Turkey goes for cutting edge solar technology

Photo credit: First Solar.
By Anders Lorenzen
While foreign affairs and national security issues are continuing to dominate events in Turkey, solar is quietly advancing in the Middle Eastern powerhouse.

The US solar developer First Solar has won the contract to deliver 160 megawatts (MW) of solar capacity in Turkey. The order was placed by the two Turkish energy companies, Basariarge Enerji A.S. and Zorlu Enerji.

The solar panels used for the project will be Series 4 thin-film modules developed by First Solar, and they are expected to be delivered in late 2016, while the projects are estimated to come online during 2017. According to First Solar, their Series 4 thin-film modules are especially beneficial in warmer climates. This is because, at temperatures above 25°C, their modules produce more energy than competing solar modules, due to a superior temperature coefficient. They say that this proven performance advantage provides stronger plant performance in high-temperature climates. This is because more than 90% of a plant’s electricity generation will occur when module temperatures are above 25°C—and in this instance, the modules have a proven performance advantage. As a result of this, power plants produce up to 9% more annual energy than competing power plants with the same nameplate capacity.

According to Georges Antoun, who is First Solar’s Chief Commercial Officer, these are just the latest Turkish energy companies which have opted to go for solar. George Antoun comments: “Zorlu Enerji and Basariarge Enerji join a fast growing list of Turkish energy companies that benefit from the tangible upside that First Solar’s energy yield advantage delivers in the country. These agreements confirm assessments that solar energy in general, and our technology in particular, is the right response to Turkey’s energy security challenges – reliably delivering cost-competitive electricity that addresses an immediate need. They also reaffirm our belief in the sustainability of Turkey’s solar energy market.”

Due to the company’s high level of confidence in the Turkish solar market, they have since 2014 had an office in Istanbul. And they have so far delivered solar capacity exceeding 300 MW, which they say makes them Turkey’s leading solar producer. George Antoun claimed that their track record in the country proved the trust which their customers have put in them and their module technology.

Even as the security situation in Turkey remains tense, following an attempted military coup and a series of terrorist attacks and the presence of IS, solar is seen as a positive response to Turkey’s energy security challenges. Turkey might finally begin to harness some of their huge potential in this clean energy technology.

Categories: energy, Tech for Climate, Turkey

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7 replies »

  1. Installing 2 MW ground mounted solar power project in India. Needs cheaper EPC & funds. Foreign contractor also invited.


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