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Solar One Produces First “Made In Bahrain” Solar Panel

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Solar One is proud to present the first photo voltaic (PV) solar panel made in Bahrain. This marks the start of an exciting era for solar power generation in Bahrain. Solar One offers real and cost-effective alternatives to power generation. Bahrain enjoys a year-round sun and hence a capability of sustainable power generation. Manufacturing solar panels stakes Bahrain’s claim as a pioneer of innovation in the region. This puts Bahrain at the forefront of the global solar industry. Our facility’s manufacturing capacity is 60,000 panels per year. This equals 15 megawatts of power. We are excited to begin putting power back into the hands of the people.

Solar One’s PV panels are made from top quality regionally sourced materials. High-quality cells especially imported from Taiwan. Our manufacturing process arranges 60 cells along a panel in-house, making one 1.6mx0.99m panel. One panel generates 250 Watts. This is the standard industry size. Every cell and every panel is put through a rigorous quality control process. This ensures that they pass international standards which guarantee trouble-free and long-life operation. Panels are custom built to fit solar power networks from 1 to 350 Watts. Panels can be seamlessly connected to a wide range of solar power grids.

Solar One’s panels are very competitively priced. Their delivered costs in Bahrain is comparable to the FOB prices of China or India. This makes them Bahrain’s most cost effective renewable energy solution. Solar One is eager to connect with distributors, dealers, resellers and installers in the region. We look forward to making solar power an accessible alternative renewable power resource.

Solar One is moving full speed ahead, manufacturing PV panels with automated manufacturing workflow. Automation ensures consistent high quality panels.

For a small, 8 panel, 2000 Watt solar power system, the approximate cost of the panels is BD480. This generates a monthly average of 289kWh effecting savings of approximately BD8 per month. This adds up to more than BD100 annually. A 100 panel system generating 25,000 Watts will cost approximately BD6,000. This generates a total of 3614kWh per month generating savings of over BD1,200 per year. Savings calculations use the rate of 28fils per kWh. This is the rate on businesses and non-Bahrainis when the energy subsidies are removed.

“We are pleased to be in-line with the government’s vision of the use of sustainable energy. We look forward to working closely with the EWA to promote solar energy to the benefit of our kingdom. Our first year targeted production of 15 Mega watts will undoubtedly have a positive effect on solar power users.” – Rami Khalifeh, Solar One

How do I Store by Solar Energy? Understanding the Solar Battery Pack

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We’ve explained how Solar Energy works in a previous post, but what actually happens when Solar Panels harvest energy?

Once the Solar Panels have harvested energy, it needs somewhere to go. This is where your solar battery pack comes in. The battery is the store of the system. It contains your harvested energy for utilization.

You may choose to utilise the harvested energy immediately when solar energy is plentiful (great for summer months). You can also store energy for use down the line. The battery pack of your system can be used as an energy deposit box, saving energy for later utilization. Having a well working solar battery pack enables you to keep your building powered year round.

Batteries act as a bank for your solar energy. Once the sun’s rays are converted into electricity, your batteries receive a charge. Any power used in your building comes from these batteries. If you’re using a lot of power, your batteries will keep receiving electricity to charge. Once these batteries are fully charged, your system stops taking in energy. This is important so that your circuit does not get overloaded.

Solar Panel - Solar One - Solar Battery - Inverter - BahrainFirst off its important to understand that the energy being generated from your solar panels in known as Direct Current (DC) and needs to be converted to Alternating Current (AC) which is suitable to use at home and office.

Solar One creates Photo Voltaic panels that are customizable to fit different sized systems. With this in mind, finding the right battery type for your power requirements is needed to ensure a good fit.

There are a few different types of batteries. For kitchen appliances for instance, you’ll probably need a 12-volt DC battery. However, this is too small to power a building.

A good fit with Solar One panels would be an inverter battery system. These can convert 12, 24 or 48 Direct Current battery voltage into a 120V AC. This can operate larger household appliances such as your electric stove, fridge and TV.

