Solmetric now shipping its new PVA-1500 V2 IV curve tracer

solmetric curve tracer

Solmetric has begun shipping its new PVA-1500 V2 IV curve tracer for commissioning, maintaining, and troubleshooting PV systems. This latest model of the popular 1500Volt/30Amp PV Analyzer product line adds some key new features, including:

• Charging/charged LED indicators on the I-V unit and SolSensor
• In-the-field firmware upgrade capability so that your unit won’t need to come back to factory for future firmware feature enhancements and patches
• Ability to pair/re-pair SolSensor to I-V unit in the field
• Enhanced protection against inadvertent I-V sweeps while string is connected to an inverter

And, of course, it still includes all the other PVA-1500 features that have made the earlier model so popular, including:

• Measures strings up to 1500 Volts at 30 Amps
• WiFi connectivity
• Highest accuracy
• Highest measurement throughput
• Largest display with best array troubleshooting features
• 300 ft wireless sensor range

— Solar Builder magazine

Empire Statement: New York mandates 100 percent renewable energy by 2040

new york climate leadership

New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo is ushering in a new energy era for the Empire State by signing the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act into law, which will require the state’s utilities to produce 70 percent of their electricity from renewable sources by 2030 and calls for 100 percent carbon-free electricity generation by 2040.

In addition, Cuomo is calling for the country’s largest offshore wind procurement — nearly 1.7 GW — with the selection of two offshore wind projects, that will create enough energy to power over 1 million homes, create more than 1,600 jobs, and result in $3.2 billion in economic activity.

In total, the CLCPA codifies commitments to install 9 GW of offshore wind by 2035; 6 GW of distributed solar by 2025; and 3 GW of energy storage by 2030.

“Cries for a new green movement are hollow political rhetoric if not combined with aggressive goals and a realistic plan on how to achieve them,” Cuomo stated. “With this agreement, New York will lead the way in developing the largest source of offshore wind power in the nation, and today I will sign the most aggressive climate law in the United States of America.”

Highlights of Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act

  • The CLCPA requires the State to achieve a carbon free electricity system by 2040 and reduce greenhouse gas emissions 85% below 1990 levels by 2050.
  • New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) will, through the adoption of regulations, drive an 85% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, with an interim mandate of 40% reduction in emissions by 2030 (both relative to 1990 levels). The Climate Action Council will develop a plan to offset remaining emissions through carbon capture or other technologies, resulting in a carbon-neutral economy.
  • The CLCPA mandates that at least 70% of New York’s electricity come from renewable energy sources such as wind and solar by 2030, and that the state’s power system is 100% carbon neutral by 2040.
  • The CLCPA codifies commitments to install 9 GW of offshore wind by 2035; 6 GW of distributed solar by 2025; and 3 GW of energy storage by 2030.
  • Importantly, implementation of the CLCPA will target investments to benefit disadvantaged communities. Relevant state agencies will invest 35% of clean energy program resources to benefit disadvantaged communities, and will aim to invest 40%.
  • Heads of relevant state agencies and legislative appointees will craft the roadmap of policies needed to achieve the law’s mandates. The Council, co-chaired by the New York State Energy Research and Development Agency (NYSERDA) and DEC will establish sector specific working groups to make sure experts and stakeholders inform all policies developed under the CLCPA. Planned working groups include a just transition working group, as well as working groups on transportation, agriculture, energy-intensive and trade-exposed industries, land use and energy efficiency.

— Solar Builder magazine

KeyBank partners with Dividend Finance on new residential solar financing program


KeyBank (PRNewsFoto/KeyCorp)

KeyBank, N.A. and Dividend Finance are partnering on a new financial program to help homeowners add solar and energy storage systems to their homes to gain energy independence. These services will be offered in 35 states across the nation.

“Dividend’s ability to provide KeyBank access to new households while optimizing our funding strategy creates great alignment. This landmark partnership is a testament to our platform’s bankability and furthers our mission of promoting the adoption of renewable technologies,” said Eric White, Dividend’s Chief Executive Officer.

Dividend is a national provider of solar and home improvement financing solutions, and KeyBank, headquartered in Cleveland, has a renewable energy portfolio investment of more than $3.3 billion, mostly focused in the commercial space. This partnership with Dividend will now allow KeyBank to expand its focus to homeowners who want to invest in solar energy and create potential long-term savings by turning utilities into long-term predictable expenses – helping them to take control of their financial wellness.

