National centre heralds bright future for UK solar

18 February 2013
By Mark Venables
Mobile version
Share |
Solar panels at the Eden Project in Cornwall

Solar panels at the Eden Project in Cornwall

A new National Solar Centre will begin operation In April in St Austell, Cornwall, managed by BRE.

It will support the government’s goal of increasing UK photovoltaic (PV) generation capacity from its current 1.8GW base up to a potential 20GW by 2020.

“We have a real opportunity here to drive the uptake of solar PV,” said BRE director Nick Tune. “The sector has seen a dramatic reduction in installed costs by up to 50 per cent from 2010-2012.”

The Centre will provide industry led research, analysis, testing and training that should help make solar competitive with other low-carbon electricity sources. There are particular opportunities in developing building-integrated PV products and the interaction of PV with commercial buildings. “We will also look at issues around smart grids, storage, power output prediction and more – all critical factors for improving the long term performance of the technology and creating confidence in its future,” Tune said.

The initiative is supported by Cornwall Council and has funding from the EU.

Speaking at the centre’s launch even, Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said: “Solar is an exciting and rapidly growing clean, green source of power and has a valuable part to play in the UK’s energy mix. The new Cornwall-based National Solar Centre will help drive down costs, improve efficiency, catalyse growth, spur innovation and develop expertise on the ground. We have seen dramatic reductions in costs of the technology over the past year and that’s why we have made changes to our incentives under Feed-in-Tariffs and the Renewables Obligation, to help put this industry on a more sustainable footing and ensure solar continues to thrive in the future.”

St Austell was chosen as the location for the Centre because the majority of the UK’s solar PV installations are in south-west England. Cornwall itself has the most sunshine hours of any county in the UK and offers a supportive infrastructure and business environment.

Latest Issue

E&T cover image 1604

"Should the UK's engineers be in or out of Europe? The IET sets out its official position on the EU referendum this week - will you agree?"

->

E&T jobs

  • QUANTITY SURVEYOR

    SSE
    • Melksham or Swindon or Oxford
    • SALARY £33,520 - £44,269 + CAR (SSE 7) DEPENDING ON SKILLS AND EXPERIENCE

    Due to continued growth and success of the performance team, we are looking to recruit two Quantity Surveyors to join our existing team, providing...

    • Recruiter: SSE

    Apply for this job

  • QUANTITY SURVEYOR

    SSE
    • Reading or Slough or Uxbridge
    • SALARY £33,520 - £44,269 + CAR (SSE 7) DEPENDING ON SKILLS AND EXPERIENCE

    Due to continued growth and success of the performance team, we are looking to recruit two Quantity Surveyors to join our existing team, providing...

    • Recruiter: SSE

    Apply for this job

  • QUANTITY SURVEYOR

    SSE
    • Bournemouth/Poole or Salisbury or Southampton
    • SALARY £33,520 - £44,269 + CAR (SSE 7) DEPENDING ON SKILLS AND EXPERIENCE

    Due to continued growth and success of the performance team, we are looking to recruit two Quantity Surveyors to join our existing team, providing...

    • Recruiter: SSE

    Apply for this job

  • Managing Estimator - Project Controls

    National Grid
    • Warwickshire, England
    • £57 - £65 per annum

    Managing Estimator - Warwick - National Grid Salary: £57-65k plus excellent benefits including: Performance Bonus, a generous pension scheme, flexible benefitsLocation: Warwick (CV34 6DA) - West Midlands We currently have an exciting opportunity for a

    • Recruiter: National Grid

    Apply for this job

  • SAP TEAM MANAGER GENERAL ENQUIRIES

    SSE
    • Melksham, Swindon or Oxford
    • £33,520 TO £44,269 + CAR (SSE7) DEPENDING ON SKILLS AND EXPERIENCE

    An exciting opportunity has arisen for an Overhead Tower Line Manager within Power Distribution covering Southern England.

    • Recruiter: SSE

    Apply for this job

  • Principal Engineer - Submarine Operability

    BAE Systems
    • Cumbria, England, Barrow-In-Furness
    • Competitive package

    As a Principal Engineer - Operability, you will be using your knowledge of submarine systems operation to influence the way the systems are designed, ensuring the Royal Navy personnel will be able to operate the system effectively

    • Recruiter: BAE Systems

    Apply for this job

  • OVERHEAD TOWER LINE MANAGER

    SSE
    • Southern England
    • SALARY £42,149 - £62,427 + CAR (SSE9/10) DEPENDANT ON SKILLS AND EXPERIENCE

    An exciting opportunity has arisen for an Overhead Tower Line Manager within Power Distribution covering Southern England.

    • Recruiter: SSE

    Apply for this job

  • Electrical Engineer - Water

    Premium job

    Mott MacDonald
    • Peterborough, Cambridgeshire

    Mott MacDonald's highly successful Water and Environment Unit is recruiting an electrical engineer....

    • Recruiter: Mott MacDonald

    Apply for this job

  • Electrical Design Engineer

    Premium job

    Mott MacDonald
    • Cambridge, Cambridgeshire

    Mott MacDonald's highly successful water business continues to win and deliver a fantastic amount of work....

    • Recruiter: Mott MacDonald

    Apply for this job

  • Senior Programme Manager

    Network Rail
    • England, London
    • £76800 - £86400 per annum

    Do you possess a track record of taking the lead on large projects?

    • Recruiter: Network Rail

    Apply for this job

More jobs ▶

Subscribe

Choose the way you would like to access the latest news and developments in your field.

Subscribe to E&T