Building integrated pv started receiving attention in the Netherlands around 1990. Attention has ever
since been focusing on the integration of pv into new dwellings. Efforts have resulted in cost
reductions, performance improvements, the development of new integration products and the creation
of a network with utilities, property developers, architects, building companies and local authorities.
PV system costs have been reduced by one third, to 5 Euro in 2000. System performance has gone up
slightly during the reporting period, further reducing the costs per unit energy produced. Inverter costs
have gone down from 1.5 Euro/Wp in 1991 to 0.5 Euro/Wp in 2000. Concerning integration into
buildings and the building process, the Netherlands pv programme has been concentrating on
developing products for low-cost integration into sloped roofs of new buildings. Watertight profile
systems have been developed, tested, and applied in projects on a growing scale. The costs for
building integration have come down due to improvements in integration systems, the electric system
and in installation procedures. Projects have also been carried out on an increasing scale to learn about
the integration of pv into the building process.
In total, a capacity of more than 8 MW was installed by the end of the year 1999, with projects
ranging from individual dwellings and offices to solar cities such as the Nieuw Sloten project in
Amsterdam (250 kWp) and Nieuwland in Amersfoort (1MW).
Now, at the turn of the century, plans are being derived to give pv the ’boost’ to become commercially
viable within the next 7 to 10 years. For this, an ambitious goal is being formulated by government
together with the pv industry, utilities, the building sector and others involved in pv in the
Already in the mid nineties, the long-term energy programme of the ministry of Economic Affairs set
the target at an installed pv capacity of 250 MWp by the year 2010. In order to achieve a
commercially viable market within the next 7 to 10 year, however, a goal of 500 MWp installed pv
capacity would be required. Recent research shows that such a target is ambitious, but achievable if
supported by dedicated government programmes, investments by industry and contributions of the
building and utility sector.
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