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, electric energy prices have increased by almost 15% over the past 10 years and are forecasted to continue to increase going forward.

“Empowering homeowners to invest in this growing solar technology – and helping to make it affordable for them to do so – will help our clients take control of rising utility costs and their financial future,” said Chris Manderfield, Director, Head of Product Management for Consumer Segment for KeyBank.


— Solar Builder magazine

Solar Operations Solutions discusses utility-scale solar innovation, like this new XMFR-Sync Controller

Solar Operations Solutions facility

Montgomery Solar in Biscoe, NC is a 20MW facility built by O2 emc in 2015 and is running on the MyPV MCI (monitor/control/integrate) family of products by Solar Operations Solutions LLC.

According to Wood Mackenzie’s Solar Market Insight Report (Q2 2019), there were 1.6 gigawatts of utility-scale solar installed in Q1 2019, accounting for 61 percent of U.S. capacity additions this quarter. According to Brad Micallef, managing director and co-founder of Solar Operations Solutions LLC, this output is equivalent to almost two nuclear power facilities being built in 3 months. “We manage more than 100 MW across twenty large scale solar farms in North Carolina; this new growth has kept our firm very busy developing innovative services and products.”

Since 2017, when Duke Energy first imposed new interconnection audit and technical requirements, Solar-Ops has been helping local developers such as O2 emc LLC succeed in bringing new solar farms online; on-time and within budget. Micallef says, solving O2 emc’s transformer in-rush current requirement resulted in a product invention that will help speed-up new solar projects interconnection with utilities.

“Using the standard equipment available, there was not an economic or timely manner to solve the problem, so we invented what is now known at the XFMR-Sync Controller,” said Micallef. “Our industry is really just getting started – it’s very collaborative and ripe for innovation.”

Leveraging their massive fleet of fully functional solar farms to prototype, iterate, and perfect products that close gaps is integral to Solar-Ops’ mission. “It’s a very rare opportunity, to be managing more than 100MW across twenty large scale solar farms, with a wide variety of equipment to ensure products are truly utility grade, says Micallef. “Most companies who are project driven, don’t have access to equipment or the time to perfect solutions.”

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Solar Operations is launching their new XMFR-Sync Controller, designed and tested to mitigate in-rush current through a standard product offering that’s proven to pass the utility’s audit process and requirements. It’s been successfully used on solar farms throughout North Carolina, where they’re also currently preparing a solution to solve another interconnection requirement; rapid voltage change (RVC).

“The XFMR-Sync Controller is the first of several products we’re releasing to solve these new interconnection hurdles. The utility’s system study and following advanced study process take time, and are performed late in the project development stage, many solar developers are not even aware their project may have a problem to solve until after equipment is ordered,” says Micallef. “By proving out these solutions early with our partners, other developers can be reassured we’ll have solutions ready to help their solar projects succeed.”

— Solar Builder magazine

NREL confirms 20.56 percent solar cell efficiency for a flexible thin-film product from MiaSolé


MiaSolé, the leading manufacturer of lightweight, flexible, thin-film photovoltaic solar panels announced that the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory has independently confirmed a 20.56 percent cell efficiency for a thin-film device (0.86cm2) deposited on a stainless steel foil. This is a new internal record for MiaSolé that shows their dedication to continuously advance copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) thin-film solar technology.

The films deposited for this cell were produced directly from the MiaSolé Roll Coater production line in Santa Clara, CA using an advanced process that incorporates multiple breakthroughs for delivering select alkali elements as well as precise compositional control of the Ag-alloyed CIGS absorber. The processes that enabled this high-efficiency device are directly transferable to high volume manufacturing.

“Our innovative continuous deposition system enables us to rewrite the process development playbook. By experimenting at the manufacturing scale, we can bring high-efficiency thin-film solar cells into production at a faster rate,” said Dr. Neil Mackie Senior Director of Process Development at MiaSolé. “Seamless integration of manufacturing methods into advanced process development is already enabling the next generation of high efficiency and high-reliability thin-film solar products from MiaSolé.”

MiaSolé’s proprietary technology enables high throughput manufacturing with high-performance cells to create lightweight, flexible solar modules for unlimited applications in the building, transportation, and portable solar markets.

— Solar Builder magazine