Speeding the Energy Transition
Jan. 6, 2023

Clean Power Hour LIVE! - January 5, 2023

Clean Power Hour LIVE! - January 5, 2023

On the weekly clean power news and views, we bring you the latest cleantech and clean energy news,  thought leaders, and innovators. Our motto is ‘Speeding the Energy Transition!’

This week John Weaver and I discuss,
1. Form Energy has a battery facility for construction coming to WV
2. Guy tried to kill his family by driving his Tesla over a 250-foot cliff - 100% lived
3. USPS to deploy 66,000 EVs by 2028 - moving toward 100% EVs
4. Cool installation of floating solar - look at thE rolling mechanisms
5. Two solar cell record efficiencies
6. Price of polysilicon down 54% since August
7. New York announces 4.7 GW of new energy storage, ~25 GWh worth, to be added by 2030 - would cover 18-25% peak demand in summer/winter
8. 8 TWh globally of battery gigafactory in the pipeline now
9. By 2030, 1 TWh of EV battery manufacturing capacity in the USA
10. DOE funds the hydrogen project

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The Clean Power Hour hosts and cleantech professionals Tim Montague and John Weaver (the Commercial Solar Guy) bring you the latest solar, wind, and energy storage news.

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The Clean Power Hour is produced by the Clean Power Consulting Group and created by Tim Montague. Please subscribe on your favorite audio platform and on Youtube: bit.ly/cph-sub | www.CleanPowerHour.com | contact us by email: CleanPowerHour@gmail.com | Speeding the energy transition!

Corporate sponsors who share our mission to speed the energy transition are invited to check out https://www.cleanpowerhour.com/support/
Twice a week we
highlight the tools, technologies, and innovators that are making the clean energy transition a reality - on Apple,

The Clean Power Hour is produced by the Clean Power Consulting Group and created by Tim Montague. Please subscribe on your favorite audio platform and on Youtube: bit.ly/cph-sub | www.CleanPowerHour.com | contact us by email:  CleanPowerHour@gmail.com | Speeding the energy transition!

Transcript
Tim Montague:

All right, we are live. Welcome to the Clean Power Hour, January 5 2023. Welcome to the show, John Weaver commercial solar guy,

John Weaver:

Timothy, it's a new year, man to New Year. So you got to make sure you don't say 2022 anymore. I did sign several checks with 2022 that I had to rip up. And but you know, I think you got a week or two of being allowed to make that mistake before you have to work on it. So yeah, that's myself

Tim Montague:

there and the intro, I'm bummed that we didn't get to do a news roundup a year, you know, a New Year's round up, but we're gonna, we're gonna give our listeners a brief round up of what we thought were some of the highlights of 2022 and then dive into some current news. You've got a great story on storage in California. Sorry, storage in New York State. But what would you look back to 2022? What What are, what are two or three things that stand out for you?

John Weaver:

Well, I'm stealing one from you, because I think it's the same one for me. And that's the signing of the IRA. And I mean, that that sets everything for the next decade in the United States. So that's number one. Number two is that global solar capacity deployed, was somewhere in the 270 gigawatt range, which blew away every projection. Everybody was in the 160 to 180. To know, everybody was in the 200 to 220 range, even 180 to 220. And, you know, we ended up like 50% higher than everybody projected. And I guess maybe number three is the continued expansion of energy storage. And we actually have a slight reference to it. Eight terawatt hours as of a week or two ago from our friend Simon in the UK at benchmark materials. And those are my three, deploy

Tim Montague:

eight terawatt hours, over what period of time what what is that relevant to?

John Weaver:

Oh, okay, so by the year 2020 32 ish. The current manufacturing facility pipeline for batteries, mostly to be used in EVs is currently eight terawatt hours a year of manufacturing capacity.

Tim Montague:

That's big number dude. And as we were discussing in the pre show, you can multiply that or you divide that by four to get the terawatts of capacity, right.

John Weaver:

Yes, because he talks in terawatt hours. So if we're talking terawatts,

Tim Montague:

so two terawatts versus

John Weaver:

and yeah, but these are mostly EVs. So the equations a lot difference, you know, like, you know, like an Eevee has a charging capacity. That's, well, it's a different equation when we're talking EVs, you know, capacity versus hours. But yes.

Tim Montague:

So those are my three examples. So anyway, yeah, the IRA, or IRA, I can't stop saying IRA. It blew everything out of the water. It's, it's, it's now a major forcing function for reshoring and onshoring manufacturing in the US, including batteries and solar panels. And I'm sure, wind turbines, you know, all of those things were happening now. It's just like pouring gasoline on those things. And, and this is very good for cleaning jobs. growing the economy, of course, Greening the Grid is so many so many add on benefits. And, you know, America has has been a powerhouse in manufacturing, we forgot that for a few decades. We offshored it, and it was an economic disaster. So kudos to the Biden administration for getting that across the finish line. And it's just awesome to see all the the announcements of evey manufacturing also, right.

John Weaver:

Yeah, I didn't share this one on the dock. But I saw a spreadsheet, a PDF that was put out by a Defense Department or Aragon, one of them. And they said that in the next few years, six years, maybe the United States will have nearly one terawatt hour Have evey battery manufacturing capacity per year? That's the US alone. One terawatt hour. That's pretty cool. And it's a relatively short distance. In fact, PV magazine covered it because I retweeted that one of our guys grabbed it. But uh, let's see if I can grab it, but by then, you know, one terawatt hour per year, one terawatt annually, rustbelt states in the Midwest. Let's see. So here's the article real quick. Per Aragon. They're the ones that put out the document. And, you know, a terawatt hour of manufacturing capacity, by what year by 2030. So there it is. So that's that's gonna be huge. I mean, in the belt goes from like Michigan, you could see some of it in Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, then there's a bunch in looks like Alabama, and nothing in Georgia. Well, maybe something in Georgia, but then South Carolina, a couple in Texas, of course, California. But there's just like this chunk, this stripe in the not the Atlantic east, but the east. And it's it's just a whole bunch of capacity. In fact, maybe I should see if I could share this chart so that everybody can see. Oh, you got share. You've already got something up. So but yeah, oh, yeah.

Tim Montague:

Put up trigger shots newsletter, we can we can put it up after this. Yeah, this was this was definitely one of the highlights for me. Jigga wrote a newsletter, which sounds like it's going to be a monthly thing now called accelerating climate wealth. Check it out on LinkedIn. That's the main platform, I guess that he's promoting this on. And, you know, what he points out is that there's a lot of good things happening in the US now. Hydrogen green hydrogen is being made in Utah. And that was a 500 million loan guarantee that they made. So the happy news for me really is that we have someone like Jigar Shah in the DOE, who's now driving the loan program in office, which was basically asleep under the previous administration, doing a whole lot of nothing. But he also then points out that we're getting into all the metals related to batteries, this company called sera Dahlia sera technologies, and then the GM L G Partnership, which was also a loan program, funded project, obviously for evey electrification Evie batteries. And my jigger points out that there's a study from Princeton, Princeton's netzero, America estimates that we need $300 billion more deployed annually through 2050. That's a total of $10 trillion. And that sounds like a lot of money. But it's a totally doable amount of money. And it's, you know, it's just so good for the economy and Americans, right, it's a it's a both and this is going to be good for consumers, pocketbooks, and for job creation, and it's and and good for capitalists. So so check out chiggers newsletter, what's the what's the origin story you want to share? And, you know, it's on the dock now.

John Weaver:

Yeah, moved to the dock. It's next. It's right below the New York story. And they got a nice chart there. I liked the showing where the battery factors factories aren't we've seen a version of this on the show prior. But that's one terawatt hour facilities. You know, there's just like this neat little stripe headed, so do south a little further. Keep going. I mean, that's the list of them. Right there.

Tim Montague:

Yeah. Nice, man. Right there. Yeah.

John Weaver:

And you can just see Indiana

Tim Montague:

capacity in North America by 2030. Wow.

John Weaver:

Yep. And I think the number was actually like 998 gigawatts or something. So rounded up to a nice clean terawatt. Yeah. That's I mean, there's a lot going on and yeah, a lot going on. Actually, so the coloring Oh, so that's interesting. So the orange.is A Evie assembly location, the coloring represents capacity within those states all right. So I get that chart better now. So so the entire

Tim Montague:

the shading is the battery capacity and the dots are the are the Eevee manufacturing, right?

John Weaver:

Yes, sir. Yes, sir. Yeah,

Tim Montague:

It's an obviously there's a correlation

John Weaver:

you want the big heavy thing to meet the near where its end home is exactly

Tim Montague:

right yeah yeah, it is a it's a stripe right down the middle part of the country what we call the middle part even though it's not the geographic middle.

John Weaver:

So I you know, from a business standpoint you know, you don't have to be the battery manufacturer, nor do you have to be the car manufacturer, the car salesperson. You know, there's an old adage that I like and I you know, I you don't when there's a gold rush, sell pickaxe and what is going to be the pickaxe of the battery? Evie world what are the pick axes out there? And there's gonna be 1000 pick axes because there's there's pick axes there's there's those bowls that they shake the gold out of that I'm sure there's they're selling Levi's, you know selling jeans. They're selling food to these people. There's housing. What are the pick axes of the Evie industry? I would love to hear some smart person tell us hey, I got these 10 e v pickaxe ideas?

Tim Montague:

Well, it's always like mangrove lithium that was on the show they have a technology for basically separating lithium from raw materials. And

John Weaver:

Redwood who's recycling the batteries? That guy is gonna be a billionaire. He might already be because of Well, yeah, he's gonna be a second billionaire. Recycling the battery second use batteries. Um, you know, there's gonna be 100 pickaxes. And I'm super excited to see those pickaxes. And it's going to be neat. So it's, we're just gonna have a lot of, you know, this is gonna be a new thing. This is, you know, this is, we already have these industries in the United States, it just so happens that they make oil, and they make gas and coal. And now, oil, gas and coal is moving to wind turbines, solar modules, batteries, and the mining of the material for those batteries specifically, you know, it's interesting, I've heard about critical materials associated with batteries. But I've not heard about critical materials associated with solar as much, making the modules has been defined as critical. But mining the poly silicon, for some reason has it. And that's interesting to me making the solar cells making the wafers, even maybe making some ingots. But I still haven't heard there hasn't been a hardcore rush into making more polished silicon in the United States. In fact, I don't know if I've seen anybody do it yet. You know, quick, they're talking about expanding the facility in Washington state owned by que sell and Rec. Yeah, but that's it. I haven't heard any other policy silicon pitches. So I don't know maybe maybe it's too far up the the stream. To do that, you know, there's, there's a company in Mississippi, I think Mississippi silicon, who signed the deal with QCL, Heartwell, Harnois, maybe to supply the Washington facility with raw material. But that might be it. So I'm intrigued. I'm wondering if we don't consider that critical, because maybe it's easier to do. But I'm still interested in seeing what's gonna come with poly silicon sounds. Sounds like challenge but the IRA has big time money in there for it, like X dollars per kilogram, you know, I should Ira poly?

