The Mexican solar association (Asolmex), Solar Power Europe and the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ), presented their report “Digitalisation & solar”, within the first edition of Intersolar in Mexico, which aims to foster the digitalisation of the Mexican solar value chain.
- The Mexican solar sector has experienced an unprecedent growth in the last six years, its installed capacity has improved from 30 MW to 4,519 MW of solar photovoltaic.
- This growth brought a direct investment of approximately 8 billion USD and has created around 64 thousand of jobs along the solar value chain.
- Mexico currently has 50 solar power plants in commercial operation in 15 states of the Republic: Aguascalientes, Baja California, Baja California Sur, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Durango, Estado de México, Guanajuato, Hidalgo, Jalisco, Querétaro, San Luis Potosí, Sonora, Yucatán y Zacatecas.
- Solar Distributed Generation accounts more than 100 thousand interconnection agreements along the country.
The digitalisation of solar is key to continue this growing tendency.
The report shows how solar business models have improved through the implementation of digital technology along its value chain, from manufacturing processes to operation and maintenance, asset management and residual energy supply.
Certainly, the digital technologies would help to achieve the energetic transition goals, such as guaranteeing universal access to electricity.
In this context, the development of certain models like community solar and microgrids interconnected to the grid, could be boosted with the implementation of new digital solutions such as smart-meters, battery storage, artificial intelligence, peer-to-peer networks and blockchain technology:
- Smart meters offer new intelligent solutions to boost new solar business models (i.e. smart buildings, decentralised data hubs, community solar), thus contributing to the development of smartgrids.
- Peer-to-peer networks (P2P), favour the decentralisation of solar by fostering the market between peers; nonetheless, it is mandatory to apply the state of the art in cybersecurity and data protection.
- The core of blockchain is the transparency, immutability and traceability of data, thus the main objective of this technology is empowering the final user and eventually turn it into a prosumer. The last three technologies applied to community solar will help to achieve the democratization of energy.
- Battery storage would help to increase the reliability of renewable energy sources, it offers several solutions that together with big data analysis and artificial intelligence, will help to decrease the maximum demand by automatizing the peak shaving process.
This report shares several case studies of how digitalisation can become the motor to integrate more renewable energy into the National Grid by improving reliability, availability and efficiency of the grid. Besides, the report presents policy recommendations in order to increase the implementation of digital technologies in the solar sector, highlighting the biggest challenges of the industry. The latter will help to consolidate the energetic transition from analogue systems to fully digitalised solar.
In this context, it is recommended to facilitate the access to real time date of the National Grid (SEN) and to the Wholesale electricity market (MEM) for key industry actors. Finally, the regulators should create a more harmonised regulatory environment for these technologies across Mexico.
Download the current report from here: