Jun 1, 2018

Google and Eon partner on UK solar power service project

Sophie Chapman
2 min
The America-based technology giant, Google, has launched its Project Sunroof in the UK, three years after it was unveiled i...

The America-based technology giant, Google, has launched its Project Sunroof in the UK, three years after it was unveiled in the US.

The firm has partnered with the British energy supplier, E.ON, and the German software company, Tetraeder, on the project.

The service uses data from Google Maps and Google Earth to analyse solar potential on individual houses.

Machine learning can examine characteristics of properties, such as angles and roof spans, as well as local weather information and additional area features, such as trees.

“We have joined forces with Google to bring their Project Sunroof technology to our solar calculator,” E.ON reported.


“In specific areas of Britain, you will be able to see the amount of sun that hits the roof of your home. We can then accurately calculate the savings you could make by installing solar panels.”

The service has been deemed to be broadly accurate from users in the US.

“By analysing the roof shape, they will take out one of the steps that you would have to go through to get solar panels installed,” Jonathan Marshall, Head of Analysis at Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit, informed the BBC.

“The speed of the process means that if you're half-tempted by the idea, you're more likely to go ahead with it.”

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Apr 23, 2021

Drax advances biomass strategy with Pinnacle acquisition

Dominic Ellis
2 min
Drax is advancing biomass following Pinnacle acquisition it reported in a trading update

Drax' recently completed acquisition of Pinnacle more than doubles its sustainable biomass production capacity and significantly reduces its cost of production, it reported in a trading update.

The Group’s enlarged supply chain will have access to 4.9 million tonnes of operational capacity from 2022. Of this total, 2.9 million tonnes are available for Drax’s self-supply requirements in 2022, which will rise to 3.4 million tonnes in 2027.

The £424 million acquisition of the Canadian biomass pellet producer supports Drax' ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) and will make a "significant contribution" in the UK cutting emissions by 78% by 2035 (click here).

Drax CEO Will Gardiner said its Q1 performance had been "robust", supported by the sale of Drax Generation Enterprise, which holds four CCGT power stations, to VPI Generation.

This summer Drax will undertake maintenance on its CfD(2) biomass unit, including a high-pressure turbine upgrade to reduce maintenance costs and improve thermal efficiency, contributing to lower generation costs for Drax Power Station.

In March, Drax secured Capacity Market agreements for its hydro and pumped storage assets worth around £10 million for delivery October 2024-September 2025.

The limitations on BECCS are not technology but supply, with every gigatonne of CO2 stored per year requiring approximately 30-40 million hectares of BECCS feedstock, according to the Global CCS Institute. Nonetheless, BECCS should be seen as an essential complement to the required, wide-scale deployment of CCS to meet climate change targets, it concludes.

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