Tim Montague:

Well, when you when you google poly silicon manufacturing in the US a story from you. CNN, I want to say chemical and Engineering News, something like that. And it says the US solar industry has a supply problem. China's controlled solar manufacturing puts the sector at risk of disruption. And so I think you have put your finger on something that's important. Right, the vast majority of solar cell manufacturing is in China today. And and that's true of the poly silicon as well. There are a few manufacturers in the US.

John Weaver:

We have had though, a cell and a wafer announcement, one or two each in the US. And first solar sort of makes the whole thing they're different beasts, but they make the whole thing but no poly silicon, you know, other than the expansion of the Washington facility by Honda and

Tim Montague:

hemlock Hemlock has a facility in Michigan

John Weaver:

Is it running? Is it doing anything?

Tim Montague:

Oh, yeah, that's that's, that's for sure. Live. All right. Yeah. So REC is planning to reopen facility in Washington State?

John Weaver:

Yeah, that's that's the Hon one, one. Yeah. And they're expanding it. I think by the end of this year, it's supposed to be open. So the IRA has a tax credit at three bucks per kilogram, for solar grade poly. And right now, the global price is like 25 bucks, 17 bucks. We'll cover an article on that in a moment. But so three bucks is something it's, you know, it, I can see why it's slower, though. You know, if the price of poly silicon a month, three months ago was 40 bucks, knocking off 10% isn't really the kicker. If it's 15 bucks, knocking off three bucks can be something. So so we'll see, we'll see about the poly silicone manufacturing, maybe it's not going to happen in the US. Maybe it just maybe it has to be connected to the cheapest electricity we can find. Because that's really what it is. Making Poly is just very electricity dependent. So we really have to figure out how to do that cheaply and cleanly. I will be writing an article soon, a new standard has been released for and you might be interested in this too. Low Carbon Alliance was involved. Dustin, Dustin, maybe we could get Dustin on our show one day, Dustin Mulvaney. He's the professor outwest. Who, who's part of that. And they officially voted on a new standard for low carbon solar modules. And I got a copy of that the vote was couple weeks ago where they finalize their draft refined the language. And if anybody's making solar module or poly silicon via hydro or nuclear, or solar and wind, you know that's, that's going to be the thing right there.

Tim Montague:

Yeah, and that's and that's the play up there in Washington State, right. They're using hydro, hydro and wind. But yeah, when you go to the ultra low carbon solar lines, you see him luck, you see our AC those are the true poly silicon manufacturers to my knowledge there but but there's a bunch of good solar manufacturers first solar q cells. Norwegian crystals whacker, so large dozen companies I'm not familiar with here, too. But we got to get all these on the show origami solar.

John Weaver:

You should just start cold calling them all one by one.

Tim Montague:

Yeah, I wish I wish I had time to do that. Most of the most of the one on one guests we get come to me now but But anyway, let's talk about let's talk about your story in PV magazine on 25 gigawatt hours of energy storage.

John Weaver:

So the state of New York made a new announcement that they're going to push for an additional 4.7 gigawatts, roughly 25.8 gigawatt hours of energy storage to be deployed by 2030. It's a significant volume. I did some rough math. And this is there's a flaw in this math. But today, if that capacity were deployed, it would cover 18% of the summer peak, and 25% of the winter demand peak. And these are the peaks. So the real number is much lower. And that's significant. Like he can cover a quarter of the grids needs by batteries by 2030. Now, the reason that number is off is because as we move forward, there'll be more electrification, there'll be cars, there'll be heat pumps, so the peak demand number will change and go up, you know, 10% 20%, but it's a huge capacity. And here's the volume, the dark blue is four hour, and the light blue is eight hour capacity. So by 2030, there's a tiny bit of eight hour and a majority of four hour and then you can see it growing, they're gonna have 17 gigs, which is like 50 ish gig gigawatt hours by the year 2050. And that's a lot of that's a lot of batteries. And that's, that's their goal. So this is, you know, just part of New York State, really leading the nation in terms of solar and batteries and everything. And so it's, it's pretty cool. So I just thought this is a great report. They came out with a couple of reports at near the end of the year. One that and I will cover it later, but one that talks about the electrification of the whole state, and it includes a note that there may be 110 gigs of either wind plus solar or solar. And with full electrification this document if you get near the bottom, I think I show a chart showing 59 gigawatts of solar by 2050. But not that much in wind. And so somewhere else, I saw another document showing closer to 110 gigs of clean, and maybe maybe it is maybe it's 59 gigs of clean of solar by 2050. So that means New York, who is aiming for 10 gigs, by the end of the decade, has a lot of growth coming going forward. And, you know, as long as we're still alive, because by 2030, I'm going to be like 50. So I'm gonna be Executive Managing the sales, guys.