You should ensure that your battery is the appropriate size to fit your solar powered system’s needs. It is essential for your batteries to be able to handle the energetic output of your system. Your batteries need to be up to storing the correct amount of energy.

Talk to your solar system dealer and find a good fit. Using too large of a battery is ineffective. Using too small of a battery is dangerous. Find a happy medium.

Solar One’s Photo Voltaic panels can last up to two decades with minimal maintenance. This is not the case with your system’s batteries. Regular maintenance is required, and timely replacement is needed to ensure safety.

Store your batteries in a safe, closed off location that is both well ventilated and non metallic. Always check your batteries for wear and tear, and replace at the first sign of damage.

Finding a good battery system to store said power is an essential part of your energy equation.

 

What Dust means for Your Solar PV Panels’ Performance?

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Dust - effect - solar - performance - solar one -bahrain

On average Bahrain enjoys 8 months of sunny days – but that does come with its fair share of dust weather. As a desert island, we are constantly surrounded by sand and dust.

We take steps to avoid being sandblasted. We coat our cars in protective gel before road trips. We also keep windows closed, and stay inside during dust storms. But, our PV solar panels need the protection too. Dust and other elements such as bird droppings, leaves and sand affect how your panels work – and even though our panels are made to work in extreme difficult weather conditions, care must be taken.

Solar panels left to accumulate dirt end up much less effective. Dust promotes dust, and sticky or dirty panels are no exception to this. Our Solar One panels are set to last for up to 25 years with minimal maintenance. Regular cleaning falls under this minimal maintenance.

If neglected and uncleaned; your panels will without a doubt be prone to damage above any usual wear and tear. Some studies put dust as a culprit of decreasing solar capacity of up to 32% over 8 months. Regular cleaning can save you one third of wasted energy production! Seasonal changes are sure to effect this too. With the minimal rainfall we see in Bahrain that could act as a relief to dust, you’ll need to step up the cleaning schedule.

Luckily, our solar PV panels are easy to clean. You can clean your panels yourself, or have someone do them for you. Cleaning your panels takes minimal effort. This ensures that they are working at their best capacity.

If you opt to clean your panels yourself, you need to occasionally wipe them down. You can do this just like you would a windshield. A sponge and soapy water with some rags to dry will do just fine. After particularly dusty days or sandstorms, a wipe down is especially important.

You can check if your panels need cleaning in one of two ways.

First, you can physically check them:

Go outside and have a look if they need cleaning. If so, you’ll know – they’ll be dusty. This is probably the best especially after a dust storm.

Second, you can buy a monitor:

These help to check for dust that has accumulated over time. Monitors are available that check your panel’s output capacity. They keep tabs on how much electricity they are producing. These monitors will allow for a comparison over time. First, you need to know your panel’s baseline electricity production level.  When the production level dips below the baseline, you’ll know it’s time to clean your panel. This is a good option as you are able to consistently check your panel’s production levels.

In Bahrain, dust is prevalent every day. These monitors allow you to keep an eye on dust build up and clean your panels accordingly.

Solar monitoring systems also provide other valuable information. You can monitor how much energy you’ve produced, see how much CO2 emissions you’ve saved and, importantly, how much money you’ve saved.

Installing solar panels is the renewable way to power homes and businesses. Taking the time to clean your panels of dust and debris ensures that they work to their highest capacity.

In a dusty country like Bahrain, regular panel cleanings are essential. Solar One’s PV panels are built to last, with minimal upkeep and maintenance. This makes sure that you get the most for what you are paying and your panels are working at highest efficiency.

Living in the Sun Belt : The Solar Power Potential for the Middle East

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Global Sun Belt - Solar - Middle East - SolarOne - Bahrain

The Global Sun Belt is the area around the world which gets the most sun per day, month and year. These sun rich areas are often hot deserts.Global - Sun - Belt - Solar - Middle East

Living in the Sun Belt means regular, streaming sunlight. Countries in the Sun Belt can experience extremely hot summers and little rain.

