News for April 2012

News Archive

Algeria's first hybrid solar power plant to be serviced by Siemens

Siemens Energy will provide long-term maintenance services at Algeria’s first solar combined cycle hybrid power plant.

Vestas identifies cause for V112 wind turbine fire

Vestas says a loose connection in the electrical system started the fire in the V112 3 MW wind turbine at the Gross Eilstorf wind farm in Germany on 30 March.

Hydrogenics, Enbridge to grow utility-scale energy storage via hydrogen in gas grids

In Canada, Hydrogenics has signed an agreement with Enbridge to jointly develop utility-scale energy storage through adding hydrogen to the natural gas grids in North America.

IEA: Governments must accelerate clean energy deployment

Most clean energy technologies are not being deployed quickly enough despite technological progress, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA), which is urging governments to accelerate the use of clean and renewable energy.

REC closes remaining Norwegian solar production

The Renewable Energy Corporation (REC) is closing the remaining 650 MW multicrystalline wafer plant at Herøya, Norway, citing continued negative operating results due to falling wafer prices and increased competition from China.

Energy entrepreneurs and heat storage benefit from UK investment

As part of a range of recently announced green investments by the UK Government, the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) is investing £35 million in an Energy Entrepreneurs Fund and £3m in heat storage innovation.

UK invests £80m in small-scale waste infrastructure

The UK Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) has committed £80 million to two specialist fund managers who will make and manage investments in the small scale waste infrastructure sector, which includes energy-from-waste.

Bankrupt Solarhybrid sells off 201 MW of project rights in Israel

Solarhybrid AG, which filed for bankruptcy in March, has sold 201 MW of solar photovoltaic (PV) project rights acquired in January 2012 by its subsidiary Solarhybrid Israel, to Summit Energy LP of Israel.

ITM Power to study feasibility of injecting hydrogen into the gas grid

In the UK, ITM Power is leading a project to investigate the technical, financial, and operational feasibility of injecting hydrogen – generated from electrolysis fed from excess renewables – into the UK’s gas networks.

Gamesa and Toyota Spain join forces on electric vehicles

Gamesa and Toyota Spain will boost the use of electric vehicles in urban Spain under a collaboration agreement.

YEN42/kWh for solar in Japan

A government panel in Japan is recommending utilities to pay YEN42/kWh for 20 years for solar power in a proposed feed-in tariff scheme.

UK and US collaborate on floating wind

The UK and US will collaborate on floating wind under a new agreement to be finalised during this week's Clean Energy Ministerial in London.

Insolvent Q.Cells attracts interest from potential investors

Q.Cells SE, which filed for preliminary insolvency at the beginning of April, is already attracting interest from potential investors, according to administrator Henning Schorisch at HWW Wienberg Wilhelm Insolvenzverwalter.

Rurelec, Cascade hydro collaboration expands further into Peru

UK-based utility Rurelec has expanded further into Peru, with the acquisition of a 255MW hydro project currently under development.

Goldwind launches “ultra-low” wind speed turbine

Chinese wind turbine manufacturer Goldwind has launched its new wind turbine, designed for “ultra-low” wind speeds.

UK wind industry hits back with “public support” poll

The UK wind industry has hit back at its critics in Parliament and the press with the publication of a new poll that shows two thirds of the British public are in favour of wind farms.

SunPower merges Philippines manufacturing plants

US solar panel manufacturer SunPower Corp is to consolidate two of its Philippines manufacturing bases as part of a cost reduction programme.

Canada to test new biofeedstock in aviation fuel

Canadian researchers are set to test fly aircraft using biofuel made with a new industrialised oil-seed feedstock engineered especially for biofuel production.

China’s Long Yuan opts for GE for first overseas project

China’s largest wind power developer Long Yuan has opted for GE turbines for its first overseas project, a 100MW wind farm in Ontario, Canada.

Repower wins second supply contract with Renerco

Repower has scored a second supply contract with Germany’s Renerco to supply turbines for Renerco’s 16.4MW Cotton Farm wind farm in Cambridgeshire, UK.

Dong Energy gets green light to test next generation turbines in UK

Dong Energy is to test two next generation offshore wind turbines at its Gunfleet Sands site off the eastern coast of England, following consent from the UK authorities to install the turbines.

Mitsui takes 25% stake in Global Energy Group

Japanese conglomerate Mitsui has bought a stake in Global Energy Group, the owners of the Nigg, a key renewables hub under development on the Scottish coast.

GE’s 1.6MW wind turbine to debut in Turkey

GE is to supply 31 of its 1.6-100 wind turbines to a wind project in Turkey, the first of the series to be installed in Europe.

FirstSolar closes European solar manufacturing base

US solar panel manufacturer FirstSolar is cutting its production output and laying off nearly a third of its workforce in an effort to cut costs that will see it close its European manufacturing base.

Enel to build CSP and biomass bi-generation plant

Italian power company Enel has signed a memorandum of understanding with Enea, Italy’s agency for new technologies, and Rome’s local authority Roma Capitale, to build and test a concentrated solar and biomass bi-generation plant.

EDF to enter Moroccan wind market with plans for 150MW project

A consortium headed up by EDF is planning to develop a 150MW wind farm in northern Morocco, the first venture into Morocco by the French energy giant.

