Photovoltaic Systems and Grid Integration
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Worldwide consumption of electricity is expected to nearly double over the next two-and-a-half decades. International Energy Agency (IEA) predicts that meeting this demand for power will require over 5,000 GW of new electricity generating capacity (including replacement capacity) at a cost of over $5 trillion. The new plants will require an additional $6 trillion worth of additional infrastructure, making electric power an $11 trillion market over the next 25 years. The search for new generation technologies is accelerating. Photovoltaics (PV) converts light directly to electricity via solar cells, solid-state semiconductor devices free of moving parts, costly fuel requirements, and harmful emissions. Solar-electric technology is extremely modular, allowing it to be quickly deployed at or near the point of consumption, minimizing transmission losses and even providing electricity in regions that lack centralized power stations and their requisite distribution systems. This modularity makes PV attractive in industrialized and developing nations alike. Furthermore, the cleanliness and environmental friendliness of PV make it an attractive technology for meeting the challenges of global electricity demand growth while simultaneously satisfying requirements for reduced emissions. In the presentation, the status and basic features of the PV technology will be presented along with outlook for its wider implementation in the near future.