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Iberdrola continues to move forward with its renewables strategy in Spain with four new photovoltaic projects, with an installed capacity of 250 megawatts (MW), already submitted for official approval in Castilla-La Mancha, as stated in the Official State Gazette (BOE) and the Official Journals of the Castilla-La Mancha regional government.

Two of the projects, Romeral and Olmedilla, each with a capacity of 50 MW, are located in Cuenca province, in the towns of Uclés and Valverdejo, respectively. In Toledo province, Iberdrola is planning the Barcience photovoltaic plant (50 MW) in Bargas; and in Ciudad Real province, it will develop a unique project in the municipality of Puertollano, with a capacity of 100 MW.

Puertollano II combines several innovative elements, both in the technology used and the storage capacity of this renewable project:

  • The installation will have bifacial panels, which will allow for greater production, as they have two light-sensitive surfaces, providing a longer service life;
  • The plant has been designed with daisy-chained inverters to improve performance and permit greater use of the surface area;
  • The project will have a storage system that will make the plant more manageable and optimise the control strategies. The battery system (with a power of 5 MW) will have a storage capacity of 20 MWh.
  • The start of the development of these projects increases the MW that Iberdrola has under construction and awaiting approval in Spain to more than 2,200: 75% of the capacity the company plans to install by 2022.

Plan to relaunch clean energy in Spain

These actions are part of the company’s commitment to strengthening its investment in clean energy generation in Spain, with the installation of 3,000 new MW up to 2022, 52% more than its current wind and solar capacity. Up to 2030, the forecasts point to the installation of 10,000 new MW. The plan will create jobs for 20,000 people.

Iberdrola is committed to leading the transition towards a completely carbon-free economy by promoting renewable energies and speeding up its investment in Spain, where it intends to spend 8.000 M€ between 2018 and 2022.

Iberdrola is the most prolific producer of wind power in Spain, with an installed capacity of 5,770 MW, while its total installed renewable capacity, including both wind and hydroelectric power, is 15,828 MW. The company operates renewables with a capacity of 2,229 MW in Castilla-La Mancha, mainly wind power, making it the autonomous region with the second highest total of ‘green’ MW installed by Iberdrola.

GWEC Market Intelligence has released its updated market outlook concluding that an additional 330 GW of wind energy capacity will be installed from 2019 to 2023, an increase of 9 GW from its market outlook published in Q1 2019. Main markets driving this volume increase are the US and Chinese onshore markets, which will both experience an installation boom over the next two years with 6.5 GW and 10 GW added capacity respectively from the Q1 2019 market outlook. The growing role of offshore wind in the global energy transition is a major reason for boosting overall growth, and will make up approximately 18% of total wind energy capacity by 2023, up from 9% in 2018. The continued growth of wind energy globally will be driven by the increasing cost competiveness of wind energy as well as market-based mechanisms such as auctions, tenders, and bilateral PPAs.

According to the updated market outlook released by GWEC Market Intelligence, an additional 330GW of new wind energy capacity will be added to the global energy market from 2019 to 2023, bringing total capacity to over 900 GW. The outlook has been increased by additional 9 GW from the outlook published in Q1 2019 in GWEC’s annual Global Wind Report.

From 2019 to 2023, the global wind energy market will grow at an annual rate of 4%, reaching a total capacity of over 900 GW by 2023. This growth rate means that an average of approximately an additional 14 GW will be added each year globally over the next five years compared to 2018 growth levels.

Through analysis of the developments of wind markets across the world, two main trends have been identified that will drive growth beyond 2023; the increasing share of so-called subsidy-free projects, and an increasing number of bilateral PPAs. Together, these two mechanisms will contribute to the cost competitiveness of wind energy and provide assurance for large-scale project development and the continued growth of wind energy globally.

Although there was a decrease in the outlook for India and Germany due to their challenging market conditions including the execution of their auctioned capacity, the growth in other markets more than make up for this deficit. With China going subsidy free by 2021 for onshore wind and the Production Tax Credit phasing out in the US, there will be an installation rush over the next two years in these two leading onshore markets.

The forecasts for emerging markets in Latin America, South East Asia, Africa and the Middle East have all been increased as well due to positive market developments. Additionally, it must be acknowledged the importance of offshore wind for driving growth, as it is set to take off globally over the next few years with a compound annual growth rate of 8% between 2019 and 2023, double that of onshore wind.

Wind energy is now one of the most cost-competitive energy sources available, so it is no surprise we will continue to see volume growth as global energy demand continues to increase. On average, 60 GW of onshore wind and 8-10 GW of offshore wind will be added worldwide until 2023. Even when not considering the two key growth markets of US and China, it will still be seen installation growth levels similar to those of the 2009-2010 wind energy boom in the other markets and regions. Although this outlook is very positive, it is not enough to meet the renewable energy targets needed to keep global warming under 1.5 C°.

Total new installations by year for onshore and offshore wind

2018: 50.12 GW
2019: 71.97 GW
2020: 76.43 GW
2021: 61.32 GW
2022: 62.02 GW
2023: 61.83 GW

Changes by region from Q1 2019 (onshore only)

North America: +6.5 GW
Latin America: +2 GW
Europe: -5.9 GW
Africa and the Middle East: +0.8 GW
Asia Pacific: +5.7 GW

Sulzer Schmid, a Swiss company pioneering UAV technology for rotor blade inspections, and NNAISENSE, an artificial intelligence specialist, have partnered to develop an artificial intelligence engine to automatically detect rotor blade damages on wind turbine. This leapfrog technology is expected to bring the twin benefits of improving the productivity and consistency of blade inspection processes.

With this new development effort, the two partners are aiming to build the industry’s most powerful artificial intelligence engine able to recognize damages based on inspection image material. The initial version will be able to flag all areas of concern on any given damaged blade. Ensuing upgrades will add other capabilities such as the ability to establish damage categories and severity levels.

The autonomously flying drones of the 3DX™ Inspection Platform of Sulzer Schmid assure high-definition quality and consistent image acquisition time as well as 100% blade coverage while minimizing human errors and operational risks. The cutting-edge image assessment tools of the platform ensure detailed and efficient damage assessment. With the support of an AI-enabled inspection software, the review work of blade experts will be greatly facilitated. Instead of having to review the entire surface of the blades, they will simply need to focus on the pre-selected areas of concern. This technology progress will not only significantly boost the productivity of the reviewing teams but will also improve the quality of damage annotation processes.

Source: Sulzer Schmid

Wind technology contracts activity in July 2019 saw 53 contracts announced, marking a drop of 32% over the last 12-month average of 78, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

Onshore was the top category in wind technology in terms of number of contracts for the month, accounting for 35 contracts and a 66% share, followed by Offshore with 17 contracts and a 32.1% share. Onshore Repowered stood in third place with one contract and a 1.9% share.

Looking at global power contracts activity divided by the type of technology, wind held the second position in terms of number of contracts during July 2019 with a 29% share.

The proportion of contracts by category in the Wind technology tracked by GlobalData in the month was as follows:

  • Supply & Erection: 21 contracts and a 39.6% share
  • Project Implementation: 19 contracts and a 35.8% share
  • Power Purchase Agreement: ten contracts and an 18.9% share
  • Repair, Maintenance, Upgrade & Others: one contract and a 1.9% share
  • Consulting & Similar Services: one contract and a 1.9% share
  • Electricity Supply: one contract and a 1.9% share

 

Europe leads wind contracts activity in July 2019
Comparing contracts activity in wind technology in different regions of the globe, Europe held the top position with 24 contracts and a share of 45.3% during July 2019, followed by North America with 14 contracts and a 26.4% share and Asia-Pacific with eight contracts and a 15.1% share.

In fourth place was South and Central America with four contracts and a 7.5% share and in fifth place was Middle East and Africa with three contracts and a 5.7% share.

Wind technology contracts in July 2019: Top companies by capacity
The top issuers of contracts in Wind technology for the month in terms of power capacity involved were:

  • EDF Renewables North America (United States): 514MW from two contracts
  • Plambeck Emirates: 500MW from one contract
  • EDF Renewables (United States) and Abu Dhabi Future Energy (United Arab Emirates): 415.8MW capacity from one contract

Wind technology contracts in July 2019: Top winners by capacity
The top winners of contracts for the month in terms of power capacity involved were:

  • Infrastructure and Energy Alternatives (United States): 514MW from two contracts
  • Saipem (Italy): 500MW from one contract
  • Vestas Mediterranean (Spain): 415.8MW capacity from one contract

Source: GlobalData

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The Nordex Group is further extending its product portfolio in the market segment of wind turbines with a nominal capacity of more than 5 MW. The N163/5.X wind turbine will be presented at the German Husum Wind Fair, which takes place from 10 – 13 September 2019.

Compared to the recently launched N149/5.X wind turbine, the N163/5.X shows its strengths particularly on projects with lower wind speeds. The nacelle, gearbox and all system components of the N163/5.X have been taken over from the N149/5.X. A new element is the single-piece rotor blade, with a length of nearly 80 m, based on the proven and tested glass fibre/carbon fibre differential construction concept of the N149, which Nordex has been using in serial production for its blades since 2011.

The rotor diameter has been increased by 14 m to a total of 163 m compared to that of the N149/5.X. This makes it one of the biggest rotors in the onshore segment. This larger rotor diameter results in a swept area of 20,867 m2 Compared to the N149/4.0-4.5, currently being produced in series, this means an additional yield of up to 20 percent for the new wind turbine.

The N163/5.X is designed for maximum flexibility and can be operated in different modes in the 5 MW range depending on site requirements and customer needs. This enables customers to individually configure the wind farm with regards to energy yield, turbine lifetime, rating and sound requirements, and thus adapt it ideally to the specific business model. The N163/5.X continues the successful approach of a flexible power range of the Delta4000 wind turbines N149/4.0-4.5 and N149/5.X.

The wind turbine will initially be offered with hub heights of between 118 and 164 m. The wind turbine options also include a cold climate version for operation in temperatures as low as -30°C. The start of the series production of the N163/5.X is scheduled for 2021.

Source: Nordex Group

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Ireland is expected to attract massive investment as the country is set to add 5.8 GW of non-hydro renewable power capacity over the next decade to reach a total 9.6 GW by 2030 and account for 65% of the country’s installed capacity, according to the report from GlobalData, “Ireland Power Market Outlook to 2030, Update 2019 – Market Trends, Regulations, and Competitive Landscape”. The report, reveals that to achieve a 9.6 GW non-hydro renewables capacity by 2030 Ireland will massively increase its investment in offshore wind and solar PV capacity.

During the forecast period, offshore wind capacity is set to increase from 25 MW to 1.9 GW at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 48.8%, and solar PV will rise from 25 MW to 1.3 GW at a CAGR of 43%. During the same period, power consumption in Ireland will see a minimal increase, reaching 31.4 TWh in 2030 from 27.9 TWh in 2019 (a marginal 1.1% CAGR).

Ireland’s offshore wind and solar PV capacity, has considerable potential, which will push the contribution of renewable power to installed capacity to 62% by 2025 and 65% by 2030. This will open up new markets for wind turbines and modules for solar plants, as well as associated equipment required for transmitting generated power to the grid. The market for laying cables under the sea will also be a key business opportunity in the country.

This addition to Ireland’s renewable power capacity is being driven by various government incentives and policies intended to fill the void left by the phasing out of coal in 2025.

Renewable capacity expansion will necessitate grid modernization in order to manage much higher volumes of renewable energy with inherent variability. This, in turn, will involve huge investment in grid infrastructure along with the introduction of energy storage systems to enable a steady supply of power when renewable energy is unavailable.

With a minimal increase in power consumption expected, Ireland’s gas-based power capacity, which provides the country’s base-load power demand, combined with those new renewable resources with integrated energy storage systems are well placed to meet the country’s power demands over the next decade.

Source: GlobalData

The in-depth study, which analyses hydrogen’s current state of play and offers guidance on its future development, is being launched by Dr Fatih Birol, the IEA’s Executive Director, alongside Mr Hiroshige Seko, Japan’s Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, on the occasion of the meeting of G20 energy and environment ministers in Karuizawa, Japan.

Hydrogen can help to tackle various critical energy challenges, including helping to store the variable output from renewables like solar PV and wind to better match demand. It offers ways to decarbonise a range of sectors (including long-haul transport, chemicals, and iron and steel) where it is proving difficult to meaningfully reduce emissions. It can also help to improve air quality and strengthen energy security.

A wide variety of fuels are able to produce hydrogen, including renewables, nuclear, natural gas, coal and oil. Hydrogen can be transported as a gas by pipelines or in liquid form by ships, much like liquefied natural gas (LNG). It can also be transformed into electricity and methane to power homes and feed industry, and into fuels for cars, trucks, ships and planes.

To build on this momentum, the IEA report offers seven key recommendations to help governments, companies and other stakeholders to scale up hydrogen projects around the world. These include four areas:

  • Making industrial ports the nerve centres for scaling up the use of clean hydrogen;
  • Building on existing infrastructure, such as natural gas pipelines;
  • Expanding the use of hydrogen in transport by using it to power cars, trucks and buses that run on key routes;
  • Launching the hydrogen trade’s first international shipping routes.

