Panasonic releases three new modules to HIT lineup (all-black look)

Panasonic Eco Solutions North America introduced three new photovoltaic module HIT: the N320K, N315K and N310K. These new models are able to produce 320, 315, and 310 watts of power, respectively, and are a continuation of Panasonic’s line of high-efficiency residential solar panels. Boasting module efficiency of 19.1% with a sleek all-black appearance, the panels are a perfect fit for most any residential setting.

panasonic modules

The new black panels are backed by Panasonic’s track record as an industry leader in reliability within the renewable energy field. Designed to offer optimal efficiency and stylish aesthetics, the HIT N320K, N315K and N310K photovoltaic modules will blend in seamlessly with most rooftops and begin cutting electricity bills for customers from the moment that they’re installed and start to operate.

“Panasonic has been innovating and reimagining the amorphous silicon cell since we pioneered the technology over forty years ago,” said Dan Silver, President, Panasonic Eco Solutions North America. “This addition to our industry-leading line of solar panels is the latest improvement in our array of renewable energy products. The new black panels combine the engineering expertise and high efficiency Panasonic is known for with an attractive but inconspicuous design that will yield huge savings for consumers.”

RELATED: Why high-efficiency modules are the best value for installers, homeowners 

The N320K produces 23 percent more power for consumers than traditional panels, and feature the highest level of efficiency among other black panels available in the market today. These new all-black solar panels are designed to maintain optimal performance even in high temperatures and vastly increase savings for the consumer.

Panasonic’s trademark amorphous silicon layers and pyramid cell structure allow for the panel to absorb light at multiple angles so that the panel is maximizing generation at all times of the day. The unique water drainage frame quickly removes water from the panel and prevents the buildup of any serious precipitation.

Panasonic’s robust manufacturing process also provides installers and consumers additional value through an extended product warranty of 15 years. Panasonic’s test criteria are among the highest in the in the industry, ensuring long-term safe operation over many years.

— Solar Builder magazine

Panasonic bumps product guarantee for HIT series solar modules to 25 years

panasonic

Panasonic, a global manufacturer of high-efficiency solar modules, will deliver significantly greater quality assurance to customers with a new 25-year product guarantee for its solar module HIT series.

The news represents a 10-year upgrade on Panasonic’s previous product guarantee of 15 years and applies to all HIT modules installed from 2017. As part of the guarantee extension, Panasonic is introducing an online customer signup procedure, allowing Panasonic to provide customers with a personalized guarantee certificate for their specific installation and solar system characteristics.

“Today’s 25-year product guarantee announcement delivers on our commitment to manufacture and supply solar modules of the highest reliability and quality for our growing European customer base,” stated Daniel Roca, Senior Business Developer at Panasonic. “Since introducing HIT in 1997, the product has forged a reputation of excellent reliability and quality manufacturing standards. This guarantee extension consolidates this reputation, providing European installers and consumers with full confidence and peace of mind when installing our high performance modules in their solar systems.”

RELATED: Why high-efficiency modules are the best value for installers, homeowners 

The extension comes during a milestone year for Panasonic who are celebrating 20 years manufacturing solar module HIT. Since launching the high performance solar module series, the company has supplied over 1 billion cells worldwide and 18 million modules, providing consumers, businesses and institutions with clean, reliable solar energy.

— Solar Builder magazine

Panasonic, Younicos working on solar+storage project in Denver

Energy storage company Younicos has signed an agreement with strategic partner Panasonic to design and build a solar-plus-storage system at Peña Station NEXT in Denver, Colo., which includes the operations hub for Panasonic Enterprise Solutions Company and Panasonic CityNOW. The system will make use of multiple Younicos Y.Cubes, the innovative “storage-in-a-box” solution for C&I applications from the German-American industry pioneer.

The project calls for four Y.Cubes to be installed at the Panasonic facility in Denver, Colorado. The one-megawatt (MW) storage resource, which will be connected to the Xcel Energy power grid, will provide frequency regulation, solar grid integration through ramp control, grid peak shaving, energy arbitrage, and backup power – enabled by Younicos’s intelligent Y.Q storage control software. This multi-mode operating capability will enable Panasonic, Xcel Energy, and other microgrid stakeholders to derive maximum benefits from Xcel Energy’s 1.6 MW solar PV system sited on a parking structure nearby, along with 259 kW of PV on the building’s rooftop.

younicos solar storage

RELATED: GlobalData: Battery energy storage system installs to hit 14 GW by 2020 

“The solar-plus-storage microgrid is an anchor, not just of Panasonic’s new Denver operations hub, but also for the broader Peña Station NEXT development, which is a 400-acre, smart and sustainable transit-oriented development in Denver,” said Jamie Evans, managing director of the Energy Solutions Group at Panasonic Enterprise Solutions Company. “We are excited to partner with Younicos and Xcel Energy to bring this innovative project to life.”

“We’re very pleased to work with Panasonic on this project, which highlights the advantages of our plug-and-play Y.Cube system for commercial and industrial use cases,” said Stephen Prince, Younicos CEO. “Like Younicos, Panasonic is a technology leader with a strong focus on the benefits of solar-plus-storage for different applications. They and the local grid will benefit enormously from this resource.”

The Y.Cube consists of two sub-enclosures, one each for the power conversion system and DC battery block. The controls are embedded in the PCS and communicate directly with the battery system, bypassing the need for additional battery-to-PCS communication interfaces. Its optimized configuration translates to ultra-fast response time for improved PCS efficiency and enhanced grid-forming capability.