Sun Belt country Kuwait has seen the hottest ever temperature recorded on Earth. 54 degrees Celsius! That is a whole lot of heat coming from a whole lot of sun.

The Global Sun Belt is the area where the most solar power stands to be harvested. By 2030, the 66 countries in the global Sun Belt could reach an installed solar PV capacity of 405 GW. This could provide electricity to around 300 million people. It makes perfect sense to centre the world’s solar energy plants in our sunny back yards. So, how have we done so far?

Let’s take a look at solar developments around the Middle East. We can see precisely where solar power is heading in the Middle East.


By 2030, the 66 countries in the Global Sun Belt could reach an installed solar PV capacity of 405 GW.

Saudi Arabia is already known as an energy power house. What it has in oil reserves dwarfs those in countries around it. But, oil is non renewable. Once it’s gone, it’s gone. The Saudi Arabian Oil Company has realized this. They have expressed an interest in developing solar energy as a renewable alternative. And why not? Their deserts are a fertile ground for harvesting the sun’s power.

Forbes magazine describes it best. When it comes to power, Saudi Arabia is the Saudi Arabia of solar energy and Riyadh has been developing Saudi’s domestic solar power. They strive towards achieving economies of scale. This would boost solar energy up in the power markets. Economies of scale makes solar power a viable alternative to oil and natural gas.

The United Arab Emirates is all about style. This translates directly to their feats of modern solar architecture. An example of their panache at work is The Vertical Village. This is a real estate development which self sustains its power through a “skirt” of solar panels.  Masdar is the UAE’s renewable energy producer. They are involved in projects both domestically in the UAE as well as throughout the Middle East. Investment is well underway to keep the UAE at the top of their solar game.

Now let’s take a look at energy importers.

Noor-Solar-Complex

Noor Solar Complex – Morocco

Countries can end up spending a huge amount on importing fuel. Wouldn’t it make sense to look at alternatives? This is what Morocco and Jordan are now contemplating. Morocco imports about 90% of its energy.

Now, it is looking at solar power as a sustainable, local alternative. They are taking this idea and putting it to huge amounts of use.

Morocco is building the world’s largest solar power plant. The Noor Solar Complex uses concentrated solar technology. This generates heat and powers turbines to supply energy. Their goal by 2025 is to use solar power to account for half of its electricity production. Afterwards, they plan on becoming a solar exporter. So from energy importer to energy exporter, Morocco stands to completely overhaul its economy.

All using the power of the Sun Belt.

Jordan imports more than 95 percent of its energy. This takes up about 16% of the country’s GDP.  To recoup these costs, they have been making efforts to diversify their energy portfolio. Moving from importing oil and gas to producing solar energy has become a priority.

Recently, they have also added wind turbine fields. Jordan is also looking at generating nuclear energy. It has set a lofty goal for 2018. They aim for renewable energy sources to account for 20% of their generation capacity. Being in a prime Sun Belt location, we think that solar power will play a major role there.

Being in the Global Sun Belt means so much more than hiding from the summer heat. Innovations are underway to turn the Sun Belt into a global source of renewable power.

We at Solar One are incredibly excited, we aim at placing Bahrain on the Solar Power map – this is truly the time to be Putting Power Back In The Hands Of The People.

In the Middle East : 5 Solar Architecture Projects that will Amaze

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Blogpost - Solar Architecture - Middle East - Solar Power

Solar Architecture is leading the way in the Middle East. This sun rich area has become a hot spot sustainable, solar design at work.

With reports forecasting approximately 4 gigawatts of solar power projects planned across the Middle East for 2016,  developers, architects and engineers are harnessing the power of solar.  Sustainable Architecture is becoming the next thing to look out for, and solar is being incorporated into some amazing feats of modern architecture.

Here are 5 solar architecture projects that amaze us and are true examples of the potential for more Solar Architecture in the Middle East.

