November 19, 2009

Has photovoltatic solar reached grid parity?

It looks like it has.

Daytime grid power sells for more than $.20 per KWH in Southern California. PV has to sell for less than $4 per peak watt to beat that price.

Well, First Solar has been selling it's panels for less than $2.50 per Wp - with Balance of System costs (wiring, inverter, structural supports, installation) that allows installation near the magic $4/Wp.

Now we hear that panel pricing has fallen by more than 50% in the last year:

"China Sunergy’s average selling price of $1.32 per watt was down from $3.48 a year earlier and $1.44 in the second quarter. Wafer costs declined to 87 cents per watt from 96 cents the previous quarter. "

That should allow full installations below the $4/Wp parity point, at least on the large industrial/commercial roofs for which PV works best.

Here's the source.

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