Market Research and Insight

A new breakthrough could bring us a bit closer to a future in which building and car windows could generate electricity from the sun without interfering with the view. Researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles, have developed a solar cell made from plastic that’s 70 percent transparent... Read more
Which countries are getting the most energy from solar panels? Germany continues to lead the way globally, with nearly 25 gigawatts (GW) of installed solar-energy capacity at the end of 2011. Starting 2011 with a solar base of 17.4 GW — which was already 43.5 percent of the entire... Read more
Think Warren Buffett knows a thing or two about smart investing? Then it’s worth noting that the “Oracle of Omaha” is bullish on solar energy. MidAmerican Energy, a holding company of Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, plans to buy First Solar’s $2-billion-plus Topaz solar photovoltaic development, currently being built in San... Read more
Utilities today are increasingly finding themselves in a chicken-and-egg situation. Which comes first: a smarter grid, or a greener grid? While the two, in theory, go hand in hand — more intermittent renewables increase the need for smarter, automated management, while a smarter grid inherently means more green energy... Read more
Construction of a new 66 megawatt (MW) solar power project in California is set to start before the end of the year, with completion expected by the fall of 2012. NRG Energy plans to develop the Alpine project with the help of First Solar. Electricity generated by the plant will... Read more
What types of big batteries or other energy storage systems will work best with renewable energy and the existing grid to ensure reliable power supplies in the future? A two-year research project under way in Arizona is seeking the answer to that question. The Energy Storage Management Research and... Read more
Ever-cheaper solar panels are proving to be a good news, bad news proposition. While they seem great for efficiency-minded homeowners, businesses and schools, low-cost photovoltaics (PV) haven’t been kind lately to the US solar industry. The problem, according to a group of US-based companies that make solar cells and... Read more
A new solar farm able to generate enough energy for 12,000 households has just come online in the south of France. The Les Mées solar farm in the department of Alpes-de- Haute-Provence features six Siemens photovoltaic (PV) power plants with a combined peak output of 31 megawatts. The project developer... Read more
Several hundred new green jobs are on their way to Aurora, Colorado, courtesy of GE’s plan to build the largest US-based solar-panel factory yet there. Expected to begin production in 2012, the plant will be set up in an existing building close to a GE solar research center that... Read more
More than 150,000 multicrystalline solar panels from Suntech Power Holdings are now generating energy at two new solar power plants in central California. The 15-megawatt (MW) plant in Five Points and the 20-MW facility in Helm were both built and engineered by Cupertino Electric Inc.’s Energy Alternatives Division. Construction... Read more