1. Dubai Vertical Village – United Arab Emirates

vertical village dubai-bahrain- solar panel- sustainable architecture

Dubai Vertical Village

The architects at Graft Lab have created the incredible Vertical Village.  This is a commercial, residential and entertainment development. The Vertical Village uses a Solar powered “skirt” to harness it’s energy. The village’s solar roof emulates a leaf. It has “veins” which break the solar field up into serviceable units. They also transport energy back to the building. It is used to provide hot water and power for air conditioning. There is an entertainment district, with shops, cinemas and restaurants. The north strip of the development is home to hotels and residential towers. In trusted Dubai style, the Vertical Village has it all – Solar Architecture excellence!

 

sustainable architecture- bahrain - solar

Al Meisan Tower

2. Al Meisan Tower – United Arab Emirates

Also in Dubai, the Almeisan Tower is designed by architect Robert Perry.  This stunning tower will provide its own energy, as well as enough energy for the rest of the Za’abeel Park! 224 heliostatic polished mirrors on the top platform track the sun.  These reflect the beams of light into a central collector at the tower’s tip.  This magnified sunlight is harnessed and used to generate steam to power a turbine! Almeisan, is the Arabic name for one of the brightest starts in the Gemini constellation. It is a fitting name.  The tower’s defining feature is the sunlight that beams out from its tip. A beacon for Dubai and for sustainable energy.

 

Kuwait Airport- Solar- Middle East

Kuwait International Airport

3. Kuwait International Airport

Architects at Foster + Partners  have designed the new Kuwait International Airport. With this, they are aiming for the for the LEED Gold Sustainability Award. This amazing airport features concrete pillars that cool and protect the airport’s interior. They do this by providing thermal mass. The roof is a canopy fitted with PV solar panels. 13 million passengers will flow through this airport. They will be able to see sustainability implemented with style and grace.  Initial designs call for 3 wings of the airport ,each a mile long. They connect with a grand 82 foot dome. There will even be cooling waterfalls by the baggage claim! There is flexibility in the design for large scale expansion. In the future, Kuwait international Airport will be able to accommodate 50 million passengers.

4. King Abdullah University of Science and Technology – Kingdom of Saudi ArabiaSaudi- solar-University KAU

King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Jeddah features two solar towers. These use the sun and prevailing winds to create a passive pressure difference. This keeps a continuous breeze blowing across the shaded courtyards. The towers feature two “skins”. The outer is completely transparent. This allows the maximum amount of sunlight to pass through to the inner “skin”. The inner skin consists of a highly absorbent tinted glass. This gathers up solar energy and maximizes hot air in the tower.  As hot air rises, it exits the top of the tower. This is then replaced with cooler air from the courtyard.

This technology keeps the campus courtyard comfortable and cool for more than 75% of the year. The roof of the KAUST building has been designed to incorporate solar panels. These work to provide the entire campus with power and hot water on demand. An amazing example of solar energy at work.

ABC Mall- Lebanon-solar

ABC Mall Achrafieh – Lebanon

5. ABC Achrafieh Mall – Lebanon

The ABC Achrafieh Mall in Beirut is paving the way for sustainability. They installed the largest solar PV plant in Lebanon on its rooftop. This covers up to 4000 square meters and can power the ABC department store. This is equal to supplying 500 houses with power.

This is an incredible way for a busy mall to cut down on the need for electricity. At the same time, harnessing the sun’s renewable energy. We consider this a true pioneering approach to sustainable architecture and power saving at a time where an uninterrupted source of electricity and power are a luxury in Lebanon.

 

Architectural projects like these are why Solar One came to being. We believe that sustainable architecture and specifically harnessing Solar Power is no longer a hope in the future but is very much our present. By manufacturing these panels locally right here in Bahrain,  and competing with international prices, we will soon see Bahrain and more Middle East Projects on other lists of Sustainable Architecture.

If you wish to incorporate solar panels in your large or small architectural designs, keep an eye out for our distributors and contact us today.