Tim Montague:

I mean, as you point out here, there's a lot of peaker plants that are running at very low capacity. And these are going to get replaced with batteries because peaker plants are very expensive to maintain. And, and so the juice they produces is very expensive. And and so it's it's a nice economic model right to replace these one 250 megawatt facilities. With with batteries, and the train is rolling, either these are these already announced projects. It looks like writing tables, bookstore data center program awarded projects. These are 10 to 1500 50 megawatt projects. I'm just looking at the locations I'm not I'm not familiar enough with the counties. But you see,

John Weaver:

so you New York, Erie County is up. Yeah, those bottom ones Kings County kings and queens. That's the city. Erie, Wyoming. All sir orange, green. Those are all upstate.

Tim Montague:

Sir Saratoga was upstate.

John Weaver:

Areas way, way, way off sea.

Tim Montague:

Green is is kind of mid. That's Hudson Valley. Right? Yeah,

John Weaver:

Catskill that's just north of the city. But if you're in the city, that's way upstate. If you're from upstate, that's in the city.

Tim Montague:

Right. Because city, like Illinois that way.

John Weaver:

Yeah, city city people live in Catskill. They'll take the train in Pekin and Catskill, Poughkeepsie, White Plains a lot. You know, but so so if you're there is like, yeah, you're one of those people from the city. You get that city accent. So New York's coming hard man, New York is a state to watch. And it's a state to watch, not only for us professionals, but it's a state to watch if you are a regulator, because New York can teach you how to do your state in an economic intelligent manner. I mean, they got some smart people in New York. New York State should draft me to join them as a as a citizen. And I will join there smart people, I don't know if I would get into the draft queue. And I have to get into the ancillary draft because I got so many smart people already. So I'll be on the I'll be on the triple A team maybe. And still get paid well, and you're living in New York state. So in a bad place. Wonderful place.

Tim Montague:

We are already working in New York state. So building there. Why do you why do you have to move there?

John Weaver:

I'll just say I'm from New York. Yes. Say that with a little. Make sure everybody knows. That's why everybody will hate me, because I'll let them know. And then I'll tell them I'm a Yankee fan as I got my Boston head on, just to jab them a little more. You know, I think the Yankees and the Cowboys are both the most light and hated sports teams in the United States. Because they went too much and too many fans. Yeah, I think the Cowboys are considered the most popular sports team. In the US. I'm not exactly sure I don't fall in love sports, but I know the Yankees and cowboys are like number one. Number two, they flip flop. The Lakers are probably number three. But I don't know if basketball has the same following as football and baseball. It might be number one, actually. Hey, I know. I follow more sports. I know. I know. Too much work too much solar work. Eat watch, drink more beers. Watch more football. That's good life.

Tim Montague:

I just watched my friends feud over Cardinals. Cubs. That's the feud here in Illinois. That's good one. But

John Weaver:

wait. Illinois people care about what's going on Missouri.

Tim Montague:

That's right in central and Southern Illinois everyone's a Cardinals fan. But here in central Illinois, there's a lot of Cubs fans here too. We're halfway between St. Louis and Chicago. So,

John Weaver:

so the Cardinals fans based on a little bit of dislike of the city people.

Tim Montague:

That's right. People don't like Chicago. There's there's a fair number of people that don't like Chicago.

John Weaver:

That's good. That's funny. I like that.

Tim Montague:

It's the Old City, rural thing. So the St. Louis isn't the city St. Louis is very much a city. It's just a small city.

John Weaver:

By the way, I went to St. Louis this past summer. No two summers ago when I visited you. And the I want to call the gateway. What's it? That thing is cool, dude. The what's it called officially, though? Oh,

Tim Montague:

I don't know. I can tell you the arch.

John Weaver:

The arch arch.

Tim Montague:

Arch. Arch is where the where the elevator twists as it goes up.

John Weaver:

That was there. There's an elevator in it.

Tim Montague:

There's an elevator and you can go up inside the arch. Yeah.

John Weaver:

I guess I gotta go back. I have no idea.

Tim Montague:

You think about it. You start here on the ground, the elevators like this. And then if you if it didn't turn, you'd be upside down when you got to the top of the art so it actually twists.

John Weaver:

I'm going to be absolutely terrified of that. But that sounds so cool. So I guess I got a good reason to come back and visit you again.

Tim Montague:

It's a little claustrophobic. The elevator cars are very small. They see like four people. It's kind of like a funicular. If you've ever been on a funicular,

John Weaver:

but I don't even know what that word means.

Tim Montague:

It's a special kind of rail car slash tram. But it runs on it runs on rails. And they use it to go up steep mountains.

John Weaver:

As well, you would know about that. I would. All right, cool. So we talked about terawatt hours of batteries are all we want

Tim Montague:

from terawatt hours, man Simon horse.

