July 2014: Latest Hot Topics in Energy Technology

Solar and wind energy continue to gain market share. One report finds European countries to be the world’s most innovative and another report shows that California leads the U.S. in clean tech for the fifth consecutive year.

Solar Energy

“Global Market Outlook for Photovoltaics 2014-2018” Report Published

The European Photovoltaic Industry Association has just published its “Global Market Outlook for Photovoltaics 2014-2018” report. The report includes solar photovoltaic market figures for 2013 and a forecast for the 2014-2018 period. According to the report, the PV market progressed remarkably in 2013, with at least 38.4 GW of newly-installed solar photovoltaic capacity worldwide and a global cumulative installed capacity of 138.9 GW.

SEE ALSO: June, 2014: Renewable Energy Stats and Trends

Most Solar Panels Are Reliable

A new report, the PV Module Reliability Scorecard 2014, by GTM Research and PV Evolution Labs, now DNV GL, found that PV manufacturer’s solar panels performed relatively well across all metrics. However, “module reliability is not necessarily a consistent quality,” wrote report author, GTM Research solar analyst Jade Jones. “Of all vendors analyzed, only one company consistently ranked within the Performance Leaders group for all test regimens.”

Solar PV Is Leading World in Distributed Power Market

A new study by GlobalData found that solar photovoltaics (PVs) are already leading the world in the distributed power market consisting of 48% of the total distributed power capacity installed last year. In addition, the amount of annually installed distributed generation is slate to increase from 190 GW in 2013 to roughly 389 GW in 2019.

Wind Energy

Wind Turbines Can Benefit Wildlife

Scientists at the University of St Andrews have discovered that offshore pipelines and wind turbines can provide new feeding opportunities for the wildlife population in the area. The study, published in the journal Current Biology, found that some seals appeared to deliberately seek out and forage close to these structures.

Scientists Worry About Wind Turbines Catching Fire

Scientists at the Imperial College London suggest that incidents of wind turbines catching fire are a big problem that is not currently being fully reported. The team found that ten times more fires are happening than are being reported. Instead of an average of 11.7 fires each year, which is what is reported publicly, the researchers estimate that more than 117 separate fires are breaking out in turbines annually.

European Offshore Wind Industry Statistics Published

According to the EWEA report, on the first six months of 2014, Europe fully grid connected 224 offshore wind turbines in 16 commercial wind farms and one offshore demonstration site with a combined capacity totaling 781 MW. There are also 310 wind turbines awaiting grid connection.

Innovation and Clean Technology

Global Innovation Index 2014 Ranks Countries by Innovation

The Global Innovation Index 2014, co-authored by Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management Dean Soumitra Dutta, was released in Sydney, Australia, July 18 at the B20 international business summit. The report shows European countries as the world’s most innovative and finds encouraging signs from sub-Saharan Africa. According to the report, the United States is the world’s 6th most innovative economy.

2014 U.S. Clean Tech Leadership Index Ranks U.S. States by Clean-Tech Activities

Clean Edge, an American research and advisory firm, has released its 2014 U.S. Clean Tech Leadership Index, which tracks the clean-tech activities of all 50 states and the 50 largest metro areas in the U.S. According to Clean Edge, 11 states now generate more than 10% of their electricity from non-hydro renewable energy sources, with two—Iowa and South Dakota—exceeding 25%. Solar installations climbed more than 40% percent year-over-year in the U.S., while registrations of all-electric vehicles doubled between the 2013 and 2014 indexes, to approximately 200,000 nationwide.

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John Davenport is the Editor-in-Chief and active contributor for the Daily Fusion. He is an international journalist with more than 8 years of experience in print media, TV and public relations. Previously he worked as the newspaper editor, a freelance journalist and a telecom engineer. He holds a master’s degree in engineering and believes that it is reasonable to rely on scientific observation, data and experiments to reach right conclusions and avoid wrong ones.

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