Solar

A Salute to Champions of Photovoltaics Today

Issue 0 and Volume 2.

We set out on our mission back in February 2010 with the idea that we would identify some of today’s solar thought leaders. We sent out a call for nominations, nominated a few of our own choices, collected information, and compiled as much as we could into these articles.

The Champions of Photovoltaics issue:

Champion photovoltaic companies and labs

Champions of photovoltaics technology

Champion advocates of solar

Champion investors in photovoltaics

China dominates economic development in solar PV space

We set out on our mission back in February 2010 with the idea that we would identify some of today’s solar thought leaders. We sent out a call for nominations, nominated a few of our own choices, collected information, and compiled as much as we could into this issue, which you can browse using the links to the left, or on our Champions of Photovoltaics page.

Of course, in any contest such as this, it is possible to recognize only a relatively few individuals and companies. Around the world, there are tens of thousands of people and thousands of companies that are involved at some level with the implementation of solar power — all are PV champions in my book. The German PV industry alone has created over 10,000 jobs in production, distribution, and installation.

The great news is that PV production has been increasing by an average of more than 20% each year since 2002. This makes it the world’s fastest-growing energy technology. At the end of 2009, the cumulative global PV installations surpassed 21GW. Germany installed a record 3.8GW of solar PV in 2009. Roughly 90% of this generating capacity consists of grid-tied electrical systems. Solar PV power stations today have capacities ranging from 10-60 MW (although proposed solar PV power stations will have a capacity of 150 MW or more).

A salute to champions of photovoltaics todayWorld solar photovoltaic (PV) installations were 2.83GW in 2007, and 5.95GW in 2008, a 110% increase. The three leading countries (Germany, Japan and the US) represent nearly 89% of the total worldwide PV installed capacity, but – more good news – the increased affordability of PV has made it a viable power generating option in many areas of the developing world. Indeed, sometimes the only option.

So, while we can only recognize a limited number in this issue, we will carry on our website and into the future. Please check out http://www.electroiq.com/index/photovoltaics/pv-champions.html for more champions and additional information.

Pete Singer, editor-in-chief. Read Pete’s blogs: Pete’s Posts and Small Tech Talk