Our Highlights From The Solar Energy UK 2014 Show

by | Oct 26, 2014 | Events, Rexel

 The Solar Energy UK show at the NEC ran from October 14th – 16th 2014 and was a huge success from the viewpoint of Clean Solar Solutions.  In it’s fifth year, the show attracted over 200 exhibitors and 4,000 visitors from over 50 countries.

Clean Solar Solutions were happy to exhibit on a stand with show sponsors Rexel Energy Solutions who launched their award winning Solar Energeasy portal to the solar industry.  We have partnered with Rexel Energy Solutions with a view to providing the solar panel cleaning to their end users for the next 3 years.

Day one of the Solar Energy UK show saw Amber Rudd, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change open the show with a call to arms for the solar industry.  She congraulated the industry as a whole for its endeavors and outstanding achievements to date.  The UK now has enough solar energy to power over 900,000 homes.  She also acknowledged the role the industry has to play in creating jobs for small and medium sized enterprises, an estimated 14,000 of them.  Rudd also promised sensible, controlled backing from the UK government as they seek to renew interest and growth for the solar sector in the UK.  

After her speech, she paid a brief visit to the Rexel stand to meet some of the team, including Strategic Development Director for Rexel, Brian Smithers and Director of Renewables & Energy Solutions Jerry Hamilton.

Solar PV installers showed great interest in the Solar Energeasy portal on the first day of the show and an increasing number of installers admitted that despite their initial thoughts from a few years ago, solar panel cleaning is indeed a much needed part of maintenance on solar arrays.  As a result, we are now looking to partner with a number of installers we met at the show and enable them to offer a professional solar panel cleaning service to their clients in the future.

The evening of the opening day of the Solar Energy UK show saw the eagerly anticipated Solar Power Portal Awards evening which was held at the Hilton NEC Metropole and hosted by the BBC’s Kate Humble.  

The black-tie event began with pre-dinner drinks, followed by a 3 course meal, the awards ceremony and then those with enough remaining energy partied hard to a live electric soul band!   

The show was a huge success with some of our partners picking up awards for their hard work and outstanding achievements.  Spirit Solar are one of our solar panel cleaning partners won the Public Space Installation award for their solar array at Middlesex University Hospital and they also won the Renewable Heat Installation award for their installation on the art wing of Bradford College.  The judges commented that it represented ‘a great showcase for the power of renewables‘.

Another of our solar panel cleaning partners Solarsense UK won the fiercely-contested Domestic Rooftop Installation award for their installation on Croyde Cottage.  The roof of the property generates enough energy to power and heat the cottage as well as charge the owner’s electric vehicle.  

A new award was introduced this year, the Rexel Foundation Prize.  An amazing £15,000 prize was awarded to the most deserving non-profit-making organisation that has developed and executed a socially innovative community project in 2014, that has benefited those most in need in terms of energy and cost savings.  The winners, Energise Sussex Coast were presented with the cheque by Strategic Development Director for Rexel, Brian Smithers.  ESC is a community benefit co-op set up in 2012 to reduce fuel poverty in the region through energy saving and renewable energy generation schemes.

Day 2 of the show saw many exhibitors looking a little bleary-eyed after their exertions the night before!  Clean Solar Solutions promoted their ground maintenance service aimed specifically at the solar ground mount sector throughout the day.  Grass cutting, hedge trimming and tree surgery are essential parts of maintaining a solar park or solar farm and preventing shading on the solar panels which will inhibit the output from an array.  Due to demand from solar farm and solar park owners, we have combined our solar panel cleaning service with a ground maintenance service and are now aiming to become an all-in-one solution for operations and maintenance on large scale developments, looking to increase the efficiency and output of a solar farm or park via non-electrical means. 

We were able to meet with the editors of Greenhub, a new, high quality web-based magazine dedicated to the future of sustainability.  Editors Emma and Samantha have years of experience working within the publishing side of the renewables industry and they identified the need for a hub-style website for the industry. Greenhub is a valuable resource for those looking to keep right up to date with the latest technologies and projects as it links together the main renewables stories from around the globe.  We look forward to working with them in the future.

Day 3 was seemed like the busiest day for us and the rest of the Rexel team.  The stand was a hive of activity right until the close of the day.

Clean Solar Solutions would like to thank all of the staff of Rexel Energy Solutions, both those at the show who were both hospitable and supportive of our service and the organisers who worked hard in the background and helped to make our show so successful.  We feel part of the team!

With all of this in mind, we eagerly now work toward developing as a company during the next 12 months and look forward to seeing you all at the Solar Energy UK show during 13th – 15th October 2015, where we will do it all over again!