Hanergy Thin Film Power Group signed a strategic cooperation agreement with Beijing Electric Vehicle at the “Green China – Hanergy Ecological City Comprehensive Solution Plan Conference” held at the Hanergy general headquarters. Working together within the framework of “Smart Transportation, Green Journey,” the two companies pledged to drive forward thin film applications for the car & household, including roofs and charging stations as well as projects to construct distributed energy industrial parks, and to use solar technology to alleviate poverty in agricultural areas.
As part of the agreement, BAIC BJEV will work with Hanergy to integrate Hanergy’s thin film solar solutions into the roofs of vehicles, providing auxiliary power and even functioning as the main power source. BAIC BJEV and Hanergy will also work together to use thin film solar technology to provide smart battery charging at electric vehicle charging stations. In terms of shared electric vehicles, the two companies will collaborate on using thin film solar to power automotive GPS and electronic locks.
Furthermore, BAIC BJEV and Hanergy plan to deploy thin film solar technology in BAIC BJEV’s automobile manufacturing plants, constructing a distributed green energy system to support factory operations. Finally, the two companies will begin to build small model villages incorporating the aforementioned technology, including thin film solar roofs, car charging stations and new energy vehicles. As part of this initiative the companies will also explore application of thin film solar for agriculture and poverty alleviation.
Lux Research: Thin-film solar modules could challenge silicon in the coming years
At the signing ceremony, Hanergy CEO Si Haijian said, “Hanergy’s partnership with BAIC BJEV stands as a model for cooperation between the thin film solar and the new energy vehicle industries, reflecting the push within Chinese industry to transform energy production and consumption.”
Aside from BAIC BJEV, the Green China Conference was attended by Haier, Zhong Yuan and other Chinese giants of industry. The conference was devoted to discussion of Hanergy’s Ecological City Comprehensive Solution, an effort under China’s new energy development strategy to lower urban energy consumption. This will be accomplished through reforms in macro level planning, program design, infrastructure construction and transportation services aimed at improving urban energy use. China’s efforts in this area follow similar programs undertaken in France, the Netherlands, Germany and other European countries. Similar to these countries, China has prioritized its plan to phase out gasoline powered cars.
— Solar Builder magazine
Chinese PV manufacturer Hanergy has been in the news lately for the wrong reasons, such as a dropping stock and recently canceled $585 million order (see this Financial Times article for many of the details). GlobalData analyst Amit Sharma says that these problems are largely because of an “overly optimistic approach regarding its thin-film modules.”
“China’s solar PV industry has been severely affected by huge production capacity additions since 2010, and the subsequent overcapacity has had a much bigger impact on the thin-film industry than on the crystalline silicon (c-Si) industry,” he says. “Thin-film contributes around 10% of the solar PV installation in China as of 2015 and the technology, in comparison to C-Si, has not achieved its economies of scale. However, Hanergy has been aggressively promoting and increasing its manufacturing capacity for thin-film, based on optimism for the technology, rather than aligning it to upcoming project pipelines. While c-Si manufacturers, such as Yingli Green Energy and Trinity Solar, have the flexibility to outsource production and meet demand when required, thin-film manufacturers lack this ability.
Despite the problems and whatever the reason may be, Sharma says Hanergy’s share price downfall is not expected to make a difference to the fast and steadily growing solar PV industry in China and the rest of the world.
“China’s solar industry is set to expand rapidly due to the government’s renewable plans and encouraging initiatives,” he says. “Presently, the country offers a feed-in tariff for both utility-scale and distributed generation installations. The National Energy Administration has increased the solar power installation goal by 20% and is aggressively working to increase solar capacity beyond 100 GW by 2020, a more than threefold increase from 30 GW in 2014.
“However, recent events raise questions over the future market shares of thin-film and c-Si. The solar PV industry still has no definite roadmap to follow, which means the market will be shaped by whatever route its leaders decide to take. As a result, it is perhaps more important for players to have project pipelines, whether in-house or third party, to produce against. Companies must hit customer-required metrics on cost, price, and efficiency, as well as have a business model that makes long-term sense.”
— Solar Builder magazine
Miasole, a company of Hanergy introduces their new FLEX 01-W PV (210-watts) module for TPO roof systems. The Miasole FLEX W module is the roofing industry’s first flexible large format solar module for low slope commercial roofing. The FLEX module’s high performance self-adhesive provides a roofer friendly simple peel-n-stick installation system with the industry’s first 25-year adhesion guarantee.
The Miasole FLEX module bonded to the TPO roof systems eliminates the need for racking, concrete ballast or roof penetrations. The FLEX W low profile PV module has the same wind uplift rating of the roof system design, making FLEX the best solar choice for high wind zones. Weighting less than 0.7 lb/sq ft, FLEX is idea for roofs with low load capacity and buildings in high seismic areas.
MiaSole is a producer of thin-film Copper Indium Gallium Selenide (CIGS) solar cells and panels. Founded in 2004, MiaSolé has evolved from a Silicon Valley start-up to the world leader in thin film solar panel efficiency. In its Sunnyvale, Calif. facility, MiaSole has demonstrated 15.5 percent module efficiency in production. Miasole became part of the Hanergy family of renewable energy technology companies in 2012.
— Solar Builder magazine