Electrek morning green energy brief: 5% efficiency increase with PERC, Solar+Storage as disaster defense, Exxon loses in court, more

PERC cells at 20% efficiency leading towards 330W 72 cell modules from Suntech that are 5% more efficient – If you get 5% more energy out of a solar panel and everything else costs exactly the same – then your solar power system just got ~5% cheaper. These ‘small’ technological moves have significant pricing effects when you consider the broader supply chain and construction requirements.

Solar power and batteries being installed in New York City to defend against natural disasters – Strategically distributing solar panels and batteries in an ultra dense city can defend against large scale grid collapses. And New York City, after realizing that climate change can affect it so significantly when Hurricane Sandy hit, has decided to deploy. Certain projects that I’ve worked on in the city get an extra payment from the power company for installing areas that need the distributed energy. Cool to see a city planning on levels like this.

Healey wins showdown with Exxon Mobil on climate change – Exxon’s own engineers knew that climate change was man made in the 1970s. Exxon’s engineers told Exxon this fact. Exxon admitted to this fact and told Congress they would no longer fund climate change denial-ism. Exxon lied. They continued to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to manipulate the views of the public. The Attorney General is risking significant political backlash in the form of a well funded competition from the oil interests – and I damn sure hope she keeps the fight up.

Vivint Solar secures $303 million for residential solar – The residential lease market isn’t dead yet, and Vivint has $300 million more to prove it. The $303M is composed of two loans – one $100M and the other $203M. Vivint says they’ll build about 40,000 residential systems totaling 280MW of solar power.

Meyer Burger supplies diamond wire cutting tool – Sounds like a James Bond weapon. I keep hearing about lasers cutting cells but maybe not…

Tweet of the day – location of New York’s proposed 2.4GW wind farm –


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