 

The report notes that hydrogen still faces significant challenges. Producing hydrogen from low-carbon energy is costly at the moment, the development of hydrogen infrastructure is slow and holding back widespread adoption, and some regulations currently limit the development of a clean hydrogen industry.

Today, hydrogen is already being used on an industrial scale, but it is almost entirely supplied from natural gas and coal. Its production, mainly for the chemicals and refining industries, is responsible for 830 million tonnes of CO2 emissions per year. That’s the equivalent of the annual carbon emissions of the United Kingdom and Indonesia combined.

Reducing emissions from existing hydrogen production is a challenge but also represents an opportunity to increase the scale of clean hydrogen worldwide. One approach is to capture and store or utilise the CO2 from hydrogen production from fossil fuels. There are currently several industrial facilities around the world that use this process, and more are in the pipeline, but a much greater number is required to make a significant impact.

Another approach is for industries to secure greater supplies of hydrogen from clean electricity. In the past two decades, more than 200 projects have started operation to convert electricity and water into hydrogen to reduce emissions.

Expanding the use of clean hydrogen in other sectors – such as cars, trucks, steel and heating buildings – is another important challenge. There are currently around 11,200 hydrogen-powered cars on the road worldwide. Existing government targets call for that number to increase dramatically to 2.5M by 2030.

Policy makers need to make sure market conditions are well adapted for reaching such ambitious goals. The recent successes of solar PV, wind, batteries and electric vehicles have shown that policy and technology innovation have the power to build global clean energy industries.

Deep declines in wind, solar and battery technology costs will result in a grid nearly half-powered by the two fast-growing renewable energy sources by 2050, according to the latest projections from BloombergNEF (BNEF). In its New Energy Outlook 2019 (NEO), BNEF sees these technologies ensuring that – at least until 2030 – the power sector contributes its share toward keeping global temperatures from rising more than 2 ºC.

Each year, NEO compares the costs of competing energy technologies through a levelized cost of energy analysis. This year, the report finds that, in approximately two-thirds of the world, wind or solar now represent the least expensive option for adding new power-generating capacity.

Electricity demand is set to increase 62%, resulting in global generating capacity almost tripling between 2018 and 2050. This will attract $13.3 trillion in new investment, of which wind will take $5.3 trillion and solar $4.2 trillion. In addition to the spending on new generating plants, $840 billion will go to batteries and $11.4 trillion to grid expansion.

NEO starts by analyzing technology trends and fuel prices. The results show coal’s role in the global power mix falling from 37% today to 12% by 2050 while oil as a power-generating source is virtually eliminated. Wind and solar grow from 7% of generation today to 48% by 2050. The contributions of hydro, natural gas, and nuclear remain roughly level on a percentage basis.

BNEF’s power system analysis reinforces a key message from previous New Energy Outlooks – that solar photovoltaic modules, wind turbines and lithium-ion batteries are set to continue on aggressive cost reduction curves, of 28%, 14% and 18% respectively for every doubling in global installed capacity. By 2030, the energy generated or stored and dispatched by these three technologies will undercut electricity generated by existing coal and gas plants almost everywhere.

The projected growth of renewables through 2030 indicates that many nations can follow a path for the next decade and a half that is compatible with keeping the increase in world temperatures to 2 degrees or less. And they can do this without introducing additional direct subsidies for existing technologies such as solar and wind.

The days when direct supports such as feed-in tariffs are needed are coming to an end. Still, to achieve this level of transition and de-carbonization, other policy changes will be required – namely, the reforming of power markets to ensure wind, solar, and batteries are remunerated properly for their contributions to the grid. NEO is fundamentally policy-agnostic, but it does assume that markets operate rationally and fairly to allow lowest-cost providers to win.

Europe will decarbonize its grid the fastest with 92% of its electricity supplied by renewables in 2050. Major Western European economies in particular are already on a trajectory to significantly decarbonize thanks to carbon pricing and strong policy support. The U.S., with its abundance of low-priced natural gas, and China, with its modern fleet of coal-fired plants, follow at a slower pace.

China sees its power sector emissions peaking in 2026, and then falling by more than half in the next 20 years. Asia’s electricity demand will more than double to 2050. At $5.8 trillion, the whole Asia Pacific region will account for almost half of all new capital spent globally to meet that rising demand. China and India together are a $4.3 trillion investment opportunity. The U.S. will see $1.1 trillion invested in new power capacity, with renewables more than doubling its generation share, to 43% in 2050.

