The newsletters focus on solar thermal applications considering the usage of heat produced by solar harvesting using solar collectors.

Issue 13 - October 2022

Absolicon Solar Collectors and MG Sustainable Engineering, Sweden organized the Solar Heat Innovation Week 2.0 in Härnösand from September 9th – 13th, following popular demand from the first event in February 2022. 

Students from Technical University of DenmarkEPF Ecole d’Ingénieur-e-sHanze University of Applied Sciences GroningenKTH Royal Institute of TechnologyUniversity of SkövdeUppsala UniversityLund University, and Karlsruhe Institute of Technology had the opportunity to participate in this event to learn and exchange ideas about solar thermal. The event comprised visits to Härnösand District Heating, Absolicon factory and the 1,000 sqm solar thermal park at Högslätten.

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Issue 14 - November 2022

Green technologies also have a carbon footprint. Energy is used for raw materials, production, transport and operation. Life cycle assessment (LCA) for renewable energy technologies is, however, a relatively new field of research. But it is growing rapidly in importance, as it provides valuable insights into the carbon footprint of the complete lifetime of a renewable energy plant. That is why the executive committee of the IEA Solar Heating and Cooling Programme approved the preparation phase of a research platform on LCA for solar thermal technology at its meeting in June 2022. New assessments from France show that large collector fields have a factor four lower LCA values than photovoltaic panels and at least a factor 20 lower than heat from gas-fired boilers. 

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Issue 15 - December 2022

At the beginning of November construction started of a 37 MWth solar district heating plant in Groningen, Netherlands. The 48,000 m2 collector field will be connected to the district heating grid of Groningen, which is operated by the utility company Warmtestad. Three companies joined forces to develop this ambitious project: Solarfields, Netherlands, as the project developer, K3, Netherlands, as the investor, and TVP Solar, Switzerland, as the turnkey provider of the solar field. Together they founded a special purpose vehicle (SPV) – an entity which owns and operates the plant. This is a business model established in renewable electricity projects to reduce the risks for financial institutions. The Groningen plant has a number of outstanding features.

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Issue 10 - July 2022

GlassPoint has recently signed a memorandum of understanding with Saudi Arabian mining company Ma’aden to develop a giant 1.5 GWth solar project in Ras al Khair, Saudi Arabia as part of a vertically integrated aluminum production complex.

When complete, the 1.5 GWth solar steam facility will be one of the biggest solar projects of any kind in the world. GlassPoint will deliver the lowest cost steam for producing oil, with mirrors inside a greenhouse to track the sun, and automated washing units to clean the roofs at night.

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Issue 11 - August 2022

Did you know that 50% of all energy consumed is in the form of heat, and only 20% is in the form of electricity?
It’s time to focus on generating clean and renewable heating if we really want to address climate change! Solar Heat Innovation Week 2.0, is a 5-day hackathon event held from September 9 – 13, 2022, at Härnösand, Sweden. This event is jointly organized by MG Sustainable Engineering, and Absolicon Solar Collector, a reference leader in solar thermal technology. Participants will get an opportunity to meet industry experts, visit an industrial solar thermal company as well as Sweden’s largest concentrating solar thermal field.

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Issue 12 - September 2022

Multinational corporations have discovered solar steam as an important way to achieve their climate protection goals. Among the global players that have purchased a solar industrial heat plant this year are the huge breweries Heineken and Carlsberg. 
Demand from the industrial sector has enabled the technology suppliers for solar concentrating heat solutions to grow significantly this year. At least 30 projects with 32.3 MWth are planned for commissioning by the end of 2022. This is four times more capacity than the 10 projects with only 8 MWth that started operation in 2021. Strong growth is again expected for 2023. 

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Issue 07 - April 2022

Local manufacturer and installer Inventive Power has completed what is reportedly the “first solar generated vapour purchase agreement in Latin America”. The Zero CAPEX model, similar to an ESCO agreement for heating, offers high investment return rates. Since December 2021 a 332 kWth parabolic trough plant has been delivering solar steam to the SME food processor Famo Alimentos in Guanajuato, Mexico (see photo). Inventive Power expects to install a further 12,000 m2 of solar industrial heat capacity in 2022. The increasing costs of fossil fuels in Mexican industry appear to be boosting SHIP projects without subsidies.

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Issue 08 - May 2022

Two weeks before the start of Russia’s war against Ukraine, France’s President Emmanuel Macron gave a speech in which he detailed his strategy for developing the nation’s energy sector. He left no doubt that nuclear energy would continue to play a central role, but at the same time attributed growing importance to renewable energy sources for the national energy mix. He announced financial support of around EUR 400 million for the industrial use of renewable energy sources. Now the war against Ukraine has further exacerbated the previously identified need to reduce dependence on imports of Russian gas. This also improves the prospects for the use of solar heat.

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Issue 09 - June 2022

NEW ROLE FOR CONCENTRATED SOLAR POWER, WITH GREEN HYDROGEN AND A PEROVSKITE TWIST

Green hydrogen is going down in cost, and concentrating solar power could pick up the pace by ditching electrolysis in favor of a thermochemical process. Researchers point out that PV cells only use part of the solar spectrum. The next big thing in solar power is the use of high heat in systems that put the entire spectrum to work from one end to the other.

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Issue 04 - January 2022

Why only generate energy on the roof and not also on the facades? The research project Solar-VHF examines how solar thermal energy can be combined with a curtain-type, rear-ventilated facade (VHF) as a heat exchanger. The Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics IBP and the Institute for Solar Energy Research Hameln ISFH participate in the scientific work. The professional association for building materials and components for ventilated curtain walls (FVHF) supports the preparation and implementation of pilot facades in multi-storey residential construction.

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Issue 05 - February 2022

The Solar Heat Innovation Week is a 5-day program organized by Absolicon Solar Collectors and MG Sustainable Engineering, with a mission of developing bright ideas into concepts in addressing the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. During the event, participants had the opportunity to engage with solar industry experts in lessons as well as group discussions on solar heat, visit Absolicon’s factory and the concentrating solar collector field at Högslätten, all with the aim of enhancing knowledge of solar heat. 

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Issue 06 - March 2022

At a workshop set to take place on 4th and 5th April, 2022 in Graz, Austria, the IEA Solar Heating and Cooling Programme will launch a new research platform about Efficient Solar District Heating Systems, also called Task 68.

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Issue 01 - October 2021

Saudi Arabia has launched an ambitious project that will develop a first-of-a-kind efficient coupling of concentrated solar power and desalination techniques. 19 partners and 12 countries are taking part in the 10M€ project. The “DESOLINATION” project is planned to last four years to 2025.

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Issue 02 - November 2021

Here are a few facts from the scientific community based on current incidents in various parts of the world:

1. Humans induced global warming and its largescale impact on weather patterns.
2. Because the atmosphere is used as a free dustbin for greenhouse gases, a thermal insulation layer is thickening around the planet.
3. The changing composition of the atmosphere and the resulting climate change are due to deforestation and our usage of fossil fuels.

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Issue 03 - December 2021

SUN-to-LIQUID is now recognized as one of the world’s best environmental projects winning the 22nd Energy Globe World Award in the category “Fire”, dedicated to projects on sustainable energy technologies. The Energy Globe World Award, is today the most recognized environmental award in the world.

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