The potential of photovoltaics has always been underestimated
Photovoltaics still exceed all expectations. Since technology began to be used for mass electric production, technology has overflowed all perspectives.
In June and July, 23 GW of new photovoltaic solar power was installed in China alone, this is more than 40 million panels per month. A figure unthinkable just a few years ago.
Global competition between manufacturers has allowed the module to be lowered much faster than expected, mainly due to two factors; the improvement in manufacturing costs and the improvement in efficiency. The same module that only 4 years ago got 230W per unit, with the same dimensions now gets 290W.
This improvement has allowed, in turn, that each day install more photovoltaic panels in the world. When one market has declined, another has emerged more strongly, maintaining growth above all the estimates that have been made by various official bodies over time. Famous are the predictions of the International Energy Agency (IEA) to always stay below the reality.
At the end of September, the Intersolar Middle East conference was held in Dubai, where major solar energy investors and business groups such as Siemens and ABB have discussed the future of a business that is multiplying its turnover year after year.
At the same time in the old continent experts, researchers and developers met at the largest photovoltaic technology fair, EU PVSEC 2017, held this year in Amsterdam, where the technological advances of the sector were presented and debated. The industry is advancing by leaps and bounds to make each panel more efficient and economical in its manufacture. Soon we will have panels that are economical and efficient enough so that they can feed, for example, a thermostat in the house, without receiving direct sunlight, or allowing us to keep the car cool when we park in the sun.
The future is yet to be discovered, but if something has taught us photovoltaic energy over the years, it will be brighter than we are told.