Cripps Sears: Diversity – Building the bottom line with diversity

“We cannot solve our problems with the same kind of thinking that created them.” – Albert Einstein

Read more

Introducing our new Pods

The international reach of Cripps Sears continues grow stronger as we welcome both Christopher Meredith (Perth office) and Peter-Paul Nijsten (based in Singapore).

Read more

Summer Soirée 2016

We held our annual Summer Soirée on the 8th June at the Inner Temple Hall in Central London.

A combined networking and fundraising event now in it’s third year, we were excited to see a surge in numbers of those attending this time.  CSP consultants and associates were able to connect with some key members of the industries we represent over drinks and canapes – many thanks to all of those who attended. Read more

Country Focus: Changes to Mexico’s energy policy driving development

Mexico’s shale gas and oil sector could be about to take off, as the country’s first, keenly anticipated, shale auction could take place later this year or next.

However, remaining upbeat in the face of low oil prices, Mexico has not only announced a successful licensing round for onshore oil blocks, but announced its intention of offering plum Gulf of Mexico blocks “by the third quarter of 2016”. The upstream industry changes are a highly visible part of the energy policy shift that is driving investment throughout the oil space. Read more

Country Focus: Substantial investment in Myanmar energy sector

Substantial investment is planned for Myanmar, much of it energy sector related.

A combination of factors is behind this capital spending rise. The US recently extended its exemption on the financing of trade through Myanmar ports, which was initially established last year, temporarily, for six months. Political changes in Myanmar have also helped, including the first democratic elections in 2015 and the lifting of Western sanctions in 2012, which was preceded by the ending of 15 years of military rule in 2010.

Read more

New solar panels that track the sun are based on Origami. Really

The renewables sector continues to innovate to compete with conventional energy. Cost of solar equipment has dropped significantly as technology has adapted and improved. In a continuation of this theme researchers at the University of Michigan have demonstrated that a simple method of increasing the amount of energy produced by solar panels can boost a panel’s energy generation by 40 per cent, significantly reducing its overall cost.

The majority of solar panels worldwide are fixed on rooftops at a set angle. This means they miss out on capturing solar energy during parts of every day because they do not tilt to follow the sun.

The engineering researchers found that by cutting solar cells into particular designs using kirigami, a type of origami involving cutting as well as folding, the cells are capable of tracking the sun’s angle – without having to be fitted on a tilting panel.

The process requires the making of a specific kirigami cut to create strips in a solar cell. When the two ends are pulled in opposite directions, the strips then tilt and assume the desired angle.

A key detail is that the structure thus created morphs in such a way as to prevent an individual strip from casting shadows on its neighbours. Further, the “waviness” of the new form does not impair its performance.

The researchers, led by Max Shtein and Stephen Forrest, both professors of materials science and engineering, calculate that solar panels which have tracking mechanisms can generate 20 to 40 per cent more energy a year than fixed panels.

However, tracking panels are can be costly and cumbersome and cannot be used on the majority of pitched roof buildings, which represent around 80 per cent of solar power installations.

The new kirigami panels can generate more electricity using the same amount of semiconducting material. They do this to nearly the same degree that conventional tracking systems do, said Shtein.

He commented: ““It doesn’t take much force at all. And although the technique is best suited for thin, flexible materials, in principle it could work with almost any kind of solar cell.”

However, the newly demonstrated system, which has flexible solar cells made of gallium arsenide, is so far only a proof-of-principle. Bringing the technology to the point of commercial application still appears some years off.

Oil market price drop may herald “a new oil order”

A senior Goldman Sachs analyst recently argued that the changes to the oil market which have produced the recent fall in oil prices constitute a fundamentally new paradigm. Read more

UPDATE: ABC Charity raises £100,000

This year Cripps Sears & Partners is delighted that four members of staff have volunteered to tackle the vertiginous heights of the South African mountains on foot – for our Action for Burns in children (ABC) charity. Through a series of fundraising events including a Mexican Feast, a Hungarian delicatessen selection and sponsored cups of tea, the group have been edging ever closer to their sponsorship targets. Read more

Ted Theodore joins Cripps Sears & Partners

2015 has been a challenging year but a successful one and we are delighted to welcome Ted Theodore as part of our continued international expansion. Based in Lagos, Ted will be heading our Lagos office and working closely with our practice leads in developing business in Sub Saharan Africa. Read more

Motivating staff in a time of change

“Leaders owe it to everybody who works for them not to keep them in the dark. What are you doing right? What can you do to improve? Give them purpose. Give them excitement.” Read more