Rooftop, Solar

Northern Germany, Spain land new PV installs

Conergy Germany GmbH has opened a 4.2 megawatt (MW) solar photovoltaic facility in Hörup near Flensburg–the largest solar park in northern Germany, and Energy Conversion Devices (ECD) has signed an agreement with Endesa to install 3MW of UNI-SOLAR photovoltaic laminates on the rooftops of two Coca-Cola Company buildings in Seville, Spain.

[From RenewableEnergyWorld.com]

Conergy Germany GmbH has opened a 4.2 megawatt (MW) solar photovoltaic facility in Hörup near Flensburg–the largest solar park in northern Germany. The project is one of the first of this size to be built in Northern Germany, which until recently has been slow to adopt solar PV technology as Southern regions of the country have.

The company completed the park in just over a three-month construction period, and it is now connected to the local power grid. Conergy installed the solar park over an area of 15 hectares, utilizing a total of 55,818 thin film modules. The modules were installed on 36,505 customized rack systems of the type linear Conergy and Conergy IPG series inverters 280 connected.

“The north thaws! What was unthinkable until recently has started to appear,” says Norbert Apfel, managing director of Conergy Germany GmbH. “Large solar projects no longer are reserved only for the sun-drenched south. The megawatt project in Hörup shows photovoltaics are on the rise in the north.”

Also in Europe, fresh off the heels of announcing that it was planning to lay of 20% of its workforce as part of a restructuring plan, Energy Conversion Devices (ECD) has signed an agreement with Endesa to install 3MW of UNI-SOLAR photovoltaic laminates on the rooftops of two Coca-Cola Company buildings in Seville, Spain.

Through its wholly owned subsidiary, United Solar Ovonic, ECD will oversee construction of the rooftop system, which will use UNI-SOLAR laminates bonded to the Giscosa waterproofing system and applied directly on the roofs. Construction will begin this quarter, with completion expected in the first half of calendar 2010.The system will be owned and managed by Endesa.

“We are excited to partner with ECD and United Solar on our largest rooftop solar project to date,” says Andreu Cladera, product manager for PV of Endesa Spain. “UNI-SOLAR laminates are the perfect product for the type of low-load bearing rooftops that exist all over Spain. Their ability to generate more electricity per rated watt compared to other types of solar products made it easier for us to secure project financing.”

ECD has come under fire from two Michigan Congressmen in the last week amid controversy that it is planning to lay off 400 workers while continuing to produce solar panels through the Federal Prison Industries manufacturing program. The program pays federal prisoners well under market wage to manufacture, among other things solar panels.

The Congressman say that the program is taking away jobs from unemployed residents of both Michigan, and New York where the panels are being manufactured, while proponents for the program say that Federal Prison Industries keep manufacturing jobs in the U.S. and provide tax payers with a return on the money they are spending to keep prisoners incarcerated.