A boost for solar power innovations
Bright Minds Challenge, a program aimed at scaling up projects in renewable energy innovations in China, has been launched to tap into the nation’s solar power market.
Royal DSM, a global company that deals with health, nutrition and materials, on Dec 13 signed a contract with the National Center of Supervision and Inspection on Solar Photovoltaic Products Quality (CPVT) to jointly promote the program and encourage enterprises, institutions of higher education, research institutions and individuals to contribute to the renewable energy and solar photovoltaic sectors in China.
The Bright Minds Challenge is a global movement that strives to promote innovation in renewable energy, specifically in solar and energy storage fields. Everyone is welcome to take part in the movement and members of the public are encouraged to get involved by helping find scientists with possible solutions, before voting for the innovations they think are the most promising.
“The Bright Minds Challenge hopes to identify and help accelerate the scaling of solutions for 100 percent renewable energy — focusing on solar and energy storage,” said Oscar Goddijn, vice-president of DSM advanced surfaces.
“This is very much aligned to the local government’s energy strategy focus, which was outlined by Premier Li Keqiang at the National Energy Commission Meeting to actively promote energy consumption and savings so as to better support the sustainable and stable development of the Chinese economy.”
According to the contract, CPVT will join a global consortium led by Royal DSM that will provide the winning projects of the Bright Minds Challenge with incubation support that includes commercial, technical and mentoring assistance to help scientists scale up their solutions as quickly as possible.
The consortium includes companies such as Accenture, Greentown Labs, Solarcentury, SolarAid, Sungevity, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship of the University of Oxford.
According to Wu Jianguo, director of CPVT, there is great market potential in China’s solar power sector, but it currently faces bottlenecks in costs and storage solutions. He believes that the program can help to address these issues.
“Those involved in the Bright Minds Challenge are institutions and enterprises that are experts in this field and are dedicated to the incubation of 100 percent renewable energy projects. This is a great opportunity for scientific talents in China to tap into.”
China has in recent years been actively promoting the development in energy transformation. Last year, China surpassed Germany as the world’s largest generator of solar power, with its installed PV capacity reaching 43 GW (gigawatt). Wu added that the country will increase its capacity to about 75 GW this year.
Visitors take photos of an installation called The Giant Dandelion during Lumieres Shanghai, a lighting festival organized in cooperation with the Festival of Lights Lyon, a renowned annual event in France. Lumieres Shanghai kicked off at The Hub (Hongqiao Tiandi) on Dec 8 and features five lighting installations created by local and foreign artists.