There are just a few days left until the Intersolar Europe 2010 will open its doors to an estimated number of 60,000 visitors in Munich, Germany (9 to 11 June). The fair is by far the largest in Europe dedicated exclusively to solar thermal and photovoltaics technology.
Just in time for this mega-event, the European Solar Thermal Industry Federation (ESTIF) has published its latest market figures: They show that the newly installed collector area in the 27 member states and Switzerland was 4.3 million m2 in 2009 (3 GWth) - a minus of 10 % compared to 2008. The major markets all decreased, only Austria managed to grow slightly.The smaller market of Portugal, on the other hand, was one of the winners of last year, doubling its installed collector area. The steep growth may soon come to a sudden end, as the government halted the incentive programme in March. We are hoping to present you with some more positive news on the development of the world's solar thermal markets after the fair.
Best wishes for a successful trip to the Intersolar!
The editorial team
|Portugal: End of Subsidy Programme Jeopardises Market
by Bärbel Epp
Now it is official: The Portuguese government will not extend the solar thermal incentive programme, contrary to informal statements made by the responsible authorities since December 2009. Stopping the incentives could jeopardise a sector which has finally made good progress over the last year. Read more here
Northern Ireland: €55 Million for New Vacuum Tube Manufacturing Facility
by Chris Laughton
The completely new building complex and vacuum tube factory in Portadown, Northern Ireland, of the Irish Kingspan Group was officially inaugurated at the 19th of May. The new vacuum tube collector line is highly automated. "Once the raw glass tubing is fed into the line by a worker, the tube is not any more touched until the packaging unit," Operational Director Shane Caher explains. The Group invested EUR 55 million and created 163 new jobs. Read more here
ESTIF Statistics: Highs and Lows in the European Solar Thermal Market
by Bärbel Epp
More detailed market figures in this year's ESTIF Brochure: The 9-page market report will be launched at the Intersolar Europe, 9-11 June 2010 in Munich including for the first time a map with key figures as well as articles with background information on solar cooling and large solar thermal systems.Read more here
Calls for Intensive R&D on Solar Thermal Air Drying in India
by Jaideep Malaviya
The Indian Sardar Patel Renewable Energy Research Institute (SPRERI) organised a one-day workshop on solar thermal drying at the end of March 2010. Its aim was to intensify the efforts of tapping into the national market potential for using solar applications to dry agricultural products. The Solar air heating collector manufacturers expressed the wish to start an awareness campaign amongst farmers on a national level, since 75% of the country's income is earned in the agriculture sector.
Norway: 15 Years of Research on Polymer Materials for Collectors
by Bärbel Epp
The polymer absorber of the Norwegian company Solarnor was never produced in series. The company filed for bankruptcy at the beginning of the year. Solarthermalworld.org spoke with Hans-Christian, former CEO of Solarnor, and John Rekstad, researcher from the University in Oslo and founder of Solarnor, about the difficulties with polymer materials used in solar thermal collectors.
Read more here