A solar boom so successful, it’s been halted


In an attempt to jump on the solar trend, many homeowners in Oahu plunked down an investment on rooftop photovoltaic systems — but the response was so overwhelming, Scientific American reported, that the local electric company couldn’t manage the scale. The solar grid by Hawaiian Electric Co. (HECO) was not built to withstand the level of solar energy surging through it, meaning that residences will have to foot the bill for an upgrade. Scaling solar is a complicated issue fraught with many costs — but how much will everyday citizens have to pay to make green energy accessible?

Solar thin film maker ECD files for bankruptcy

Solar thin film maker Energy Conversion Devices held on for much longer than what some industry watchers had expected, but at the end, the Michigan company couldn’t resuscitate its downward spiral and on Tuesday announced it’s filing for bankruptcy.

After Solyndra: finding opportunity in the shifting solar industry

Solar companies worldwide will remember 2011 as a dark time in their history; the failing of Solyndra symbolizes that market volatility, and 2012 no doubt started with trepidation, writes Ucilia Wang in a comprehensive report on the solar industry in 2012 for GigaOM Pro.

Some good news: Fewer solar projects in Cali will fail in the future

The failure rate of developers to fulfill their renewable energy contract in California has historically been around 30-40 percent, but that failure rate is expected to come down now that utilities are seeing better prepared and managed projects — and more developers who are in the game.

Commerce Dept steps into Chinese solar trade war

A trade complaint filed against Chinese solar makers, accusing them of benefiting from illegal subsidies, has drawn a line in the sand for the U.S. solar industry. Now the Commerce Department has issued a finding that tilts the case in favor of the petitioner, SolarWorld.

Spain suspends clean power incentive program to rein in costs

Spain once symbolized a great solar boom – and then bust – as its government lowered incentives to reign growth. That repercussion of that boom has continued, however, and on Friday the government announced a suspension of the incentive program to cut costs.

Another changing of the guard for solar startup Nanosolar

Nanosolar, which has struggled for years to fulfill its promise as the next major thin-film solar manufacturer, announced Thursday it has a new CEO. Eugenia Corrales, who has been the startup’s head of engineering and operations, is taking over the chief executive post effective immediately.

A startup behind Dow’s solar shingles: NuvoSun

If you follow solar news, chances are you’ve heard of Dow’s solar shingles — a more aesthetic way to put panels on rooftops. Well, according to the founder and CEO of thin film solar startup NuvoSun, Dave Pearce, NuvoSun is the latest producer of Dow’s solar shingles

The next big thing for data centers: DC power

Although we live in an AC-dominated world, DC seems poised for a comeback, particularly in data centers. Facebook adopted a DC architecture in its Prineville, Ore., data center. SAP spent $128,000 retrofitting a datacenter at its offices in Palo Alto, Calif., to rely on DC power.