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

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

February 9, 2017 at 8:00 am 6 comments

Looking ahead in an ever-evolving new industry like solar can be difficult, as “the next big thing” will come along and then be supplanted by something else the following year. But consider this a good bet: High-efficiency (HE) modules are going to be the expectation, not the exception. The valueRead More

Are solar roofs the next big thing?

Are solar roofs the next big thing?

February 6, 2017 at 11:00 am 1 comment

Suffice it to say, 2016 was a roller coaster year for the solar roof market. Twelve months ago, there was little general interest in the solar shingle market. Roof-integrated solar was seen as a niche market appealing to the few willing to pay the markup for a more expensive andRead More

Are solar-powered data centers just a PR stunt? What the numbers say

Are solar-powered data centers just a PR stunt? What the numbers say

February 2, 2017 at 9:57 am Comments are Disabled

In 2016, we’ve heard a lot of news about solar powered data centers, 100 percent renewably powered data centers, net-zero data centers and other similarly worded constructions that make companies sound good. However, those who actually know how much energy a data center guzzles every day are surely skeptical aboutRead More

Q&A: We get the inside scoop on Terrasmart’s new Robo-Surveyor

Q&A: We get the inside scoop on Terrasmart’s new Robo-Surveyor

January 30, 2017 at 11:06 am 1 comment

Going into 2017, everything you know about solar site surveying has changed, at least according to TerraSmart. Making its debut at the 2016 Solar Power International, TerraSmart’s Autonomous Precision Survey Rover (APSR) does just as the name suggests and automates the surveying process. Soon, a larger model will be ableRead More

A New Connection: How the cell-optimizer, string inverter combo could change PV systems

A New Connection: How the cell-optimizer, string inverter combo could change PV systems

January 23, 2017 at 2:26 pm 5 comments

Life is all about making connections. You never know when that former grade school pal will suddenly pop back into your life and cut you a good deal on car insurance (thanks, Joey), or, more relevant to this article, when two international companies form a close working relationship in oneRead More

What is the market outlook for the solar industry during a Trump reign?

What is the market outlook for the solar industry during a Trump reign?

January 16, 2017 at 10:30 am Comments are Disabled

The following is an article from the Jan/Feb 2017 edition of Solar Builder magazine. Are you a subscriber? Get your FREE print subscription to pass around the office, or save a tree and sign up for the digital edition. Also free. Ever since the results of Nov. 8, there hasRead More

Some solar carport install cost basics from RBI Solar

Some solar carport install cost basics from RBI Solar

January 12, 2017 at 1:04 pm Comments are Disabled

Whether you’re looking to maximize your parking lot, make a visible commitment to sustainability, or take advantage of local clean energy incentives, your carport options are as varied as the reasons for going solar. As mentioned in our Park-onomics feature, your preferences and needs will determine how your structure looks andRead More

All-In-One: All of your solar-plus-storage needs built into one cabinet

All-In-One: All of your solar-plus-storage needs built into one cabinet

January 9, 2017 at 9:47 am 1 comment

The second level exhibit hall at Intersolar in San Francisco (there are three floors total) is dedicated to balance of systems technology, and in 2016, that means the floor was almost entirely made up of energy storage systems as everyone readies for the solar-plus-storage dam to break. Or at leastRead More

Figure 1

PV Pointers: Tips for mounting PV on a low-slope roof

January 2, 2017 at 8:00 am 1 comment

What is a low slope roof? As defined by National Roofing Contractors Association, the pitch of a low-slope roof is equal to or less than 3:12, seen in Fig. 1. Before a low-slope rooftop system is designed, perform a structural evaluation of the roof deck, structural evaluation of the building,Read More

Solar Frontier’s 900 MW plant in Japan provided the scale needed to improve pricing.

Thin-Film in 2016: Don’t look now, but thin-film PV is positioned for growth

December 19, 2016 at 10:26 am Comments are Disabled

A narrative has formed around thin-film PV modules that doesn’t totally match the reality. Initially neck and neck with crystalline silicon as the solar industry grew in the ‘90s, some high-profile big bets, headlined by Solyndra, did not pay off. We won’t rehash that old territory, but where previous technologyRead More

 
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