John Weaver:

Simon, of course it is. This is Simon's tweets. I watched his tweet now whenever he does the update. This is my I make sure to bookmark it. And this was his update at the end of the year. There's nothing on the link, just some talk. But this is his 2020 31 capacity. We broke eight gigs, which is eight terawatt hours of manufacturing capacity projected. And of course China still dominates. It's 68%. But North America plus Europe. That's 27 28%. That's not a trivial number. Yeah, that's cool. That's quarter of it. And as we saw, you know, the US has over a terawatt now. So, you know, 13% Let's see if 13 of eight is CFR math checks out here. If let's see what eight times point one terawatt. So yeah, so this number lines up with the number that came out of Aragon, I wonder if he's, he's consulting with them given them info. But, you know, that's that's a terawatt of capacity in Europe and North America, by the by near the end of the decade, and that number is gonna grow probably before the end of the decade. So we might hit that eight terawatts before 2031. But we'll see. But that's just just a cool chart. You know, it's growing fast just like solar is growing and you know, what, our next story will be about a solar growth number. And you know, the see the batteries, the wind and the solar growing is cool. I don't hear as much about the wind capacity manufacturing growing right now, they have some challenges in their industry with profitability, because it's just, it's harder. You know, a lot of its European based it doesn't have the same financial underwriting that the Chinese do for their manufacturing companies and their industrial policy. So we got to we got to see what's how the wind industry is going to scale. But it's it's, it's common, so but the solar industry, man, it's it's right next, you know, batteries are catching up with solar and this year, the solar industry, hit a massive jump and deploying volume. 268 gigawatts is the current estimation from Bloomberg Nef. And, and it's gonna keep growing

Tim Montague:

story all i want for Christmas is 400 gigawatts of solar installed in 2023. That's referring to the Global's?

John Weaver:

Yes, sir, yes, sir. Or or Tim Montague consulting. One or the other?

Tim Montague:

Yes, of course. So, you know, the good news here is that the US I mean, the world had a good year for solar in 2022. Oh, yes, we installed a record amount of solar, the US fell short of anticipated numbers. Correct. And I'm just curious, if you when you think about that, like, why is why are things so different in in Europe and Asia than they are in the US? I don't I don't, I don't quite get it, although maybe, maybe there's more manufacturing in Asia. So they have ready your access, we're getting stuff off the boat, which is stacking in a harbor

John Weaver:

words. That's what the issue is. We had these tariffs that, you know, then the next the oxen lawsuits killed us. So they were first filed, the oxen lawsuits were first filed in 21. And that put a hold on things in 21, and then whacked 22. And then we had so much uncertainty and 21, going into 22, and then for half from 22. So we got all the way through, like, you know, we got through July before Biden said there would be a two year hold on import tariffs. And then we didn't get the commerce position until like November, like late November, early December. So we had tons of the utility scale people. And this is the key driver. So residential solar grew 20 25%. In the United States, residential solar had no fall off, commercial solar stayed flat, utility solar dropped, and the utility solar dropped, because utility scale projects are super sensitive to one to three cents, let alone 10 or 15 cents or 20 cents even. And if there were retroactive tariffs on a utility scale projects, man, there's some bankruptcies happening. So, so what it was all about was oxygen. And oxygen was probably funded by first solar, I hope we don't get sued for me saying that maybe it was funded by some oil interests, it was definitely not funded by the dude, who's that oxygen, man, that company sucks. I hope we interview them, and I get yelled at them. But they're the ones that whacked five to eight gigawatts off of deployed us capacity. I mean, there were some people saying we might get like 3040 gigs at some point. And we ended up with like, 2022, something like that. So this chart right here is my favorite. If you can zoom in on that one just a little bit, it's hard to see the background, maybe I shouldn't have done it light blue. But this chart are projections, because I collect projections from various groups. And these are the projections of the world. And if you look at the end of last year, where the projections were, versus the end of, or the beginning of the end of 21. So the end of two years ago, where the projections were versus the end of last year, you can see not only did the capacity grow, but the projections grew just as much. And so we had a massive change this year and 47% growth versus last year, if we use the Bloomberg numbers, you know, 182 versus 268. That's exponential, that's X S curve stuff, Tim, that's like big time, like, scroll up a tiny bit, a couple to a couple images. So not that one, the next one up. The Boomer bloomer, one, look at that chunk. Look at that one, from 182 to 268, in the 2021 to or the 2021 to 2022. Right in the middle of the chart, where it says 182

Tim Montague:

gigs were deployed and 80 gigawatts jump right over that dude, it's actually bigger

John Weaver:

than Yeah, yeah. Sam out. Yes. It's like we jumped equivalent to what was deployed in 2016. Like we just said, Ah, let's add 216 on top. That's a huge number. And it's impossible to think that we're going to hit it again. But, you know, if you scroll down a tiny bit to the next chart, remember that 268 Number, look at where would Mac has 268 in the year 2029. Like, we just skipped the 2020s Tim, we're like, let's skip all that middle stuff. Even Bloomberg had to 68 and 2028. So something happened this year, and it was China, it was Ukraine. It's trying to do China is pushing solar hard. And the number one reason we should defend ourselves against it is because at some point, China's gonna be like, Okay, we're done with our clean energy goals. Now, let's stick it to the rest of the globe, at least if they're doing it for strategic national security things. And so this year's growth was so massive, and there's going to be people writing stories about it. You know, Bloomberg is going to put out stuff everybody is going to start talking and the analysts the big wigs on the global level, you know, they get paid a lot. They're gonna start talking about this number. They're gonna be like, What the heck happens? And my dream and here's a nice interview. had with Jenny Chase at Bloomberg. Here's three that paragraph right there. You know, is it possible for us to install 400 gigs of modules and 23? Is it even technically possible? Jenny said we could make 500 gigs of modules this year, Tim? I wasn't expecting that number. I was wondering if we could make 400 500 gigs of modules, dude, man, we could maybe maybe hit five 400 gigs this year. I'm not expecting it. I wouldn't put my retirement account on it. But holy crap, man, that's cool. 400 digs? That's like, I don't know, that's just awesome. That takes us on the one terawatt article. I don't know if you remember that. Wrote the alongI article where they said one terawatt deployed per year by like, 2028 29. This puts us halfway there. So that's just, that's just cool. So that's my dream. Tim, if you can help me make that come true, I'd be appreciated.

