Chinese, Israeli firms launch solar power test site

New type of solar panel geared toward harsh desert conditions tested at Kibbutz Yotvata.

November 28, 2012 02:48
2 minute read.
Landau, Simhon inaugurate test facility at Yotvata

Landau, Simhon inaugurate test facility at Yotvata 370. (photo credit: Yud Photos)


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A Chinese solar giant and an Israeli investment firm jointly launched a test facility for a new type of solar panel geared toward harsh desert conditions, at Kibbutz Yotvata early Tuesday morning.

The test site is part of the team’s new National Technology and Renewable Energy Center in Israel, also on the Yotvata campus, which will provide a platform for further testing of clean technologies, according to the companies.

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Capital Nature, the investment firm, focuses on funding and accelerating early stage ventures in the renewable energy field — particularly in the Eilot region.

Meanwhile, the solar firm, Suntech Power Holdings, is a China-based solar equipment manufacturer that has delivered more than 25 million photovoltaic panels to more than 1,000 customers in 80 countries, the company said.

Undergoing examination for its survival ability in the Israeli Arava Desert, Suntech’s new Superpoly 305 Watt V Series was installed at the kibbutz by its local distributor here, Enerpoint Israel.

The test site contains a 2.4- kilowatt module, which will undergo continuous performance analysis, the companies said. In the future, the overall facility will likely host over 50,000 square meters and 750 kilowatts worth of renewable beta structures.

“Our modules have a great reputation for performance in desert conditions,” said Dr.

Stuart Wenham, Suntech’s Chief Technology Officer said.

“We are very excited to work with and promote the development of Capital Nature’s testing center and we encourage other companies to put their panels to similar testing to make sure they can withstand the harsh desert conditions over 25 years.”

Danny Denan, CEO of Enerpoint Israel, said that his company has installed hundreds of solar projects across the country, many of which have been developed by Suntech — a company that he sees as a leader in solar technology globally.

The test site launch occurred just hours before the kick-off of the three-day Eilat-Eilot Fifth International Renewable Energy Conference and Exhibition, an event that is co-chaired by Capital Nature vice president of business development, Noam Ilan.

“We’ve commissioned this testing center to provide a professional testing ground for renewable energy technologies in real world conditions in the Arava desert so that companies can generate real time data to assess performance as well as estimate return on investment,” Ilan said. “We are very happy to add to our six Israeli pilot projects an international player such as Suntech and hope this will generate collaboration with Israeli technology.”

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