(Yicai Global) May 28 -- Trina Solar Ltd. has acquired the world's leading solar tracker maker Nclave Renewable SL as it looks to transform into a global provider of smart solar solutions from a product supplier.
Jiangsu province-based Trina paid an undisclosed cash sum for the Spanish manufacturer, the buyer said in a statement on May 21. Nclave was one of the world's first solar tracker makers and has been developing the products, which automatically adjust the angle of solar panels to follow the sun, for more than 12 years.
There is little room to lower the price of photovoltaic modules, Yin Rongfang, vice president at Trina, told Yicai Global. Cost reductions will come from making systems more efficient by using new components and reducing waste, and the latest acquisition aligns with Trina's future plans, he added.
Companies previously sought to reduce system costs to develop the market, but the challenge now is to find a broader range of applications for solar technology, Yin said. His acquisition marks the first time a Chinese solar firm has purchased an overseas tracker firm.
Hitting the Mainstream
"Once solar power achieves grid parity, it will become a mainstream energy source," he continued. "Photovoltaic companies should not only look into power generation equipment, but must also look at the entire industry from an overall power supply perspective."
Balancing solar energy distribution will be a high priority for Trina. Unlike traditional energy sources, solar is generated passively. It produces more energy than is needed during the day but is unable to keep up with demand overnight, and this could prove a problem if solar is to become more conventional.
In order to combat the issue, Trina began planning TrinaPro solar solutions and needed to acquire a tracker firm, Yin said. The system, the first of its kind in the domestic industry, aims to help large power stations optimize solar generation to ensure efficient operations and reduce costs.
The solar sales market is shifting from price-based to value-based, and Yin believes TrinaPro will slot nicely into the new wave of demand by increasing photovoltaic generation by 30 percent while cutting costs by more than 10 percent.
Editor: James Boynton