Tim Montague:

Very much. So well, it's clear that we, as we were discussing in the pre show, we could hit two terawatts in just a couple of years. And, yeah, and then we'll be doing a terawatt a year. By the late 2020s. Yeah,

John Weaver:

yeah. I mean, yeah, so if we hit one terawatt at the beginning of last year, let's say February, that means we deployed, say 250 gigawatts after that, so we got 250. In the books, we need another 750. If we do 400, this year, that puts us at 650. Needing only 350 Then that get the next terawatt, even if we only do 350 This year, that puts us at 600. Only doing 350. Did you hear that Tim? Only to deploy 350 gigs? That was very cute of me. Gosh, the numbers are just so big man. It just blows my brain. I remember breaking 100 saying I can't comprehend this. So we are so close to pop in our second terawatt in three years. That Oh, that would just be so cool, man.

Tim Montague:

Well, I love the I love the passion. It is it is incredible that we're that we're seeing these volumes. I'm there's a lot there's a lot to be hopeful for. I mean, the The challenge, of course, is that we have 45 gigawatts, or sorry, 45 gigawatts, as we were discussing also 45 terawatts of solar to install. So that's the that's the bigger picture, a lot of solar to install. To achieve a 50% solarized global grid, we're estimating you and I right back of the envelope, anticipating that the grid is going to double or triple. It's actually easily going to triple because we're going to electrify in heavy industrial heat, which is today made with fossil fuels. And that's like 40% of our carbon emissions. It's a huge amount of energy. And then there's transportation, and then there's the grid. So you want to talk about polysilicon, I don't know you're gonna, you might blast off if we have another coverage slash.

John Weaver:

Well, there's this one, there's the next one. There's like three stories in a row that are just gonna make me excitable, excitable. So. So part of this growth that's occurring and why we might have 400 gigs is that by the end of this year, we hit 300 gigs of manufacturing capacity. And we believe, though, that very soon, we're going to have 500 gigawatts of poly silicon manufacturing capacity. This, this scaling of manufacturing capacity is leading to leading to an oversupply issue. We still have massive demand. But we also have new capacity coming online, huge amounts. And so August was the last time I saw the price peak. And in this article, there's a chart Bloomberg and Infolink. Both saw peak in August. Since August. For Bloomberg, the price of raw Paulo silicon has fallen more than half and

Tim Montague:

the title of the story here, the price of polysilicon has fallen by 54% Since August,

John Weaver:

and this was anticipated a little faster happening than others have projected it to occur. And this is gonna be the story of 23. Man, what our module is going to cost. Now. I did check that out. Check that don't look at that drop there. Holy. Oh my goodness. You know, we see the peak, I was told by a gentleman in at Bloomberg. Yeah, that's where it starts to drive. So we got the peak there. And that's in the upper middle 40s. And you know, now we're down to 17. And it's just dropping and dropping, or upper 30s. Pardon me. 38 is what's the number I was told? What I believe it's

Tim Montague:

between the, the polysilicon price and the beacom index, what is the beacom? Index? I

John Weaver:

don't know, sir. I gotta learn more, I got to learn more. This is stuff, you got to pay like 65 grand a year to Bloomberg to get into there. They tweeted this chart, Rob Barnett, he's one of the bosses over there. And so I saw that chart, man, I had an article up fast. Because I was I've been I've been chasing on this hammer and on this, and this is that drop right there, man, look at that drop. That's just that's just huge. And even Infolink showed a 20% drop over the past week. And I bet you their numbers even bigger next week, or maybe similar. But, uh, so that that pricing decline is just big. And you know, it's kind of neat. And now we're gonna see this next chart, start to go the other direction, the one that's below this, and that next chart is gonna, you're gonna see the price fall again, after you know, we're, we started to approach the 2012, we pass 2012 2011 numbers, we didn't touch the 2008 2009 10, which is great. But, you know, now we're here. And so the price policy is going to come down, which is going to lead to the price of modules probably coming down.

Tim Montague:

What is the reason i What is this chart showing though this green bar graph, what is this

John Weaver:

price poly silicon over since 2011. So this is the chart above, except going back over the last decade.

Tim Montague:

So this, this chart doesn't go past August when the price fell.

John Weaver:

Yeah, this this article is actually that I grabbed this from is from like August or so. And so they didn't have an updated one. So this chart shows where it was in August. I grabbed that because I wanted to see a good historical number, and I complimented it with the, you know, very recent one. So this, we're now the next time we see a chart like this, you're gonna see a follow through at the end of it.

Tim Montague:

And you see way back here in 20. Pre 2012 There was a massive spike, right, which was really painful. There was a bigger one before that in what that was like, Oh, 809

John Weaver:

he had a big one was oh eight and went up to like 400 bucks. Dude, put people out of business. Yeah. Yeah, so

Tim Montague:

Oh, 809, the bigger solar coaster. We talked about the solar coaster because of the regional ups and downs. But this was a global economy that really shut down the industry.