The outlook for global emissions and keeping temperature increases to 2 degrees or less is mixed, according to this year’s NEO. On the one hand, the build-out of solar, wind and batteries will put the world on a path that is compatible with these objectives at least until 2030. On the other hand, a lot more will need to be done beyond that date to keep the world on that 2 degree path.

One reason is that wind and solar will be capable of reaching 80% of the electricity generation mix in a number of countries by mid-century, with the help of batteries, but going beyond that will be difficult and will require other technologies to play a part – with nuclear, biogas-to-power, green hydrogen-to-power and carbon capture and storage among the contenders.

BNEF’s analysis suggests that governments need to do two separate things – one is to ensure their markets are friendly to the expansion of low-cost wind, solar and batteries; and the other is to back research and early deployment of these other technologies so that they can be harnessed at scale from the 2030s onwards.

In NEO 2019, BNEF for the first time considers 100% electrification of road transport and the heating of residential buildings, leading to a significant expansion of power generation’s role.

Under such this projection, overall electricity demand would grow by a quarter compared to a future in which road transport and residential heat only electrify as far as assumed in the main NEO scenario. Total generation capacity in 2050 would have to be three times the size of what is installed today. Overall, electrifying heat and transport would lower economy-wide emissions, saving 126GtCO2 between 2018 and 2050.

Source: BloombergNEF (BNEF)

Today the average car runs on fossil fuels, but growing pressure for climate action, falling battery costs, and concerns about air pollution in cities, has given life to the once “over-priced” and neglected electric vehicle. With many new electric vehicles (EV) now out-performing their fossil-powered counterparts’ capabilities on the road, energy planners are looking to bring innovation to the garage — 95% of a car’s time is spent parked. The result is that with careful planning and the right infrastructure in place, parked and plugged-in EVs could be the battery banks of the future, stabilising electric grids powered by wind and solar energy.

EVs at scale can create vast electricity storage capacity, but if everyone simultaneously charges their cars in the morning or evening, electricity networks can become stressed. The timing of charging is therefore critical. ‘Smart charging’, which both charges vehicles and supports the grid, unlocks a virtuous circle in which renewable energy makes transport cleaner and EVs support larger shares of renewables,” says Dolf Gielen, Director of IRENA’s Innovation and Technology Centre.

Looking at real examples, a new report from IRENA, Innovation Outlook: smart charging for electric vehicles, guides countries on how to exploit the complementarity potential between renewable electricity and EVs. It provides a guideline for policymakers on implementing an energy transition strategy that makes the most out of EVs.

Smart implementation

Smart charging means adapting the charging cycle of EVs to both the conditions of the power system and the needs of vehicle users. By decreasing EV-charging-stress on the grid, smart charging can make electricity systems more flexible for renewable energy integration, and provides a low-carbon electricity option to address the transport sector, all while meeting mobility needs.

The rapid uptake of EVs around the world, means smart charging could save billions of dollars in grid investments needed to meet EV loads in a controlled manner. For example, the distribution system operator in Hamburg — Stromnetz Hamburg — is testing a smart charging system that uses digital technologies that control the charging of vehicles based on systems and customers’ requirements. When fully implemented, this would reduce the need for grid investments in the city due to the load of charging EVs by 90%.

IRENA’s analysis indicates that if most of the passenger vehicles sold from 2040 onwards were electric, more than 1 billion EVs could be on the road by 2050 — up from around 6 million today —dwarfing stationary battery capacity. Projections suggest that in 2050, around 14 TWh of EV batteries could be available to provide grid services, compared to just 9 TWh of stationary batteries.

The implementation of smart charging systems ranges from basic to advanced. The simplest approaches encourage consumers to defer their charging from peak to off-peak periods. More advanced approaches using digital technology, such as direct control mechanisms may in the near future serve the electricity system by delivering close-to real-time energy balancing and ancillary services.

Advanced forms of smart charging

An advanced smart charging approach, called Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G), allows EVs not to just withdraw electricity from the grid, but to also inject electricity back to the grid. V2G technology may create a business case for car owners, via aggregators, to provide ancillary services to the grid. However, to be attractive for car owners, smart charging must satisfy the mobility needs, meaning cars should be charged when needed, at the lowest cost, and owners should possibly be remunerated for providing services to the grid. Policy instruments, such as rebates for the installation of smart charging points as well as time-of-use tariffs, may incentivise a wide deployment of smart charging.

