Sunrise brief: Bundled rooftop solar from Sunnova wins bid to join New England bulk market


Sunnova Energy won a bid to provide 85 MW of aggregated rooftop solar energy through the recent Independent System Operator-New England Forward Capacity Auction. The company bundled thousands of rooftop solar systems to arrive at its bid.

The company said its commitment priced at nearly $3/kW-mo across the region. It expects the first-year value to be around $2 million, and the gross value across the delivery term to be roughly $38 million.

The final pricing was up from prior years, with systems in the Northeast Massachusetts and Boston, Southeast Massachusetts, and Rhode Island area securing $3.98/kW-mo. Connecticut and Western Massachusetts cleared at $2.61/kW-mo, and New Hampshire priced at $2.48/kEV batteryW-mo.

As a market participant, Sunnova’s residential solar portfolio will offer renewable energy capacity to the regional grid that serves New England. The company expects to begin participating in June 2024.

Partners to pursue lightweight battery technology

Battery weight means a lot when it comes to how far an electric vehicle can travel on a single charge. Romeo Power and Ecellix Inc., developer of micro-porous silicon anode battery materials, will work together on technology that could reduce the weight of a 1 MWh battery pack by up to 9,900 pounds. That reduction is equal to cutting the weight of a battery-electric Class 8 truck by up to 25%, adding as much as 660 miles of range on a single charge.

The two companies signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to cooperate in the development, validation, and launch of Ecellix’s battery technology, which aims to replace lithium-ion technology in commercial vehicles.

The partnership will combine Ecellix’s eCell technology with Romeo Power’s battery packs, modules, and battery management system. Exellix’s technology is claimed to add up to 50% more energy to current-generation lithium-ion batteries.

Complete Solar becomes even more complete

Complete Solar recently acquired Current Insight, an engineering company that provides CAD designs, structural engineering stamps, and electrical engineering stamps to solar companies. Terms were not disclosed.

Current Insight will continue to deliver CAD and engineering services to the solar industry. The companies said the acquisition augments Complete Solar’s offerings with three new products, creates new revenue opportunities, and further establishes its position as a sales, fulfillment, and services platform for the solar industry. Complete Solar currently serves 14 states and is based in San Ramon, California.

Fast charge, slow rollout?

Nearly three years after regulators gave their OK, Pacific Gas and Electric said that the first public, electric vehicle (EV) fast chargers installed through its EV Fast Charge program are now open at a single 7-Eleven location in West Sacramento.

Drivers can charge their vehicles at the four 125kW-capable EV fast chargers. The convenience store is open 24 hours a day and owns and operates the charging station. PG&E said it is working with the company to install fast chargers at other locations in the coming years.

In May 2018, state regulators approved $22.4 million for PG&E to install infrastructure that supports Direct Current Fast Charging for electric vehicles. Starting in early 2020 and continuing through 2025, PG&E will pay to install infrastructure at qualifying customer sites to support the expansion of publicly available fast charging stations for light-duty vehicles.

JinkoSolar to sign silicon supply deals

JinkoSolar Holding said it will sign a “strategic cooperation agreement” with Tongwei Co. to jointly invest in a high-purity crystalline silicon project with annual capacity of 45,000 metric tons, and a silicon wafer project with an annual production capacity of 15GW, as well as develop a more extensive industrial chain cooperation.

According to the agreement, JinkoSolar will own a 35% equity stake in the 45,000-ton high-purity crystalline silicon project, while Tongwei will hold a 30% equity stake in the 15 GW silicon wafer project. The production capacity and products of the joint venture for the high-purity crystalline silicon will be given priority to meet the production needs of the joint venture silicon wafer company. In addition, based on an earlier procurement contract for 93,000 metric tons of polycrystalline silicon, JinkoSolar will supply Tongwei with roughly 6.5 GW of silicon wafer products for three years.

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