Innovative solar technologies are growing by leaps and bounds across the world, and EnergySage is here to tell you all about it. Read on to learn more about the top solar energy news for the week of October 26th, 2015.
Morocco: The Next Solar Superpower
Morocco is hard at work constructing the world’s largest concentrated solar power (CSP) plant to capture the power of the Saharan sun. The plan: to capture the energy potential of Morocco’s expansive dry desert and provide half of the nation’s energy needs by 2020 with solar while simultaneously reducing reliance on imported oil. The first phase of installation for the plant will contain 500,000 panels organized into 800 rows. Moroccan officials are confident that this landmark installation will reposition the country as a global solar superpower.
Breaking Ground on Europe’s Largest Floating Solar Plant
Project developers announced this week that construction has begun on the largest floating solar plant in Europe. The 12,000-panel plant, which is being constructed by the UK’s largest water company, will be located on the Godley Reservoir in Greater Manchester. The innovative system will be comprised of 12,000 panels and span a total of 45,500 square meters. Floating solar technology is new to most areas of the world, though certain countries like Japan are at the cutting edge.
Solar-Powered Railways: A New Green Transit Solution
A new report this week highlighted the major opportunity that high-efficiency electric trains presents for solar innovation. Electric trains pollute 50 to 75 percent less than the typical automobile, in terms of energy use per passenger per mile, and municipalities around the world are investing their public transit funds in electric train systems. By incorporating solar power, these rail systems can take emissions reductions and sustainable energy development to new heights.
Researchers Announce Technology Capable of Doubling Solar Panel Efficiency
Researchers at the University of Connecticut announced this week that they have developed a gel that enhances a solar cell’s capacity to absorb energy from sunlight. The innovative process, termed an “artificial photosynthesis,” could double the efficiency of solar panels and lower installation costs for consumers. The lead researcher is currently working with Connecticut solar technologists to test the gel on long-term panel installations.
Your Weekend Solar Reading
- The campaign for the presidency is ramping up, and as we get closer to Election Day, it’s important to consider how all of the candidates measure up on climate and energy issues. The Earth Institute at Columbia University ranked all 15 Republican and 4 Democratic candidates for the presidency on their positions. The takeaway: whoever ends up in the White House will have a major impact on the solar industry. Currently, every single Republican candidate would plan to eliminate renewable energy tax credits like the ITC, whereas most Democrats would likely extend it – including Governor Martin O’Malley, who affirmed his support during the first Democratic debate.