Sinovel and Mita Teknik join forces on turbine control systems

Chinese turbine manufacturer Sinovel and Denmark’s Mita-Teknik are to work together to develop customised wind turbine control systems.

Vestas “confident” of finding cause of turbine fire

Danish turbine manufacturer Vestas has said it is “confident” it is closer to finding out the root cause of a fire in one of its turbines last month.

Italy cuts FiTs in an effort to “balance” renewables growth

Italian officials have revealed details of draft proposals for Italy’s latest renewable energy law, the fifth Conto Energia, which will see support reduced and regulation increased for the country’s renewable energy sector.

Gamesa unveils 2MW wind turbine for low wind speeds

Spanish wind turbine manufacturer Gamesa is to launch a new 2MW turbine, which it says is ideally suited for developments on sites with low wind speeds.

US to invest US$30 million in energy storage R&D

The United States’ government has launched a US$30 million research competition to push forward the development of energy storage technology, in an effort to meet future demand from both the domestic energy market and the military.

Reliance and Areva to build 250MW CSP capacity in India

French multinational Areva and Indian energy group Reliance are to build a 250MW concentrated solar power (CSP) project in India, a scheme which the two companies say will be “the largest in Asia”.

UK ministers eye Iceland’s volcano-powered electricity

Electricity generated from Iceland’s huge resource of volcanic geothermal energy could be imported into the UK, helping it reach its renewable energy targets, ministers said yesterday.

US DoE reveals US$9 million fund for energy sector innovation

The United States Department of Energy (DoE) is to make up to $9 million available in 2012 to fund approximately 50 small businesses to advance innovative energy efficiency and renewable energy.

Nordex scores first Chinese order for multi-MW range

German wind turbine manufacturer Nordex has scored an order for its 2.5MW N90/2500 turbine from China, the first since the launch of a marketing campaign for the multi-MW series in the Far East.

France awards first round of offshore wind tenders

The French Government has kicked off France’s offshore wind programme, by awarding the first tenders for offshore wind projects in the country.

Hydropower Sustainability Protocol training kicks off in Brazil

The International Hydropower Association (IHA) has led training for a number of South American firms on the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Protocol, to help them assess the sustainability of their projects.

Gamesa scoops wind innovation award for second time

Spanish wind turbine manufacturer Gamesa has won the JEC Innovation award for wind energy for the second year running, this time for one of its modular blades, the Innoblade.

Japanese firms agree to build 70MW solar project

Three Japanese companies are to collaborate to build a 70MW solar plant in southern Japan in an effort to help solve the country’s energy supply problems.

All Energy 2012 preview: new features revealed

Seven weeks ahead of doors opening in Aberdeen, All-Energy 2012, one of the UK’s largest renewables exhibitions, has revealed three new “zones” that will be featured in the show.

France to showcase “innovative and powerful” wind sector at EWEA 2012

The French wind industry is to showcase itself at the forthcoming EWEA exhibition in Denmark in the coming weeks.

UK wind industry commits to boosting “national prosperity”

Eleven major wind energy companies have signed a “Wind Charter” promising to use wind power to boost national prosperity in the UK.

Viking gets green light for 370MW Shetland wind farm

Scottish ministers have approved Viking Energy’s 370MW wind farm in the Shetland islands, after the developer agreed to reduce the number of turbines from 127 to 103.

“Optimistic” Neon Energy secures solar inverters for Greek market

Greek solar contractor Neon Energy has signed an exclusive supply deal with Germany’s Kaco New Energy for 50MW solar inverters, as the Athens-based company revealed its confidence in the Greek solar power market.

Study: PV installations will defy “doom and gloom” and grow in 2012

Installations of solar PV will grow by at least 3.5% in 2012, despite many governments slashing financial incentives for the technology, a study has revealed.

Atlantic Power increases stake in Canadian Hills wind farm to 99%

Atlantic Power, the Boston-based power generator, has bought an additional 48% stake in its planned 300MW Canadian Hills wind project in Oklahoma, taking its total interest in the project to 99%.

World’s leading economies to push for action on clean energy

Energy ministers from 23 of the world's leading economies will meet in London from 25-27 April, to work together on accelerating the transition to clean energy technologies ahead of a major sustainable development conference this summer.

GE to supply turbines to “hot” Ontario wind market

Turbine manufacturer GE is to supply turbines to 9 new wind power projects in the Canadian province of Ontario.

Air Liquide to provide hydrogen station for Alabama fuel cell bus demonstration

In the US, the Center for Transportation and the Environment (CTE) has announced that Air Liquide Industrial US LP is under contract to build and operate a hydrogen fuelling station for the fuel cell bus demonstration in Birmingham, Alabama.

Tocardo eyes “promising” South Korean hydropower market

Dutch hydropower turbine manufacturer Tocardo has signed a dealership agreement to sell its technology into South Korea, in an effort to tap the country’s marine and river power potential.

Study: New England offshore wind farm will slash regional electricity bills

A planned offshore wind farm off the coast of Massachusetts could cut US$286 million a year from New England electricity bills, a study has revealed.

Germany’s Q-Cells to file for bankruptcy

Solar panel manufacturer Q-Cells has become the latest German solar panel manufacturer to fail, after spiralling debts and a slump in prices forced the company to file for insolvency proceedings.