18 Aug '11, 10pm

Solar PV Makes Most Sense at Modest Size

Solar PV Makes Most Sense at Modest Size

Is bigger better when building solar PV power plants? When looking at historic data in the U.S., no. But when considering other sources, perhaps. Ultimately, “community scale” solar is likely to provide the best combination of affordability, speed, and opportunity for local economic benefit. There are two good sources of solar installed cost in the U.S. market, the California Solar Initiative (CSI) dataset , which spans from 2006 to 2011 and the Lawrence Berkeley Labs’ 2010 report Tracking the Sun III . The following chart illustrates the cost per Watt to install solar PV projects, based on a range of system sizes. The historic data confirm earlier analyses by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance that found that most solar PV economies of scale are achieved at a small size. In the full CSI database, there’s a 23% decrease in per Watt cost when increasing project size from...

Full article: http://cleantechnica.com/2011/08/18/solar-pv-makes-most-s...

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