January’s top news stories

6 February 2018 (Last Updated February 6th, 2018 08:53)

Turkey launched $11bn energy efficiency plan, and Fotowatio to set up 540GWh hybrid solar-wind project in Chile. Power-technology.com wraps up key headlines from January.

Turkey launched $11bn energy efficiency plan

The Government of Turkey planned to invest $11bn to reduce primary energy consumption by 14% as part of its National Energy Efficiency Action Plan (NEEAP).

The plan’s energy efficiency measures included a combination of general energy efficiency frameworks and cross-cutting sectorial measures, as well as greater use of renewable energy and district heating in buildings and encouraging the use of combined heat.

Across all Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries, Turkey has the highest growth rate of energy demand, as per government figures.


Fotowatio to set up 540GWh hybrid solar-wind project in Chile

Abdul Latif Jameel Energy’s subsidiary Fotowatio Renewable Ventures (FRV) secured a 540GWh hybrid project in Chile that will deliver renewable energy using a combination of solar photovoltaic (PV) and wind energy technologies.

The project is Abdul Latif Jameel Energy’s first hybrid project and is expected to supply power to around 223,973 households annually.

Located between Central and Northern Chile, the project is estimated to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by around 221,400t of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year once in operation.


Organic solar cells received semiconductor breakthrough

Organic solar cells are a step closer to widespread use thanks to a breakthrough in semiconductors by researchers at the University of Michigan.

A study published in Nature explains how it is possible to make electrons travel much further in organic solar cells than previously thought possible, improving their efficiency and opening up an array of potential applications.

Successful large-scale implementation of solar energy depends on efficiency, life expectancy and cost. Organic solar cell materials made from carbon-based materials such as plastic are much cheaper than their inorganic, silicon-based counterparts.


Construction began for UK’s 1.2GW Hornsea Project One windfarm

Danish power company Ørsted began construction work at its Hornsea Project One windfarm in England, UK.

The windpower project is expected to become one of the biggest offshore windfarmsw in the world once completed.

It will be equipped with 174 wind turbines and feature a power generation capacity of 1.2GW.


EU to invest €680m in European electricity projects

The EU’s European Commission (EC) has revealed plans to invest €680m in various electricity projects across Europe as part of an effort to move the continent to a clean energy-driven economy.

The initiative aims to adapt European infrastructure to meet future energy needs and is anticipated to deliver cheaper and more secure energy to consumers.

Funding for the eight projects will be arranged by the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF), which is the designated support programme for trans-European infrastructure.


Canadian Solar and Photon Energy to build Australia solar projects

Photovoltaic (PV) manufacturer Canadian Solar and Photon Energy entered an agreement to jointly build five solarpower projects in Australia.

To be constructed in New South Wales (NSW), the five utility-scale power plants will have a total capacity of 1.14GWp.

Canadian Solar chairman and chief executive officer Dr Shawn Qu said: “Canadian Solar is delighted to partner with Photon Energy and bring 1.14GWp into the Australian market.”


Scotland commissioned study to evaluate potential of floating wind projects

Crown Estate Scotland launched a new study to assess the potential economic benefits of adding more floating wind projects.

To be overseen by a UK-wide group, including Crown Estate Scotland, The Crown Estate, RenewableUK, Scottish Renewables and the Offshore Wind Industry Council, the £50,000 project will look in detail at different scenarios based on different scales of development and potential in Scotland.

Conducted by Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult on behalf of Crown Estate Scotland, the assessment is expected to enable the UK Government to frame policies to support the growth of offshore wind industry.


Saitec and Univergy formed alliance to develop floating wind projects in Japan

Spain-based engineering services firm Saitec Offshore Technologies formed an alliance with Univergy to develop floating offshore wind projects in Japan.

Under the partnership, the companies intend to create a special purpose company (SPA) that will utilise Saitec’s offshore floating platform concept Swinging Around Twin Hull (SATH) technology.

Univergy executive president Ignacio Blanco said: “This agreement that unites Saitec and Univergy has a high strategic value for the development of projects of offshore plants, both by the experience of both companies in this sector of the economy, as well as by floating technology STAH.”


Australia’s UNSW reached agreement for photovoltaic solar energy

The University of New South Wales (UNSW) has signed an agreement with Maoneng Australia and Origin Energy to purchase photovoltaic (PV) solarpower for 15 years.

The tripartite deal includes an off-site solar PV corporate power purchase agreement (solar PPA).

Under the contract, UNSW will buy up to 124,000MWh of renewable energy per annum from Maoneng’s Sunraysia solar farm near Balranald in south-western NSW.


New cable project secured UK grant to cut power loss during transmission

A new project supported by Eland Cables secured a £1m Innovate UK grant.

The project aims to use Enertechnos’ new capacitive transfer system (CTS) technology to cut costs and reduce carbon emissions in the UK’s transmission, distribution and renewable generation sectors.

The long linear capacitor cable technology is designed to reduce power loss for economic and environmental benefits.