GE, Arizona Public Service Researching Grid Impact Of Solar Energy

Posted by weijing3333 on November 17th, 2015

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With energy experts forecasting substantial increases in solar power in the coming decades, GE researchers are working with Arizona Public Service (APS), the state's largest electric utility, to understand how large amounts of solar can best be integrated into today's grid.APS, along with four partners (including GE), was recently awarded a .3 million High Penetration Solar Deployment grant from the U.S. Department of Energy. The comprehensive first-of-its-kind study, which was approved earlier this month by the Arizona Corporation Commission, will take place in Flagstaff, Ariz.The team will help identify methods and technologies to optimize grid reliability and efficiency with high concentrations of distributed solar generation.

Specifically, the researchers will determine what current and new technologies are needed to accommodate higher penetrations of solar, as well as the point at which these technologies will be needed. The team will also study what changes utility controllers can expect in how they manage power and how the stability of the distribution network could be affected by fluctuating solar power production.APS plans to integrate 1.5 MW of solar power on a single feeder. Approximately 600 kW will come from residential photovoltaic rooftop installations, 400 kW will be generated from installations on commercial business properties and 500 kW will be incorporated from a utility-scale solar park installation. GE’s Brilliance solar inverter will be used by the utility to handle power conversion from the utility-scale solar installation.

Despite stagnant sales at the beginning of 2009, shipments of photovoltaic technologies grew 44% in 2009 to 7.9 GW, according to the Photovoltaic Manufacturer Shipments, Capacity & Competitive Analysis 2009/2010 report recently released by Navigant Consulting Inc."2009 was a challenging year for manufacturers, with low sales until the middle of Q2, followed by strong demand, crashing prices and low revenues," says Paula Mints, a director at Navigant Consulting and principal analyst for its PV services program. "As a result, most manufacturers struggled."Prices fell anywhere from 23% to 33%, and technology revenues for 2009 down by 16% to .8 billion - from billion in 2008. "2010 is looking better in terms of pricing, with wafer and cell prices increasing, easing margin pressure for manufacturers," Mints adds.The full report includes five- and 10-year analyses of capacity and shipments, analysis of 25 years of pricing data and trends, and forecasts of shipments by technology and technology revenues.The report can be purchased in its complete form through Navigant Consulting.
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