy choice in three or four years as companies raise output of a key ingredient used in solar panels and as China emerges as a producer of them, according to a report by an environmental research group.

"We are now seeing two major trends that will accelerate the growth of photovoltaics: the development of advanced technologies, and the emergence of China as a low-cost producer," Janet Sawin, a senior researcher at the Worldwatch Institute and an author of report, said in a statement.

Investors have flocked to solar and other renewable energy sources amid worries about the high costs of oil and natural gas and greenhouse gas emissions. Solar is the fastest growing energy source, but still provides less than 1% of the world's electricity, in part because its power can cost homeowners twice as much as power from the grid.

But costs could fall 40% in the next few years as polysilicon becomes more available, Sawin said.
Last year, China passed the United States to become the world's third largest producer of solar panels, trailing only Germany and Japan.

"To say that Chinese PV producers plan to expand production rapidly in the year ahead would be an understatement," Travis Bradford, president of the Prometheus Institute, a Massachusetts-based group that promotes renewables, said in a release.

"They have raised billions from international IPOs to build capacity and increase scale with the goal of driving down costs," said Bradford, who helped write the report." more

One of these Chinese companies is Suntech

Suntech Starts Construction Thin Film
R&D and Manufacturing Plant
Xinhua-PRNewswire via COMTEX News Network
May 23, 2007

One of the world's leading manufacturers of photovoltaic (PV) cells and modules, recently announced that it has begun construction on a thin film R&D and manufacturing facility in Caohejing Hi-tech Park in Shanghai, China. The first phase of the new plant is expected to begin operation in 2008 reaching 50MW of thin film solar cell production capacity in 2009.

Suntech's thin film module production will be based on technology that deposits amorphous and micro-crystalline silicon thin film on glass substrate. The product will use less than 2% of the silicon required to manufacture equivalent crystalline silicon PV products.

Suntech currently projects that the thin film modules will have a solar conversion efficiency of 6% to 9% and an initial production cost of approximately $1.20 per watt (based on 6% solar conversion efficiency), which is forecasted to continue to decline as both production scale and conversion efficiencies increase.

The thin film modules will be nearly 6 square meters in size, which would make the balance of system installation costs of Suntech's thin film solution significantly lower than other PV solutions. " more

Let me repeat, China passed the United States last year to become the world’s third largest producer of the cells—trailing only Germany and Japan.

The CEO of Suntech, Dr. Zhengrong Shi is active in Global Climate Change negotiations and is now one of the richest men in China as he brings solar energy into the mainstream of energy.

Meanwhile, the US continues to place their young ones

in front of bullets,

so the old ones can control the oil,

and reap the profits.

They will reap the Whirlwind instead.




Anonymous Anonymous said...

like this post.

The world appears to be getting on task now that it is hitting our pocketbooks.

And love your editorial reminder at the close.

Great choice of image.

8:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love the videos on your website.

How about those Chinese!!!

9:47 AM  
Blogger Solar Pundit said...

Even though solar has been accepted in Europe for a while, China is going to be the world powerhouse when it comes to the generation and implementation of solar energy. We in the US are falling behind at a rapid rate and are mired in oil discussions.

Solar Pundit

4:54 PM  
Blogger Charlie Loving said...

China is the coming giant it is true but they suffer from their own blindness.
When you read that the Chinese have polluted their entire water system. The Yangtze and Yellow Rivers are poisoned so badly that the WWF found that the damage was irreversible. Many rivers are just dry or mere trickles. The city of Xian dumps 1 million tons of untreated sewage into the YELLOW River every day and that is just one city. Some how it seems to me that water is going to be a lot more important than anything else in China when they come to gripes with the fact they can't grow anything that is edible and have no water to drink. But then maybe nature will win out in the end?

5:08 AM  

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