The Y.Cube is available in 250 or 500 kVA modular building blocks that can be deployed individually in smaller applications or combined to create multi-megawatt systems. Its compact size allows for easy installation. No on-site crane is needed; installation can be done with a forklift, saving considerable time and money.

— Solar Builder magazine

Panasonic might produce PV modules for SolarCity at new plant

PanasonicPanasonic Corp. is making bigger and bigger moves in the solar industry. The company already had a relationship with Tesla Motors as a battery partner, but will now is in discussions to manufacture its PV cells and modules at the big new SolarCity facility planned for Buffalo, N.Y., pending the Tesla/SolarCity merger becoming official, of course. Panasonic is already pushing out a nice solar installer training program with its own branded high efficiency modules, and working with SolarCity could obviously really ramp up its penetration in the U.S.

Details from Panasonic: On Oct. 17, 2016, Panasonic has signed a non-binding letter of intent with Tesla to discuss about possible collaboration on the production of PV cells and modules for the North American market at a factory in Buffalo, New York, under the umbrella of Tesla.

Panasonic will look at a collaboration that utilizes the strengths of both companies, creating a synergy between Panasonic’s technological and manufacturing expertise in PV cells and modules and Tesla’s strong sales capacity.
Panasonic produces and sells its HIT PV modules with unique silicon heterojunction structure composed of crystalline silicon substrate and amorphous silicon layers. With industry-leading conversion efficiency and excellent temperature coefficient characteristics, Panasonic’s HIT achieves high power generation even in a limited space.

Panasonic is one of the few vertically integrated PV manufacturers in the world, with in-house production of ingots, cells and modules to inverters, providing high-quality products.

This Buffalo plant is being built with assistance from New York, and is going to be the largest producer of photovoltaic panels in North America. SolarCity delayed the opening of this plant when questions started to pop up about its future. The speculation now is this deal with Panasonic could be the extra financial boost the company needs to get this going. From Forbes:

SolarCity, under pressure to secure additional funds prior, earlier this year delayed the opening of the Buffalo plant, pushing it back to about the second quarter of 2017, according to the Buffalo News. That’s raised concerns among both New York state officials and investors about the fate of the facility.

“Panasonic’s support could mitigate, in our view, some of the capex required to launch the Buffalo facility,” Brian Johnson, an equity analyst for Barclays who has an “underweight” rating on Tesla shares, said in a research note today.

— Solar Builder magazine

Panasonic invests in sustainable, mixed-use community in Denver

Panasonic continues its march into U.S. renewables, making a strategic investment in Rail Stop LLC, the development company creating the first phase of Peña Station NEXT in Denver. Peña Station NEXT is a 400-acre, transit-oriented development destined to become America’s next great smart, sustainable mixed-use community. It is located near 61st & Peña Station along the new University of Colorado A Line train route connecting downtown Denver withDenver International Airport (DIA). The Rail Stop land comprises 154 acres of Peña Station NEXT and includes the newly constructed and recently opened operations hub of Panasonic Enterprise Solutions Company. The Panasonic investment is a joint venture with LC Fulenwider, Inc., the master developer of Peña Station NEXT.

PanasonicIn December 2014, Panasonic announced it would consolidate the operations of Panasonic Enterprise Solutions Company in Denver, including operations for Panasonic CityNOW, which brings Panasonic’s global smart city expertise to North America. The announcement launched a uniquely strong collaboration among the City and County of Denver, DIA, LC Fulenwider, Xcel Energy, Panasonic, and other major stakeholders. The epicenter for that collaboration has become Peña Station NEXT, a global smart city showcase inspired by Fujisawa Sustainable Smart Town, a Panasonic-led smart and sustainable development in Fujisawa, Japan, about 30 miles southwest of Tokyo.

The smart city solutions being deployed at Peña Station NEXT will include an innovative solar-plus-storage microgrid, smart LED street lights with video analytics and other features for community safety and parking, community Wi-Fi, electric vehicle charging stations, and autonomous electric shuttles to create a seamless mobility experience throughout the transit-oriented development to and from the rail station.

“Panasonic is much more than the anchor corporate tenant at Peña Station NEXT,” said Jarrett Wendt, Executive Vice President of strategic initiatives at Panasonic Enterprise Solutions Company. “This is our home, and this strategic investment is a testament to our commitment to make that home one of the smartest and most sustainable new developments in the country. In partnership with LC Fulenwider, the progressive City and County of Denver, Denver International Airport, and our other key partners, we expect to put Peña Station NEXT on the national and global map.”

Panasonic’s investment comes at a time when the City and County of Denver and Denver International Airport have embarked on a bold vision to create a “Colorado Aerotropolis.” DIA is the 6th busiest airport in the United States and recently ranked the #2 best airport in North America in the 2016 Skytrax World Airport Awards. The Aerotropolis initiative is expected to make DIA and the surrounding area a world-class “live, work, play” destination and Peña Station NEXT will be a cornerstone of that effort.

“Having Panasonic as an equity partner in Rail Stop is a game changer. It ensures that we will be the true North American showpiece for the next generation of smart and sustainable technologies, which will be incorporated into the fabric of our transit-oriented development (TOD) at the front door of DIA,” said Cal Fulenwider, III, CEO of LC Fulenwider, Inc. “Peña Station NEXT is raising the bar for real estate development in the United States by utilizing clean, smart, connected, and sustainable technologies as the basis of our master plan. Having Panasonic Enterprise Solutions Company as our partner guarantees we will always be the technological leader and at the cutting edge of smart, sustainable development.”

— Solar Builder magazine