Yesterday (Sept. 14) The Department of Energy announced three new efforts to help advance solar technologies by funding 40 projects with $42 million in funding and up to $65 million in future funding for advancing solar technology.
"Since 2008, the commitments made by the Department of Energy have contributed to solar PV's deployment growing 30-fold and overall costs falling more than 60 percent," said Under Secretary for Science and Energy Franklin Orr. "Continuing to invest in solar technologies will help to drive down costs even further for American consumers and ensure that the U.S. maintains global leadership in this century's clean energy economy."
As such the Energy Department Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy's (EERE) SunShot Initiative is funding 40 projects with $42 million. The projects are aimed improving solar panel performance, reliability and manufacturability. Of that $17 million will support 19 projects in the PV Research and Development Program. The projects will support current and emerging PV technologies. “These projects could significantly lower solar PV costs from SunShot's 2020 targets to support even more widespread deployment of PV technologies across the nation,” DOE said.
The DOE is investing $25 million to support 21 projects through SunShot's Technology to Market Program. The projects are aimed at reducing hardware costs, improving operational efficiency and broadening the project development investor pool. It will develop new tools, technologies and services for the solar industry. “The projects will yield products that can leverage new, emerging technologies and assist in streamlining regulatory processes,” the department explained.
The DOE also announced funding opportunities for future research that will help reduce the cost of solar power. It plans to appropriate $65 million in additional funding that will be made available through its PV Research and Development Program, its Technology to Market Program and its Systems Integration Program. The Technology to Market Program will realize up to $30 million to accelerate commercialization of new solar technologies. The PV Research and Development Program will receive up to $25 million to fund improving solar panel systems and designs. The Systems Integration Program will receive up to $10 million available for projects focused on improving solar irradiance and power forecasts for energy management systems used by utilities.Tweet