News Briefs

A roundup of recent developments in green building

read more


Itron Utility Week 2015: Live-Stream This Week’s Key Sessions

This week's live stream schedule:

Monday, October 12, 8:00-8:30 a.m. PDT: Opening General Session

Why is it important to pursue resourceful innovation? What role will Itron play to help shape utilities of the future? Listen in as we kick off the 2015 Itron Utility Week Knowledge Conference with a special address from Itron’s Philip Mezey, president and CEO, and Itron’s Sharelynn Moore, vice president of global corporate marketing and public affairs.

Monday, October 12, 2:30-3:15 p.m. PDT: The Energy-Water Nexus: A Discussion of Pathways to Solutions

As both energy and water become scarcer, more costly and in greater demand, it is important to look at the connection between the two. This interdependency is known as the water and energy nexus, which refers to the fact that generating energy is water-intensive and treating and distributing water is energy-intensive. In this session, the leading energy-water nexus expert will discuss the connection and costs between water and energy and provide suggested approaches for thinking about and addressing energy and water management.

Tuesday, October 13, 8:00-9:30 a.m. PDT: General Session

Consumer trends expert Kelly...


Getting to $1.00 per Watt: What Tricks Do Solar EPCs Have Left in the Bag?

With the planned federal Investment Tax Credit step-down on the horizon, utility project developers and EPCs are turning over every rock in search of cost reductions. In its latest report, PV Balance of Systems 2015, GTM Research uncovers the most significant areas for solar PV cost reductions over the next five years.

As of the second quarter of this year, GTM Research’s modeled turnkey cost of a fixed-tilt utility system is $1.49 per watt, down from $1.58 per watt in the first quarter of the year. Modules represent 45 percent of that cost, and balance of systems encompass the remaining 55 percent.

Report author MJ Shiao notes that cost reduction isn’t going to come just from big-ticket items like 1,500-volt systems and higher module efficiencies. Rather, many small optimizations will ultimately drive system costs toward $1.00 per watt.

One area that will see significant reductions is the electrical balance of systems (EBOS), which includes inverters, wiring, skid components, DC protection and combiners, AC subsystems, and monitoring equipment. Cost reduction comes primarily from eliminating the amount of EBOS material necessary to build a project.

For example, the...



Subscribe to receive our Newsletter: