Type of cell
|1||Sunpower||Maxeon Cell Technology||22.5%|
|2||Sanyo Electric||HIT Solar Cell Structure||20.2%|
|3||JA Solar||JAC M6SL Secium||20.0%|
|6||Shinsung Solar Energy||SH-1940S3||19.4%|
|7||E-Ton||Mono Cell 3BB||19.3%|
|9||Neo Solar Power||Perfect 19||19.2%|
MeyGen Ltd has just been granted approval by Fergus Ewing the Scottish Energy Minister, to commence the 86MW project, following the completion of the statutory approval process with the regulator Marine Scotland. This is considered a milestone for the joint venture company, with the development being the first phase of a possible 398MW capacity at the Orkney site.
Ewings was quoted saying:
“This is a major step forward for Scotland’s marine renewable energy industry. When fully operational, the 86 MW array could generate enough electricity to power the equivalent of 42,000 homes – around 40 per cent of homes in the Highlands.”
MayGen will install the first six of its AR1000 turbines at the site shortly providing a ‘demonstration array’. The AR1000 is claimed to be the world’s most powerful single-rotor tidal device measuring in at 22.5m in height. It is hoped with the project running to plan, that by 2020 all 400 of the devices could be operational.Schematic Here
The project is located off the north coast of Caithness in the Inner Sound of the Pentland Firth, home to one of Europe’s largest tidal resources.
Dan Pearson, CEO of MeyGen, added:
“the MeyGen team and its shareholders are thrilled to have reached this defining milestone. While there is still much work to be done, the prospects for delivering the first tidal energy array in the Pentland Firth, thereby establishing a stepping stone to commercialising tidal energy, are promising”.
Energy efficient, flexible and controllable Micro-CHP systems are being installed in the UK now.
Micro-CHP (micro combined heat and power) is a term referring to a group of technologies that generate both heat and electricity. Like a normal boiler these micro-CHP units can provide heating for your home or office, hot water and electricity as well! Micro-CHP still use mains gas or LPG but are more environmentally friendly and cost effective, plus they give you more control over your home’s heating and electricity consumption. They can also be integrated with conventional condenser boilers, ground and air source heat pumps and solar thermal systems.
Micro-CHP systems are similar in size and shape to domestic boilers; they can be wall hung or floor standing. If you have a conventional boiler then a micro-CHP boiler should be able to directly replace it. The installer must be MCS approved but for the householder there is very little difference in installation and operation. The only difference to a standard boiler is that they are able to generate electricity while they are heating water. A typical domestic system will generate up to 1kW of electricity once warmed up. Any electricity you generate and don’t use can be sold back to the grid whilst getting paid for what you generate by way of the Feed In Tariff (FIT).
Micro-CHP systems lower carbon emissions by generating their own electricity as a by-product of heat. Some systems are eligible for Feed-in Tariffs where you will earn a tariff for each KWH of electricity you generate and each KWH you export. (Click here for the latest FiT rates)
The standard Stirling engine micro-CHP generates about 6:1 heat to electricity so its electrical output is generally fairly low, however the rewards can still be felt, with it paying for itself in a reasonably short amount of time (subject to FIT payments).
The Fuel cell micro-CHP is new to the UK and global markets. Fuel cells work by taking energy from fuel at a chemical level instead of burning it so they don’t produce large quantities of carbon dioxide (or noise). They convert the chemical energy in fuel directly into electricity and heat. They could substantially decarbonise domestic energy production. An initiative by Ceramic Fuel Cells Ltd called ‘free BlueGen’ has been launched which will see fuel cell micro-CHP systems installed for free in the UK. The idea is that the install will be financed by an energy services company and the funds will be recouped through the UK’s feed-in tariff. The end user will only pay for the running costs at a minimum 10% discount on the cheapest local standard retail tariff.
‘The United Kingdom government has announced that it will be increasing its feed-in tariff of micro combined heart and power systems. Micro-CHP systems often make use of hydrogen fuel cells which are capable of producing a large amount of heat while generating electricity. The UK government believes that these systems hold a great deal of potential and could help the country become less dependent on fossil-fuels. The initiative may be good news for Ceramic Fuel Cells, whose BlueGen fuel cells are the only micro-CHP system that has received certification from the Microgeneration Certification Scheme.’ www.viridisec.co.uk
Here is a video on BlueGEN fuel cell micro-CHP.
EWT has installed a direct drive 0.5MW turbine at the Thorne Farm site in Devon recently.
This has seen the Dutch company gain traction in the market, with its 500kW, 61m tip DW52 turbine, now its 50th to be installed in the UK.
The DirectWind 52/54-500kW was developed in response to market demand for sites with low to moderate wind speed. This direct drive technology enables sites that would otherwise have been lost at the initial stages. This is due primarily to the low cut-in speed of 2.5m/s.
Porterledge Renewable Limited (Project developer) has been quoted as saying;
“We originally earmarked the site for a 330kW turbine with 33-metre rotor diameter and a tip height of 53 metres, availability of the 330kW machine came to an end prior to planning permission so we looked for the machine closest in tip height while still in the 500kW turbine class. The EWT DW52 500kW with its tip height of 61m made for an easy route through planning with the bonus of a 60% increase in yield over the 330kW turbine.”
Today the new RHI regulations came into force, unfortunately for those who plan to install a biomass boiler, a serious error in the drafting of the new regulations means that all biomass installations up to 500kWth will be prevented from receiving the RHI payment. This is down to errors with elements in the regulations that are aimed at emissions and their certification.
All is not lost though as DECC have drafted proposals to rectify the issue with Parliament, when they next sit (sometime in December).
So what does this mean for my Biomass install?
Well if you have ‘fully made’ your application and have been provided with a tariff start date, it seems that this most probably will be honoured by Ofgem*. However, if you are considering installing biomass or are part way through an installation, Ofgem are still taking applications but the chance is they will be delayed until the issue has been rectified. It is therefore best to check directly with Ofgem to see whether/if you should enter details about air quality on the application.