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Week Review 8-12 August - India surpasses 8GW solar mark; SMA & SunPower earnings; 10GW under construction in USA

12 Aug. 2016 by Tom van der Linden, Solarplaza

India surpasses 8GW PV capacity mark

The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) published their latest installation figures, confirming that over 8GW of solar energy has cumulatively been installed in India, with the largest contributing states being Rajasthan (1,295MW), Tamil Nadu (1,267MW) and Gujarat (1,123MW). 

UK Government admits: solar will be cheaper by time Hinkley nuclear plant is completed

An unpublished report the UK government provides calculations that sets large scale solar costs at around GBP 50-75 / MWh by 2025, versus the GBP 85-125 / MWh picture of nuclear by that time. Projections show that, throughout its lifetime, the Hinkley plant is likely to cost British taxpayers close to £30 billion in subsidies; a hard sell towards a solar sector that has been repeatedly told by the government to "stand on its own two feet" and was faced with severe cuts to support schemes.

SMA reports on H1 results; will consolidate production

10GW of utility-scale PV under construction in USA

According to GTM's Utility PV Market Tracker, over 10GW of utility-scale solar PV projects are currently under construction in the USA. A remarkable feat, considering it was only 3 years ago that the US market even reached a cumulative installed capacity of 10GW.    

SunPower reports on Q2 and announces restructuring

  • The company reports revenue of USD 420.5 million for Q2, 2016 up from USD 384.9 million in the first quarter of 2016. Gross margin was 9.8%, down from 13.4% in Q1, 2016.SunPower’s net loss decreased from USD 85.4 million in Q1, 2016 to USD 70.0 million in Q2, 2016.
  • SunPower also announced significant restructuring; closing their Philippine assembly plant, cutting 1,200 jobs (15% of their total workforce).
  • In terms of strategic focus, the company intends to reduce its activities in PV power plant development, and focus more on distributed generation and module production. Recently, First Solar also announced a strategic move away from project development, back towards manufacturing and sales.   

SunEdison 'yardsale' kicks off: NRG acuiring 2.1GW of assets

With the continued absence of a bidder to take up all assets of bankrupt solar company SunEdison, it seems like a process has started which will see their assets being sold of in smaller chunks. The first company to have their bid accepted is NRG, who have closed a purchase and sale agreement for 2.1GW of SunEdison's solar and wind projects for a sum of $188m.

SolarCity's 1GW factory to produce complete BIPV solutions

Following up on Elon Musk's hint towards Tesla/SolarCity providing fully integrated solar-roofs, SolarCity CTO Peter Rive confirmed that the Buffalo factory will be operational sooner than expected and will produce an innovative BIPV-solution. 

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