India's government seems to be taking adequate interest in furthering the scope of solar energy in the country beyond installations and hence has invited project proposals from stakeholders to conduct in-depth research.
- MNRE is looking for project proposals to conduct research and development on solar PV and solar thermal energy technologies in India
- Research topics range from solar PV glass recycling, development of high efficiency perovskite solar cell on single and multi-crystalline silicon substrate to development of grid tied inverter and PV based thermal storage systems for refrigeration purposes, among others
- It is expecting industries, start-ups, research and development laboratories, organizations or institutions in research, development and demonstration of solar energy to submit their proposals
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The Indian Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has invited project proposals for research, development and demonstration in solar energy that exhibits the government’s view of solar PV as an industry that holds opportunities galore.
The areas of research range from development of
- grid tied inverters,
- hybrid inverters with capacity of up to 500 KVA,
- high efficiency perovskite solar cells on single and multi-crystalline silicon substrates, photovoltaic based thermal storage systems for refrigeration purposes, among others.
- Segregation of different components of PV modules at the end of their working life,
- recycling of glass.
Industries, start-ups, and research and development laboratories, organizations or institutions in research, development and demonstration of solar energy are welcome to submit their proposals, according to the ministry’s official statement.
India is among the top 3 global solar markets and aims to install 100 GW of solar PV capacity by 2022 under its National Solar Mission (NSM). In April 2019, MNRE issued a concept note for the effective disposal of solar PV module and glass containing antimony, a harmful chemical and solar PV glass recycling. But with no recycling facilities in the country for solar panels with antimony containing glass (SPACG), the ministry suggested a number of regulatory interventions that may be considered to deal with the situation.
While the government is working on ensuring the quality of products used for solar installations, there isn’t a concrete plan in place for what happens to the modules once their operational period comes to an end. An April 2019 report by Bridge to India pointed out the need for India to have a policy framework with infrastructure readiness to deal with massive solar PV waste that it estimates to grow to around 1.8 million tons by 2050 (see 1.8mn Tons Solar Module Waste In India By 2050).