John Weaver:

And it's what led to China just massively expanding their capacity and say, Alright, here's the thing to attack. So let's price Paula silicones. Coming down, we're gonna see some module pricing easing. I did read one analysis, I think by the folks at PV tech, who said listen, polysilicon might fall above module demand might say just as strong. And if module demand is just as strong, why should the manufacturers drop module pricing? Now I will say, though, that I have seen module pricing fall. So I expect module pricing to start to drop again, I'm starting to see modules available in the 30 cents, semi regularly, nothing in the US and nothing that's higher efficiency, but I'm starting to see the tier two players, or low level tier one players starting to put out things in the 30 cent range. And then you couple that though, with the cost of shipping, so I know we haven't talked about it recently. But this summer spring, the cost of shipping a container from China, to the west coast, the US had broken through 10 grand some I even saw some charts up to 15 grand, that's like four cents a lot is now back to 2000 bucks. There's even some that I saw like 1500. So we're back under well under a penny per watt for a 250 Kw shipping container of modules. So shipping is down. poly silicon is down. Demand for modules is still way up. But capacity for all of the supply chain is also way up. So there's gonna be a little dance there. If the Chinese keep installing like they are and just buying every cheap panel they can, you know, they're gonna install 120 140 gigs of solar, maybe more this year. I mean, China's goodness, it's wonderful that they exist for our industry, the way they're pushing things. And I know it's challenging for us from geopolitical and whatever standpoint, but from a global clean energy standpoint, you know, everybody's had their place, you know, the United States in the 70s, and 80s, Germany in the 80s, Japan, all of Europe, and then the Chinese, and now the whole globe. But the Chinese are a major support for the solar industry, with their, with their very powerful investment techniques, you know, fundamentally industrial policy, which is what the IRA is, the China, China had their own IRA in 2009. That's the difference. We're a decade behind China's IRA. That's really what we got.

Tim Montague:

Yep, most Americans have no clue were a decade behind China and Europe. When it comes to the clean energy transition. The good news is we're leaning in now we're seeing significant growth. And it's a huge economic opportunity. You know, I think about you and me, John. We have we have such a good life. We have so much economic freedom, working in solar the way we do. And if you're not working in clean tech in solar, wind or storage, reach out to us because we will help you get a toehold in this industry. And it's, it is a very good thing. Let's talk about Fraunhofer I love Fraunhofer. Another well kept secret in the United States, you geek for green building to really know about Fraunhofer but you found a photovoltaics report. What? What are they? What's the story here?

John Weaver:

So the whole report is awesome, just good data, good research. But I when we're talking about poly silicon, I wanted to talk about page 34. And it brings into it actually adds another facet of consideration when we talk about all the silicon so and how much it costs and other details. So if we look at this chart, first, we can see that per watt. So I'm we're looking at the orange line. First, we're not well, we'll look at the blue line later, but the Orange Line denotes how many grams of silicon are necessary per watt of solar power. And if we look at this in 2004, like incomprehensible, 16 grams per watt, now if we look in 21, it's almost at two grams per watts of poly of silicon per watt. And if we, if we go back to that article I wrote, here, you know what, you still got it there, click on it real quick. The next tab over you still have the price of poly silicon up at the top. Go. Okay, so right now you're at the bottom, you're perfect. Scroll down a tiny bit. So if you read those two paragraphs, I talked about it in 2012. If a 500 watt solar panel needed 3000 grams of poly, first of all 500 watt panels didn't exist, but whatever. So 500 watt panel needed three kilograms, while in 21, that same module would be one kilogram 1/3, the amount of poly for the same solar panel? Yep. That's huge. So when we talk about Tim, that the price of poly now is 40 bucks, and it was 40 bucks a decade ago? It's not. Right, it's 40 bucks divided by a third on a per module level. And that's even before inflation, which my wonderful editor threw in inflation was 25%. Since then, so we're getting better at using our materials. And people keep saying all the price of solar panels can't keep falling. Bullshit, yes, they can. They're gonna keep falling because we're gonna get better at using our technology. And if we get thinner and thinner solar cells, if we ever consider some, what's a key Fluss you know, from like, Karplus, thank you, Timothy. Cephalus. I don't even know if that's a word. Let's make it Toothless. If we ever get to the point, we will read I have career Fluss solar module manufacturing, we get to like 50 micron thickness, and we have no waste. Because this includes some ways, you know, Diamond, Diamond saws, when they cut the ingots, they still have some waste. It's so little now that I apparently we don't recycle, it is what I was told by a smart person. But if we, you know, if we drop that again, and we get more efficient, and better and better, we're gonna use less. And so it's just, it's just cool. Yeah, this is the price falling over time. I didn't even look at this rest of the rest of this report. We could probably do a show just on this report and just go through the slides. Because Fraunhofer is so cool. So, so that's what I want to talk about in this report was, you know, when we're talking about the price of poly fouling, we're talking about volume scaling. You know, the one gigawatt poly silicon factory In 2005, produces three times as many solar panels as it does in two, or produces three times as many solar panels and 22. So our growth is growing faster than it was growing. Because we're more effective, we're more efficient at doing what we do. And that's, you know, that's a whole new story I really need to write is to talk about this report, see if there's an updated version from front of offer, or from maybe Bloomberg and say, and figure out a cool headline, say, we're growing our growth is faster because we're better, smarter, bigger, faster, smarter, all that stuff. It's just cool to watch. So, you know, it's a good complementary, good complementary piece of data. So all that poly silicon talk. Yep.

Tim Montague:

What is the US analog of Fraunhofer? Do we have enrolled? enrolled? Thank you course.

John Weaver:

Come on. You love it. We both live in Rome. I've been enrolled. I've been to their golden Colorado facility, man. I felt like a little kid in a candy shop. That was my Disney World.

Tim Montague:

I got to see the facility from afar. I took a trip. I took a SunPower training and we could see the campus who but I didn't go. I got I drove through real quickly, but I didn't go inside any of the buildings. But

John Weaver:

I know some people Tim, you know, let me know.

Tim Montague:

I definitely like to visit unreal. And it's

John Weaver:

Colorado who doesn't like going to Colorado? It's just how it's it's. It's southwest of Denver. So not bad place.

Tim Montague:

Yeah, that's in the, in the foothills of the Rockies. That's great skiing nearby. And if you drive, I'll do that this winter. Go go to Colorado, go skiing and go to NFL.

John Weaver:

Sounds like playing man. Let me know. I got friends in Denver. take you out to dinner.

Tim Montague:

Yeah, a lot going on in Colorado. It's a real hotspot for the solar industry. Yep. Yeah, a lot of solar companies.

John Weaver:

Good solar. A lot of good wins. I'm working as a consultant on a larger ground mount system out there. Large, potentially 250. Max. Nice. Yeah, it's a landowner who's being solicited by big time developers for a Excel IRP and hope they get into it. Hope it works.

Tim Montague:

Well, speaking of Unreal

John Weaver:

that's more inro. No, this is Fraunhofer again.

Tim Montague:

It's Fraunhofer. But it references and row.

John Weaver:

Well, it's the Enrile chart, you know, because enrols got the most famous chart. But yes, so Fraunhofer has a new record high efficiency solar cell. It's under 666 concentrations. By the way, Tim, you really need to catch up on any for everybody in your LinkedIn lottery. I got so many job offers on LinkedIn, it's like I need to put check off a box that says no, I'm not open to work. But what this article is about is that top right, little dot all the way at the top there the number one and that chart. Yep, that's it. That's what this article is about. 47.6% 47.6. Now that is a six layer chip, no, four, it's a four junction chip. And it's under 666 concentration, sunlight. And, and it's just the most efficient ship in the world now. So new record, and that's pretty cool. And, you know, of course, this isn't gonna get us anywhere on Earth. This is for a while it could get used on Earth, like in Super high cost places like drones or on an airplane or other cool places. That wouldn't work very well on a drone or an aeroplane because it wants direct radiation. But in space, this technology does get us this multi layer technology. It's a this multi layer technology is on the What's it called the International Space Station. I don't know if it's on other satellites, but it's definitely on the ISS. So let's just neat.

Tim Montague:

I mean, the delta is interesting. The the best of breed commercial panels are in the in the mid 20s. Right? 24% efficiency today. Yes, best and so what's coming is almost double that in efficiency, which is pretty incredible. Um, but it's got to be hybrid, right? Because the physical limit for traditional crystal and photovoltaics is like 33%, isn't it?

John Weaver:

Yeah, the technical single layer or poly silicon limit is 33. Though realistic one is like 29, because you know, there's losses and this and that, and this. But yeah, so this is now now whether or not we can ever install something like this on a house. I don't know. Because it might not make sense.

Tim Montague:

But, you know, well, yeah, there's a lot of things you can do in theory, or at a very high expense, like, fusion. It's so interesting how that fusion story took off. And I had complete, you know, lay people who have no interest in clean energy, really, for the most part, you know, saying, Hey, did you see that story about fusion? It's so cool. And I'm like, Yeah, but is it ever going to pencil? I don't doubt that. We'll figure it out. Right. But I don't know that it's ever going to be cost competitive. So I'm not, but it just grabbed people's attention. It got a lot of news.

John Weaver:

I mean, it would be cool to have a giant fusion reaction reactor in the middle of the middle of New York City.

Tim Montague:

Yeah, as long as it's contained. It's awesome, right? You gotta you gotta continue in a magnetic field. Right. And that's, that's hard. Because we don't have materials that can withstand the heat that comes off of the reaction. But anyway, the sun does it every day for free. And we appreciate that. takes eight minutes. Eight minutes from Sun to Earth.

John Weaver:

Eight minutes solar name their company after that. That's right. It's good name.

Tim Montague:

All right. Well, we're down to the wire. We better we better wrap this up. John. I don't think we can do even another story. I really appreciate you bringing all this great news, you've obviously been writing a lot, you must have been on vacation. So thank you. Thank you, Santa Claus. Looking forward to a great 2023 Though this is this is going to be a great year for clean energy. And like I said earlier, reach out to me if you're not already in. I'm given a webinar tonight on getting into commercial solar growing your commercial solar sales practice. So reach out to me and you can find all of our content at clean power hour.com Give us a rating and a review on Apple and Spotify. And please subscribe to the YouTube. But most most importantly, reach out to us. You can find us on LinkedIn. That's the easiest way to find me or on the on the website. How can our listeners find you John

John Weaver:

Marshall solar guide.com. I got a Contact Us report. You can also reach out to me on Twitter. I'm solar in mass. And I'm on Leeton john fitzgerald Weaver.

Tim Montague:

Excellent. Well that's a wrap. I will see you and all of our listeners next week. I'm Tim Montague. Let's go solar and storage see what's on this business call it it