We’ve seen this tested in the UK, Netherlands and Denmark. For example, since 2016, Nissan, Enel and Nuvve have partnered and worked on an energy management solution that allows vehicle owners and energy users to operate as individual energy hubs. Their two pilot projects in Denmark and the UK have allowed owners of Nissan EVs to earn money by sending power to the grid through Enel’s bidirectional chargers.

Perfect solution?

While EVs have a lot to offer towards accelerating variable renewable energy deployment, their uptake also brings technical challenges that need to be overcome.

IRENA analysis suggests uncontrolled and simultaneous charging of EVs could significantly increase congestion in power systems and peak load. Resulting in limitations to increase the share of solar PV and wind in power systems, and the need for additional investment costs in electrical infrastructure in form of replacing and additional cables, transformers, switchgears, etc., respectively.

An increase in autonomous and ‘mobility-as-a-service’ driving — i.e. innovations for car-sharing or those that would allow your car to taxi strangers when you are not using it — could disrupt the potential availability of grid-stabilising plugged-in EVs, as batteries will be connected and available to the grid less often.

Impact of charging according to type

It has also become clear that fast and ultra-fast charging are a priority for the mobility sector, however, slow charging is actually better suited for smart charging, as batteries are connected and available to the grid longer. For slow charging, locating charging infrastructure at home and at the workplace is critical, an aspect to be considered during infrastructure planning. Fast and ultra-fast charging may increase the peak demand stress on local grids. Solutions such as battery swapping, charging stations with buffer storage, and night EV fleet charging, might become necessary, in combination with fast and ultra-fast charging, to avoid high infrastructure investments.

Source: IRENA

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The Energy Division of Acciona has developed a pioneering solution at global level in the field of hybridization between wind and photovoltaic power. It consists of covering a wind turbine tower with flexible organic panels to produce energy for the internal electricity consumption of the turbine. The innovative project will allow the study of the performance of the organic panels -an emerging photovoltaic technology- and their application to improve wind turbine efficiency.

The system has been installed in one of the turbines of the Breña Wind Farm (Albacete, Spain), which ACCIONA owns and operates. The turbine is an AW77/1500 of Nordex-Acciona Windpower technology, mounted on an 80-metre-high steel tower (hub height).

Installed on the tower are 120 solar panels facing southeast-southwest to capture the maximum of the sun’s rays throughout the day. They are distributed at eight different heights, occupying around 50 metres of the tower’s surface area. The photovoltaic modules, with an overall capacity of 9.36 kWp, are of Heliatek technology (HeliaSol 308-5986 model). They are only 1 mm thick, and each one has a surface area of 5,986 x 308 mm.

In contrast to the conventional technology used in the manufacture of photovoltaic models based on silicon, these organic panels use carbon as raw material and are characterized by their structural flexibility, which makes them adaptable to very different surfaces. Other key features are lower maintenance costs, less energy consumption during manufacture, easier logistics and the complete recycling of the materials used, although their efficiency is still below that of silicon modules.

The hybridization project in Breña means the optimization of the use of space for renewable energy production and it will enable us to test the efficiency of organic photovoltaics, a technology that we believe has one of the best improvement curves in terms of technological efficiency. That is why we have decided to pilot it”, says Belén Linares, Energy Innovation Director in Acciona.

Optimizing generation

The immediate application of the Breña project is to produce part of the energy that the internal systems of the wind turbine need. When the turbine is running, some of the energy generated is used to power the auxiliary systems. In shutdown mode, certain systems need to continue functioning so they are fed from the grid, which means that the wind turbine is registering a net consumption of energy.

The new photovoltaic system with panels on the tower will be able to cover, completely or partially, the energy demand related to the operation of the wind turbine when there is solar radiation, or even -in a possible later phase of the project- when the sun is not shining. This would be done through a battery storage system, leading to an improvement in the net production sent to the grid.

The organic panels are connected to two inverters that convert DC into AC for later connection to the grid which supplies the electrical equipment of the wind turbine.

The entire system is monitored with a view to evaluating it under real conditions, both from the point of view of energy production and degradation of the solar modules. Conceptually, it is a very innovative design in relation to previous experiences in wind power-photovoltaic hybridization, based on panels installed on the ground.

The idea is part of a wide-ranging innovation project driven by Acciona to study a number of emerging photovoltaic technologies, with the aim of pioneering the adoption of more efficient solutions in each case and consolidating its leadership as a PV developer. The company currently has over 1,200 MWp in operation or under construction in different parts of the world.

Source: Acciona

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